Notes a broad agreement that small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) fulfil a critical role in modern economies, and therefore their ability to survive, remain competitive and produce high quality outputs is of utmost importance at both micro and macro levels. Focuses on total quality management (TQM), a new management paradigm, which is successfully competing with the well‐established paradigms such as scientific management. Argues that implementation of TQM principles can potentially help SMEs to enhance their robustness, as well as improve the quality of their final output. However, observes that, by comparison with the large organizations, SMEs have been slow in implementing TQM. Examines the differences between the characteristics of SMEs and large organizations; the relationship between the size of organization and inherent characteristics of TQM; and the effect of organization size on the implementation of TQM using deductive research. Using the case data, develops a ten‐step methodology for the implementation of TQM in SMEs.
Ghobadian, A. and Gallear, D. (1997), "TQM and organization size", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 17 No. 2, pp. 121-163. https://doi.org/10.1108/01443579710158023
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