The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationships between “soft” and “hard” TQM elements and quality management results.
Empirical data were drawn from 370 Greek companies using the questionnaire method. Confirmatory Factor Analysis was used to examine constructs' reliability and validity, while the relationships between them were examined through Structural Equation Modelling.
The study proved that quality improvement and the consolidation of the company's market position are influenced mainly by adopting “soft” TQM elements and secondarily “hard” TQM elements.
The fact that the study was based on quality managers' perceptions and the participation of companies from all sectors creates limitations, but also future research orientations.
To achieve benefits and obtain a competitive advantage, which is of major importance for the sustainability of a company, quality design, control and improvement tools are not enough and the adoption of a TQM culture is primarily required.
The study describes in a reliable and valid way a model which consists of “soft” and “hard” TQM elements and quality management results.
Fotopoulos, C.B. and Psomas, E.L. (2009), "The impact of “soft” and “hard” TQM elements on quality management results", International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 26 No. 2, pp. 150-163. https://doi.org/10.1108/02656710910928798
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