BIOGRAPHY: Dr. Kaoru Ishikawa
Biography: Dr. Kaoru Ishikawa
Dr. Kaoru Ishikawa
Kaoru Ishikawa is known as “the ‘Father of Quality Circles’ and as a founder of the Japanese quality movement”. (Beckford, John. Quality: A Critical Introduction) Ishikawa was also a pioneer in Total Quality Management. He believed in working for the customer before, during, and after product and/or services were delivered. Ishikawa was a Chemist, held a doctorate in Engineering, and was Professor at Tokyo University
Dr. Ishikawa believed in the customers’ needs. One of the many things he’s famous for is the “bottom up view of quality”. (Managing for ...view middle of the document...
With the establishment of ‘quality circles’, workers would meet to discuss ways to improve all phases of their workplace; their ideas were then shared with management. (Lai, Kee-hung; Cheng, T.C.E.. Just-in-Time Logistics.)
Influenced Quality Practices
In 1949 through the Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers he became a world-wide lecturer and consultant on quality. Quality improvement was very important to Ishikawa. He began writing explaining his approach; (the ‘Guide to Quality Control’ (1986) and ‘What is Total Quality Control’, and ‘The Japanese Way’ (1985)). With his analysis of how we should work as a team and with our customers, he created an analysis of cause and effect, which is also known as the “Ishikawa or fish bone” diagram. (Abingdon, Oxon, GBR: Ashgate Publishing Group, 2009. p 4.) This diagram is used to assist in brainstorming and enable teams to identify and graphically display, in detail, the root causes of a problem. Many project managers and mid-level managers still use this diagram today when dissecting issues or identifying risks in a project. This diagram helps learning from past errors prevents future errors. It is a good tool for uncovering the sources of risk and mapping their relationships.
Ideas fit into total quality management
Some US companies began using Ishikawa’s ‘Quality Circle’ concept in the late 1960’s. I believe many companies today are still using these same concepts as they work on improving their relationships with their workers, customers and improving their services and processes (I.E. hospitals, manufacturing plants, etc.). Ishikawa further developed on the principles from other quality leaders such as W. Edwards Deming, the creator of the Plan-Do-Check-Act model. He expanded Deming's four steps into six (Stecher, Brian M.; Camm, Frank; Damberg, Cheryl L. Toward a Culture of Consequences: Performance Based Accountability Systems for Public Services.):