According to the American Society for Quality, Total Quality
management is defined as “A management approach to long-term success through
customer satisfaction. TQM is based on all members of an organization
participating in improving processes, products, services and the culture in
which they work.”
TQM aims at improving the quality of products and services
by bringing in refinements/improvements according to the continuous feedback,
and extends quality awareness in all the processes within a firm. The main goal
is to achieve optimal quality in all the areas.
Total Quality Management applies to both the product and the
Organization. It does not solely focus on creating profits for the organization
but also on improving the employee training, employee satisfaction et cetera.
Disney likes to call its customers as “Guests” and treats
them as VIPs. They utilize technology to optimize the waiting time for
queues. Using some algorithms, a guest
gets a ticket which specifies the time at which he/she should come to the
specific attraction so that he/she would not have to face a queue at all.
Disneyland believes in continuous improvement, and not just
from it’s employee’s point of view but by the perception of the guests as well.
It calls it’s customers as “Guests” and the employees as
“Cast Members”. All its “Cast Members” (employees) are treated as equals, be it
a sweeper or a top manager.
Disneyland, after implementing its quality system in place,
a) increase customer
b) Bring in more revenue,
c) Lower the operational costs,
d) Maintain higher quality and standards in products and
e) Optimize the productivity.
When Disneyland was first opened in 1955, it faced flak from
Hollywood, top executives, media and even Walt Disney’s own brother. It was
believed to be a failed project and Walt Disney had to go against all odds to
make this dream aa reality. He borrowed against his life insurance and sold off
all his property to fund this project. There were numerous operational hurdles
on the first day of opening but within seven weeks, the attendance has rose to
over a million visitors and became more popular than the Grand Canyon and
Yellowstone national park. While constructing the first theme park, which was
diversifying their business model back then, Walt Disney had imagined an empire
which maintained a strong commitment to quality entertainment. Till this day,
the core values envisaged by Walt Disney is held into place by delivering
exceptional quality and creativity.
As stated by the Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts,
“Disney is not in the attraction business, the hotel business, the cruise ship
business; They are in the guest experience business. The great shared memories
that guests cherish and create every day at their parks helps keep people
coming back year-after year”.
Disneyland pays close attention to the most minute details
and exceeds its guests’ expectations every time they visit the park. When it
comes to Quality, the focus is towards customer satisfaction, with specific
focus over the role of the employees in delivery of service. Disneyland’s
philosophy of serving the people, treating them as VIPs account for the greater
percentage of success of the company.
At Disneyland, the employees (also called as “Cast Members”
, regardless of their designation) are considered a central resource for the
organization. The recruitment procedure is comprehensive and makes sure that
the person hired matches with the goals and the core values of the company. They
are extensively trained in quality awareness, customer service and
communication. By imparting high quality
training to its employees, Disney directs at improving its service quality.
At Disneyland the road sweepers have a 5-day training course
10 minutes on how to use a sweeper and the remainder on how to give information
to guests.According to them, their sweepers are not just cleaning Main Street,
they are helping to create an atmosphere of happiness.
Disney utilizes a culture which is a mélange of Innovation,
Design Engineering Organization(IDEO’s) under which Disney follows a
non-hierarchical organization culture. The employees are rewarded on the number
of projects that they are handling rather than on their designation.
By eliminating the existential hierarchy from its
organizational culture , Disney manages to make the voice of all its employees
heard equally. It makes every employee feel like they are playing an equally important
role within the organization. The goal is to create an environment which is
both productive for the company and enjoyable for the employees.
According to Edwards Deming’s book, Out of the Crisis, which
is credited with launching the TQM Movement, the following key principles are
proposed. Let us view them in reference with Disney.
1)Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product
and service, with the aim to become competitive, to stay in business and to
2)Adopt the new philosophy. We are in a new economic age.
Western management must awaken to the challenge, must learn their
responsibilities, and take on leadership for change. It is imperative for
Disney to continuously upgrade its training procedures for all its cast members
in order to keep up with the trends and needs.
3)Cease dependence on inspection to achieve quality.
Eliminate the need for massive inspection by building quality into the product
in the first place. Rather than wasting resources on cross examination, Disney
utilizes modern technological tools such as experience design, statistical
process control, deployment of quality function in order to minimize the errors
4)End the practice of awarding business on the basis of a
price tag. Instead, minimize total cost. Move towards a single supplier for any
one item, on a long-term relationship of loyalty and trust. Disney’s aim is to
minimize the cost of operations.
5)Improve constantly and forever the system of
production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly
decrease costs. Disney strongly believes in continuous learning and making
improvements based on the feedback they receive.
6)Institute training on the job. Employee training at Disney
is taken very seriously at all levels.
7)Institute leadership Disney believes that Leadership comes
the knowledge and expertise and not the rank.
8)Drive out fear , so that everyone may work
effectively for the company. By identifying and bridging the gaps between
communication, culture and training, Disney drives out the fear.
9)Break down barriers between departments. People in
research, design, sales, and production must work as a team, to foresee
problems of production and usage that may be encountered with the product or
service. Team work is deeply appreciated as Disney and no person can exist in
10)Eliminate slogans, exhortations, and targets for the work
force. Disney does not keep unrealistic slogans for its workforce to ensure
high level of quality.
11)Remove numerical quota of employees. The responsibility
of supervisors must be changed from sheer numbers to quality. Disney strives to
achieve quality results and does not give much importance to quantity.
12)Remove barriers that rob people in management and in
engineering of their right to pride of workmanship. At Disneyland, the managers
are responsible for the quality end results.
13)Institute a vigorous program of education and
self-improvement. Disneyland has training for all its cast members and all of
them must undergo rigorous training in these areas.
14)Put everybody in the company to work to accomplish the
transformation. The transformation is everybody’s job. As stated previously,
all the cast members at Disneyland are considered equally and all their combined
efforts are needed for the transformation.
Just the employee training is not suffice without regularly
monitoring the progress. The cast members at Disneyland meet at regular
intervals to discuss and evaluate the effectiveness of these procedures.
Apart from Employee Training, Disneyland aims at attaining
quality by its sound operation management techniques. They take great interest
in making sure that the tangibles are working just fine by paying immense
attention to detail. All the machinery is on a programme for preventive maintenance.
The Model for maintaining the quality at Disneyland
Quality Planning: Disneyland imparts a rigorous training and development programme to its cast members to empower them so that
they can fulfill the needs and requirements of the guests. For planning the Quality, the needs of the
guests are assessed along with developing a process to cater high quality of
service to all its guests.
Quality Control: Quality control is carried out by the internal
clients of Disneyland and involves evaluating the current performance report
and matching them with the set standards. The last step is to bridge the gap
between the expectations and the reality.
Quality Improvement: Improving the quality finds its place
in the business plan for Disneyland. This involves monitoring the progress in
quality on a regular basis, rewarding the cast members for their efforts,
maintaining the momentum to fulfil the goals of quality improvement plans.
Six Sigma, a set of techniques and tools for process
improvement, aims at optimizing the output by determining the defects and
removing the root cause. Six sigma utilizes a set of quality management methods
(statistical and empirical). In regards to Disney, the following are some of
the Six Sigma principles are are incorporated
by the company.
Every cast member of six sigma program needs to be trained
through a combination of training also known as black belt of six sigma.
Six sigma engages an organizational structure that includes
top level management, project leaders, facilitators etc
Disneyland ensures that all its processes are meeting the
requirements of the guests and while maintaining the quality standards of six