There is no one way that these books can best be used.You can take one point, one assessment area or all the points dealt with in the standard or the Excellence Model as a theme for discussion, or you can combine questions to suit your needs. The book and its self-assessment tools can be used creatively to suit the situation. By using the book and by self-assessment:
The following describe a few practical situations:
Managing director to members of management group: "This book seems to deal with many important issues. Could you read and at the next meeting say how you think we could use it?"
Managing director: "Let?s go through the various assessment areas this autumn with the help of this book."
Quality manager: "This book provides an excellent resource for creating a question batch with examples that suits you and your individual needs."
Manager to team: "We have the ISO 9001 certificate already. We should probably expand our quality management to include other aspects than those required by the certificate. There seem to be some really good questions in the book that we could start to think about systematically. I propose that everyone reads the book, evaluates it and comments on it. We could then spend half a day going through them. You could fill in the tables in pairs and get the discussion going that way."
Sales manager to sales staff: "Good ideas, what do you think about these issues. We?re so split up that we hardly have time to meet and exchange ideas."
Production manager: "We?ve carried out the audits required by ISO 9001. This would be a good tool for self-assessment. It?s easily understandable without knowing the standards. The questions and examples seem to be broader than the ones we have used in audits. This is the kind of thing we need to develop. The structure of the book is already familiar."
Quality manager to himself: "I?ve always wondered what ISO 9004 really involves and how it is connected to ISO 9001. This makes it clear. The references to the numbers on the standard make it easier to interpret."
Managing director to management group: "This book seems to follow ISO 9001 and ISO 9004 standards quite faithfully. We could compare our own operations with them and see how far we are from them."
Foreman: "I?m getting tired of looking for non-conformities. This could help us to find really necessary development targets that we?ve never even thought of before. These are understandable to the workers as well."
"I thought we could take a look at National Quality Award Criteria. I think it would be easier if we were to start with one of the sections. People Category could be one. There is a straightforward self-assessment here which would let us get started easily."
"We have often thought about taking part in National Quality Award competition. This book would let us get the others involved in it too."
Human resources Manager: "We have carried out self-assessments several times. It has been useful, but the points systems have given us some problems. Using this for assessment would put a bit more pep into it."
Quality manager to himself: "I?ve always wondered what The National Quality Award Criteria really involves. This makes it clear.
Consultant to customer: "We?ll use this book as a text book throughout the whole development programme."