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Metaphors: We Manage and Develop Quality by Screening and Elaborating on the Metaphors of Quality Management
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Quality Technology and Management, Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics. (Kvalitetsteknik)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5431-0392
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Quality Technology and Management, Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5610-2944
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Quality Technology and Management, Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8731-8040
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Quality Technology and Management, Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7621-2649
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2017 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose: Metaphors are a powerful and human way of understanding and experiencing one kind of thing in terms of another. In Quality Management (QM) several metaphors are used to describe and bring to life the often abstract QM concepts and systems in clearer terms. These metaphors are undoubtedly of great importance for how QM is understood, communicated and practiced. They can also be assumed to have a significant impact on the perceived attractiveness of, and engagement in, QM systems. However, the metaphors of QM have seldom been systematically screened or put in focus, neither the topic of a critical discussion. The purpose of this paper is hence to contribute with a screening of the metaphors currently used, within QM literature and in practice among QM leaders, and then elaborate on their potential for improvement and development.

Methodology/Approach: The paper is based on a literature review combined with interviews of QM leaders.

Findings: The paper highlights that the current QM metaphors provide intuitive associations to properties such as stability, shelter, and structure but not to the important dynamic properties of QM, such as learning, or to the critical role of people in QM. It also provides suggestions for further improvements and development.

Value of the Paper: The paper highlights the area of metaphors within QM as an important area for future research. It also provides insights concerning the successful use and selection of metaphors in future QM practice.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keywords [en]
Quality Management, Metaphors, Generativity, Leadership, Lean Leadership
National Category
Reliability and Maintenance
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-32530OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-32530DiVA, id: diva2:1167971
Conference
20th QMOD Conference, Helsingör, Denmark, 4-7 August, 2017
Projects
Simply LeanAvailable from: 2017-12-19 Created: 2017-12-19 Last updated: 2018-04-26Bibliographically approved

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Lilja, JohanIngelsson, PernillaSnyder, KristenBäckström, IngelaHedlund, Christer

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