Friday, November 21, 2014

Leadership and Quality Professionals

This blog post is in response to November 2014 ASQ Influential Voices topic "Is Every Quality Professional a Leader?"

I would start by defining leadership, leadership quotes, leadership versus management, leadership core competencies, some examples of great leaders, and leadership paradigm.

Then I will share my personal quality journey to stress the importance of leadership in all aspects of work (corporate, academic, professional, and not-for-profits).

Leadership Definition:

Leadership Quotes:

Leadership versus Management:

Leadership Core Competencies:

Great Leaders (Some Examples):

Leadership Paradigm:

Let me briefly elaborate on the Leadership Paradigm shown above. Rare are the Servant Leaders who sacrifice and provide service to others (e.g., Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, etc.). Most of the enlightened C level executives are Value Leaders. They focus on organization's growth and profit. Knowledge Leaders are generally educators who care for and share their knowledge with those who they come in contact with. Then finally there is Position Leadership. These are generally front to middle level managers (and sometimes C levels), who wield undesirable influence in the path to progress for an organization. 

Now I will highlight my quality journey and importance of leadership in various roles to be effective (For-Profit, Academic, Professional Organizations, and Not-for-Profit organizations).

For-Profit Organizations (40 years):
  • Served in a number of corporations at various levels to promote the mission of quality and excellence. 
  • Took extensive leadership and quality management training while working with AT&T Bell Laboratories.
  • Worked with senior leadership teams to elevate importance of quality including global clients.
  • Served as a champion/catalyst to raise the flag for quality using leadership skills acquired over the years.
Academics (21 years):
  • Currently associated with 33 educational institutions globally.
  • Teach courses in quality management, operation management, leadership excellence, supply chain management, project management, risk management, etc. at graduate level.
  • Continue to refine my leadership and subject matter knowledge by reading articles from Harvard Business Review, MIT Sloan Management Review, McKinsey Quarterly, etc.
  • Continue to learn new practices through students/professionals from various domains.

Professional Organizations (30 years):
  • Honor to serve at ASQ in various leadership capacity since 1988.
  • Served in leadership roles at ASQ Chicago Section, Regional, National, and International levels. Led number of strategic initiatives for ASQ including Capital Campaign and Volunteer Leader Recognition process. Served as a Site Committee Chair for ASQ's 50th Annual Quality Conference (now World Conference for Quality and Improvement). Also led ASQ Certification Process Improvement initiative.
  • Currently serve in advisory capacity at ASQ India promoting quality mission in education, health care, government, and corporate world.
  • Served in lead capacity at Information Integrity Coalition. Also served as a Chief Judge for the Illinois Team Excellence Award Program for seven years 91993-1999). From 2006-2010 served as a Chair of the Illinois Institute of Technology's Alumni Awards Program Judge's Committee.

Not-for-Profit Organizations (44 years):
  • Honor to serve and lead the Blind Foundation for India (BFI) since 1989.
  • The BFI is supporting over 15 million blind people in India through prevention, cure, education, and rehabilitation.
  • Served as Honorary Executive Director with GOSUMEC Foundation, USA to support Seth G. S. Medical College and K. E. M. Hospital in Mumbai, India,
  • Served as a Chair of the AT&T Bell Laboratories' Save the Children Holiday Fund Drive from 1985 to 1999 sponsoring 50 children in 20 countries around the world.
In summary, from my personal experience I can unequivocally stress the need for leadership for all quality professionals to be effective in adding positive value in any setting.

I would love to hear your perspective on this topic.


  1. Syntax:
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    Nice Blog And Blog Is About Leadership,Great Postings of Great Leaders,Good Work,Great Collections,Thanq Admin.

  2. A quality management system can be defined as the implementation of dedicated activities in a project to obtain continuous improvement.
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