Based on a profoundly important six--year study by the Center for the Quality of Management (CQM), "Integrated Management Systems" shows how successful organizations accomplish something unbelievably powerful: Creating their own particular ways of executing the scientific method. The authors worked with the cooperation of some of America's largest companies -- Teradyne, Hewlett--Packard, Eastman Chemical, Ritz--Carlton ---- and of non--profit organizations including top hospitals and the U.S. Navy. They were surprised to find how radically successful systems differed from one organization to the next. Yet the core of each was universal: Each organization had designed a system that gathered data about the organization's particular problems, developed theories, tested the theories, and finally documented and shared the results throughout the organization. Each successful organization's methods were unique much as the methods of each successful discipline within the sciences are unique. But less successful organizations had nothing comparable. And the processes through which the leaders in these organizations had gotten them on the right path had a great deal in common.
THOMAS H. LEE is President Emeritus of the Center for Quality of Management. He has also served as a senior manager at General Electric, a professor at MIT, and Director of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Vienna, Austria. SHOJI SHIBA is one of the world's foremost experts on TQM and the author of Four Practical Revolutions in Management. ROBERT CHAPMAN WOOD is a researcher associated with the Center for Quality of Management and the Asian Management Center of Boston University. His management writings have appeared in Forbes and the Financial Times (London).