The human dimension in TQM : learning, training and motivation

University dissertation from Linköping : Linköping University Electronic Press

Abstract: The overall aim of this dissertation is to study and to explore the human dimension in TQM with focus on learning, training and motivation. The exploration of the evolution of TQM depict the theory of TQM as shaped from a narrow mechanistic apporach to a more humanistic apporach with focus on the human dimension thgough Japanese managerial practices inspired by ideas from western theoreticians.One contribution of this dissertation lies in a discussion and identification of TQM as an ongoing process of fusion between western and eastern ways of seeing, interpreting, understanding, thinking and doing. As a result of this ongoing process of fusion, the synthetic theory of TQM came to embrace both a rationai/logical approach and a holistic/dynamic approach. The rationai/logical approach is a heritage from the western tradition transmitted by western theoreticians' ideas, and the holistic/dynamic/ humanistic approach is a heritage of eastern tradition, transmitted by Japanese practices. The strength of TQM, which at the same time can be a disadvantage, lies in this dual or multiple frameworks of an objectivist-rationalistic and a subjectivist-relativistic view. The framework of TQM is, thus, holistic as well as atomistic/reductionistic, human as well as mechanistic, and dynamic as well as static.Another contribution of this dissertation is the development of an alternative model for understanding human motivation. The 'Trinity model'¨is a step to incorporate spiritual needs into models of human motivation inspired by, my interpretation of, the view of learning and training in the TQM framework. The proposed motivaton model is in accordance with three overall and innate desires, and portrays human motivation as driven by biological, psychological and spiritual desires/need. The spiritual dimension comprises ethical elements, like trust, faurness, openness, helpfulness, searching for and creating meaning, which earlier have not been explicit recognized in models for human motivation.

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