Total Quality Management: Analysis of Reeds Exhibition

Total Quality Management: Analysis of Reeds Exhibition

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Total Quality Management: Reeds Exhibition


The term quality has often been applied to refer to the measures undertaken by the organization to meet the needs and expectations of the consumer (Feigenbaum, 2002 p. 56). For an item to be considered quality, it must fully meet the performance, appearance, reliability, and availability of the consumer among other things. This paper will analyze the various elements of total quality management on the Reeds Exhibition Company. The selection was made based on their glowing reputation as well as outstanding performance in the events industry hence making a good case study of some of the TQM measures that they have adopted.

Total quality Management

Total quality management is a management approach where the members in the organization work to improve the processes, products, services, and culture of their organization. Total quality management is customer focused and often it involves the continual improvement of all employees (Feigenbaum, 2002 p. 56). Total quality management (TQM) adopts measures like effective communication, and adequate strategies to integrate quality discipline into the culture and activities of the organization. TQM is construed towards promoting customer satisfaction every stage of production (Feigenbaum, 2002 p. 56).

Total quality management process is centred on the provision of quality and ensuring that all stakeholders’ needs and expectations are met effectively without in any way compromising the ethical values of the organization. However, it is important to note that the use of adopting total quality management is not limited to quality assurance, quality control as well as continuous improvement. TQM is also construed towards creating a culture of quality in the organization with the customer at the centre of this process.

According to Yusof and Aspinwall (1999), TQM has resulted from the organizational need to improve the understanding of the critical elements that affect the success of the organization. Yusof and Aspinwall (1999), further note that measuring quality is, however, the main challenge towards total quality management. Powell (2006), on the other hand, notes that TQM is a source of sustainable competitive advantage in any organization. Some of the features associated with TQM in an organization entail quality, process improvement, training, as well as benchmarking. However, as Powel (2006) indicates, these do not necessarily guarantee a competitive advantage rather they have to be accompanied by an executive commitment, culture, and employee empowerment to produce the desired competitive advantage.

TQM is primarily concerned with the continuous improvement of all the work in the organization. It targets to continuously improve results in the organization as well as improve the capabilities, processes and capabilities of the organization towards fulfilling the customer requirements. TQM focusses not just on improving the current results in the organization; rather it targets the future results as well.

Introduction to business enterprise: The Reeds Exhibition

Reeds exhibition is a public company that was founded in 1968. The company has subsidiaries in at least 41 countries including UK, France, Australia, Russia, Brazil and the Middle East. However, the company’s headquarters in Richmond England. The company deals primarily in exhibitions, conferences as well as the planning of key events worldwide. Currently, the company has over 3500 employees worldwide. As of 2014, Reeds exhibition had managed events that had cumulatively brought together over 7 million people from all over the world. Their portfolio also has over 500 events so far with more scheduled for the future. Currently, they are considered the world’s largest exhibition organizer and they are seeking to explore other regions like Asia alongside other emerging markets. Mike Rusbridge, who acts as the company chairperson, currently heads the company while Chet Burchett executes the CEO duties.

Evaluation of Reeds enterprise and their TQM activities

TQM operates under several principles namely: Management Support/Involvement, Mission Statement, Proper Planning, Customer and Bottom Line Focus, Measurement, Empowerment/Shared Leadership, Teamwork/Effective Meetings, Continuous Process Improvement, and Dedicated Resources/Training. These are analysed below on Reeds Exhibition.

1) Management Committee

Their roles are to plan, deploy, review, and recognize any areas that need improvement in the organization. The management in the company is also very bureaucratic with the top management delegating more responsibilities on their juniors. For example, a manager is held directly responsible for his group of employees, while the team leader is held directly responsible for the operations and performance of tier team. This keeps the things in the organization simple and organized since the flow of command is concise and closer to the people.

2) Mission Statement

Total quality management, as indicated in subsequent sections, is a system of management that is aimed at ensuring the quality of work and organization gives is high in quality. It seeks to improve the performance of all facets of the organization. Reeds Enterprise, to achieve this TQM, they have to integrate all processes and functions in the organization and streamline them to their missions, vision and goals as an organization. The company envisions delivering contacts, content, and communities with the power to transform their customers’ businesses. This forms the essence of what the company does as they strive to ensure their customers have up to date information, with access to more education and innovation. More so, they work to bring people together for their professional and personal benefit. Reeds exhibition, therefore, offers their customers a chance to adopt dramatic change as well as to help them grow in their respective fields. More so, they envision drawing industries together and under a common banner to foster relationships amongst them.

3) Customer and Bottom Line Focus

The management must ensure that they service their relationships with internal customers. This can be guaranteed by ensuring they never compromise on the quality of the products and services as well as the customer driven standards (Easton and Jarrell 1998, p. 290). The company values are construed towards promoting customer focus. The company is a service industry and the services they provide ae responsible for the returns the get. This means they are driven by the customer needs and their demands. TQM Is construed towards promoting customer satisfaction and in Reeds exhibition, the same is true. For instance, the company is keen to provide their customers with superior quality programs. Professionalism has also helped to ensure their customer needs are well taken care of and that our customers get the highest level of quality and excellence from them. Apart from these, Reeds exhibition is committed to helping to promote the growth of all their customers helping them organize events that will not just transform them, but also trigger an increase in their return on investment. This included improved performance, brand building, education, as well as sourcing.

4) Employee Empowerment and teamwork

Employee empowerment entails raining them to meet the set standards as well as creating excellence teams to oversee the performance of the different work groups (Kanji et al., 1999, p. 130). The company needs to ensure they invest in their human resource to ensure total quality. Easton and Jarrell (1998, p. 254) note that it entails placing priority on recruiting and retaining only the best people in the industry. At Reeds Exhibition, the managers are directly responsible for hiring the new employees in the organization as well as training them in their respective departments to ensure this. This direct responsibility helps to promote the performance of the employee who has to work under extra hard to maximize their performance and increase their input in the organization (Bowdin et al., 2006). Projects in the company are also carried out in teams where the team leader is given the direct responsibility for the people under him. This puts pressure on the team leader who then has to ensure that his team performance meets the expected demand in the organization. This also empowers the employees once they are given more responsibilities they can grow in their positions as well as harness their leadership skills.

The company also recognizes the need to respect and encourage their employees. This is achieved through regular team building exercises where the people are engaged to ensure their plight is taken into consideration. More so, the company ensures there is open and honest communication between them top management and the lower level employees (Choudhary, 2010). This has promoted the efficacy of the company. The reason for this is that a motivated and encouraged workforce tends to perform better compared to one where the workforce is not motivated (Choudhary, 2010).

5) Continuous Process Improvement

As noted in Kanji et al., (1999, p. 130), continuous improvement encompasses ensuring that the cross-functional process of management and the systematic focus on CONQ is up to the expected standards (Lal, 2009, p. 67). It also requires that the management ensure they attain, maintain, and improve their production standards to suit their stakeholders’ needs.

As indicated in Lal, 2009, (p. 67), a company’s passion for winning in all their performances is also a major driving force. Reeds Exhibition is in a very competitive industry that demands high energy, decisive action, as well as fast moving projects. This ensures that the company meets the customer targets and deadlines within the period allocated. It also ensures that they execute all their projects well, with regular reviews from the customers to ensure their needs are met to the last detail (Bowdin et al., 2006).

Easton and Jarrell (1998, p. 254) note that the one thing that sets companies apart from the rest is their desire for change. Reeds Exhibition embraces change as it happens and this includes being innovative in their dealings with their customers as well as other employees (Accreditation Organization, 2013). For example, Reeds Exhibition encourages their employees to be more entrepreneurial and risk takers. Being risk averse in the industry slows down the progress of the company as well as limits their degree of creativity. More so, thy encourage their employees to make bold decisions and bold moves and think outside the box since this is what can give them the competitive advantage they need to excel in the industry.

A flexible approach towards service delivery has seen them grow as a company. It has also capitalized on its partnerships to get more customers. For example, the company has a joint venture with the Vision Council of America where they organize Vision events in Chicago, Las Vegas, and New York. The relationship with the Society of Petroleum Engineers opens them up to other opportunities in offshore Europe while their relationship with Asia has seen them be licensed to organize Asia-Pacific Incentive and Meetings Expo (AIME).

6) Dedicated Resources and training

The company also has a robust research and marketing team that are constantly looking for new markets and new ideas. This keeps them at the top of the industry as they familiarize themselves to the industry needs as well as the industry trends. By getting first-hand information on the changing market trends, they can stay ahead of their competitors. The company has subsidiaries in at least 41 countries worldwide, and they are still planning to venture into other emerging markets. The global nature of their business thus ensures that people work collaboratively across different business units and functions. It has also increased the partnership of the company with other countries globally.

7) Proper Planning and strategic alliances

The company has formed alliances with various other joint ventures. Kaynak, (2003 p. 407) notes that proper implementation of TQM strategies results in improved firm performance. Reeds Exhibition can provide their clientele with the best o services the industry can offer through their close supplier relationships. The company also has a robust team of experts who complement their in-house teams. They have also formed alliances with publishers’ worldwide a good example being the Reed Huabo: an alliance that saw the company work with representatives from China and Shenshen Sinexpo. This has made it possible for them to extend their market to other parts of the world. In addition to these, they have a steady relationship with trade associations, which has given them access to both domestic, and export markets.

They also have government alliances, which helps them to interact with both the local and national government opening them up for new opportunities. For example, they have a long-term contract with the city of Vienna to organize the exhibition centre at Messe Wien as well as the city of Cannes to organize the Palais des addition to these they have a 50/50 partnership with CPEC where they are involved in organizing the Sinopharm in China. They also enjoy the endorsement of many government ministries worldwide because of their exceptional work and professionalism.


Total quality management is important in ensuring the company remains competitive in the market. It ensures that the customer needs are met in the best manner possible as well as the enterprise of growing. As noted in the case of Reeds Exhibitions, the company has adopted various measures to ensure they remain competitive in the market. Some of the notable ones include ensuring they deliver quality to the consumers, ensuring their human resource is well serviced and is represented by individuals who are capable of meeting the everyday needs of the organization. They also have formed strategic alliances to aid in their growth and expansion to other emerging markets. Their leadership style is bureaucratic which helps to motivate the employees as well as ensure they remain innovative and creative. This has helped to keep Reeds exhibition among the top events companies in the world.

Reference List

Accreditation Organization. 2013, January 28. Continuous improvement. Retrieved November 22 2015, from Aged Care Standards and Accreditation Agency:

Bowdin, G., O’Toole, W., Allen, J., Harris, R., & McDonnell, I. 2006. Events management. Routledge.

Choudhary, M., 2010, September 4. Role of Effective Communication in Total Quality management. Retrieved November 22, 2015, from Academia:

Easton, G. S., & Jarrell, S. L., 1998. The effects of Total Quality Management on corporate performance: An empirical investigation*. The Journal of Business, 71(2), 253-307.

Feigenbaum, A. V., 2002. Total quality management. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Kanji, G. K., Malek, A., & Tambi, B. A. (1999). Total quality management in UK higher education institutions. Total Quality Management, 10(1), 129-153.

Kaynak, H., 2003. The relationship between total quality management practices and their effects on firm performance. Journal of operations management, 21(4), 405-435.

Lal, H., 2009. Total quality management: a practical approach. New Delhi, New Age International.

Yusof, S. R. M., & Aspinwall, E., 1999. Critical success factors for total quality management implementation in small and medium enterprises. Total Quality Management, 10(4-5), 803-809.

Powell, T. C., 2006. Total quality management as competitive advantage: a review and empirical study. Strategic management journal, 16(1), 15-37.


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