KM ASNI/ISO Standards Meeting LO20338

Vana Prewitt (
Sun, 10 Jan 1999 09:31:10 -0500

Replying to LO20335 --

Scott Simmerman wrote:

> Generally, I'm pretty easy going and not terribly paranoid. But then
> again, maybe they are out to get me.


> ISO has now been firmly established in the US. Interrestingly, the
> statistics on quality as captured by ASQ (they dropped the "C" two years
> ago) and University of Michigan have been consistently DROPPING as viewed
> by customers over the past few years. One can argue this many ways but
> ISO is certainly not a quality improvement effort. Maybe we need more
> certification?

I concur with Scott. I've also noticed that organizations purporting to
support quality assurance generally add to the bureaucracy and little to
quality. My favored model for quality assurance of any group claiming to
be "professionals" is the American Medical Association.

Before anyone decides to flame me, let me say that the AMA has lots of
problems that I'm well aware of. However, think about it from a quality
assurance perspective. They decided to regulate and monitor themselves as
a professional association (to get the jump on government efforts). They
also meet their own ongoing educational and training needs. They lobby in
Washington on behalf of their business interests. They provide a forum
for exchange of information, skills, insights, and knowledge. Not a bad
model (when it works).

The certification mania that seems to be sweeping the U.S. is a backlash
from companies who have felt that they trusted an untrustworthy consultant
of one type of another. They want to feel they can hold consultants to
some identifiable standard of excellence, and have a point of contact for
restitution if not satisfied.

If we understand the source of the behavior we can identify an intelligent
solution that meets everyone's needs.

Rick? I'd be interested in your thoughts on this.

kind regards,
Vana Prewitt
Praxis Learning Systems
Chapel Hill, NC

"investing in human capital"

[Host's Note: Hi Vana... No particular opinion about this. I'd ask what
are the benefits of standards, and what is the downside? The wonderful
internet that we enjoy is only possible because some very skilled people
engineers good standards many years ago before there was an internet.
... Rick]


Vana Prewitt <>

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