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I think I am sitting with God.
Such was the awestruck impression of one seminar attendee when he found himself sharing a luncheon table with Joseph Juran, the man whose name has become synonymous with the concept of quality. In the annals of business history, the name Juran resonates with near mythic status. This is the man whose thinking about quality and management revolutionized the way the world does business, a living legend who, along with a few other giants of our age, shaped the course of industrial history. Written with the support of Dr. Juran and the Juran Institute, Juran: A Lifetime of Influence gives us an intimate look at the man, his times, and the evolution of the concepts of quality and management that so profoundly affect business today.
Dr. Juran's remarkable story begins at the turn of the century in the Carpathian Mountains of Romania. Joseph Juran was born in a tiny village with unpaved streets and houses with dirt floors, a place that, in his own words, had no quality problems. His journey to America, in 1912, thrust him into a world of technological marvels, of ocean liners and ice cream, streetcars and flush toilets.
Poverty forced him into his first job at age nine, exposing him to work experiences and conditions that kindled his interest in finding better ways to get things done. John Butman's penetrating narrative explores Joseph Juran's early struggles against prejudice, and how-through chess, languages, algebra, and code-breaking-his genius for analysis and problem-solving emerged.
It was at Western Electric's Hawthorne Works, one of the great factories of the age, that Juran's lifework began to crystallize. An operation of exceptional size and complexity, Hawthorne gave Juran a visceral understanding of the bedrock issues of quality. He learned the sound of a machine malfunctioning, heard the complaints of a skilled operator betrayed by shoddy materials, and discovered the consequences of poor quality control. Then, in a dramatic turn of events, Juran was given the chance to put his innovative skills and ideas to use as an integral part of the Lend-Lease Administration effort in World War II. The immense and urgent undertaking allowed Juran to throw himself into the fight against the Nazis.
Joe Juran has led the quality cause from its earliest days. His progressive influence via this enlightening text will be virtually endless. -Robert W. Galvin Chairman of the Executive Committee, Motorola
As much as anyone in the field, Dr. Joseph M. Juran is a major influence in the business world's pursuit of quality. Juran: A Lifetime of Influence finally gives the great man his due. Quality gurus and greenhorns alike will find much to savor in this entertaining and educational book. -Robert A. Lutz Vice Chairman, Chrysler Corporation.
John Butman has captured the extraordinary spirit of one of America's most remarkable pioneers, Joseph M. Juran, in a wonderful text that reads almost like a novel. Here we get a true glimpse of some of the forces that have driven Dr. Juran for over 92 years and of his many breakthrough contributions to world business. -A. Blanton Godfrey Chairman, Juran Institute
This book provides an intimate look at Juran's personal life, while giving the reader a lucid understanding of his philosophy, teachings, and accomplishments. -G. Howland Blackiston Executive Producer of the PBS television documentary, An Immigrant's Gift
Juran: A Lifetime of Influence is a well-documented, easy-to-read biography of a remarkable man in a critical period of the twentieth century. Many hitherto untold anecdotes give us insight into Dr. Juran's influence on society. I recommend it not only to quality professionals and business managers, but also to the general public as well. -Yoshinao Nakada Technical Manager, Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies.