In an article in Sloan Management Review Garvin gives as one of the definitions of (product) quality, that some people say quality is value for money. However, that still does not help much, if you try to find a universal definition. Different stakeholders might value different ‘qualities’ of the product. That made me, years ago, stop trying to find a universal definition of quality.
In blog #25 I mentioned that I was invited to visit Van Bommel’s shoe factory and enjoyed the way they produce quality. I was introduced to a special way of stitching shoes, the Goodyear-way. This method connects the upper side of the shoe with the shoe sole using pitch thread. That makes it stronger and easier to repair, if in the end the (leather) sole would need to be replaced. The method is used less and less, because people prefer e.g. sneakers, apparently without a leather sole. Doing things in the best way is not always wanted by customers…..
However, last Saturday I managed to buy my first Goodyear shoes. I choose a traditional brogue model. Frans Van Bommel, former CEO of the company, gratulated me with my purchase: “I bought one of the best shoes out of their collection”. Thanks to Wout van Bommel for making this happen. Being able to buy quality can make someone happy… (for a while).