Higher-quality products pay off big time in terms of reliability. This is especially critical when your safety is at stake or the item is in frequent use.
Corporate executives and consumers have in recent years adopted divergent views of product quality. Several recent surveys indicate how wide the quality perception gap is:
Three out of five principal directors of the country’s largest, 300 companies said in a 1981 check that quality is perfecting; only 13 said it’s declining. 1 Yet 49 of consumers surveyed in a separate 1981 study noted that the quality ofU.S. products had declined once five times. In addition, 59 anticipated quality to stay down or decline further in the forthcoming five times.2
Half the directors of major American appliance manufacturers said in a 1981 check that the trustability of their products had bettered in recent times. Only 21 ofU.S. consumers expressed that belief.3
directors ofU.S. bus manufacturers cite internal records that show quality to be perfecting each time. “ Ford quality bettered by 27 in our 1981 models over 1980 models, ” said a Ford superintendent.4 But checks show that consumers perceive the quality ofU.S. buses to be declining compared to imported buses, particularly those from Japan.
aware of this gap, numerousU.S. companies have turned to promotional tactics to ameliorate their quality image. similar sweats are apparent in two trends. The first is the lesser emphasis announcements place on the word quality and on similar themes such as trustability, continuity, and workmanship. Ford, for case, advertises that “ quality is job one, ” and Levi Strauss proposes that “ quality noway goes out of style. ” And numerous advertisements now claim that products are “ the stylish ” or “ better than ” challengers ’.