Sustainability, Quality and Safety

A little more than a month later, the company has recalled more than 8.5 million vehicles and is currently considering a further recall of 1.3 million Toyota Corollas, the world’s top selling car. Recalls have also extended to several Lexus models.

Toyota’s image has shifted from innovative leader to one where trust in the quality and safety of their products is in serious question. While taking action to identify and address malfunctions, the company and its president, Akio Toyoda, have come under fire for not publicly responding sooner. Toyoda has since been more public including visiting sites in the U.S.

Toyota announced this week that it is taking a comprehensive approach to quality including appointing a chief quality officer for each principal geographic region. These officers will serve on the newly created Special Committee for Global Quality, which reports to President Toyoda. Toyota is also enhancing its ability to gather and convey customer input to its Quality Group and Product Development Group.

Damage to its once sterling reputation for quality is reflected in declining sales and stock price. Can Toyota come back from this? Time will tell. If they take a systemic approach toward safety, quality and customer satisfaction, I believe they can. Toyota may be on the hot seat right now, but they don’t hold the record for recalls. According to U.S. Recall News, that dubious honor goes to Ford Motors, who has recalled over 20 million vehicles since the NHTSA started keeping records.

Sources:
“Ford Recall History Puts Toyota Recalls in Perspective” February 16, 2010, U.S. Recall News

“Toyota probes Corolla steering, considers recall” By YURI KAGEYAMA, AP Business Writer February 17, 2010

Source: TMC Details Approach to Quality-Related Matters
February 17, 2010

Comments

Paul said:

The old saying that "It takes years to build a reputation, and seconds to destroy it" certainly appears to be the case with Toyota. But it is equally true that everyone and every organization will, at some point, face adversity. It is in how we deal with adversity rather than success that ultimately determines survival. Thought post. Thank you for your insights.

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