Quality Exclusives

ISO 9000 Conference Celebrates 15 Years

ORLANDO, FL-Customer satisfaction and financial performance are undoubtedly key areas to focus on for a successful business, but attaining these goals is sometimes difficult. The 2007 International Conference on ISO 9000 addressed these issues and offered a current and comprehensive technical program, as well as networking opportunities for attendees. The conference and workshops, February 25 to 28, were held at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort, Orlando, FL. The conference was broken down into sessions, with 14 separate session.The conference, “Management Systems Evolution: Driving Your Business…Uniting the World,” included topics such as performance excellence, human potential, innovation and motivation, and transformational leadership. Khurshed Kutky of QMI described some of his customer service experiences and how attendees could learn from them. After shopping around for the lowest price, Kutky took his car in for some repairs. The repair shop offered a replacement car while the work was being done, which he took advantage of, and they picked him up after the repairs were completed. However, once he got his car back, Kutky noticed some damage to the mirror that wouldn’t come off. He took the car back several weeks later and asked if they could fix it. The staff attempted to remove it, but said it would require a replacement mirror, at the cost of several hundred dollars. Kutky was not happy about this, but they assured him that because it happened in their shop, they could replace it for free. By dealing with the problem immediately, the shop gained a loyal customer and positive word-of-mouth advertising. Craig Cochran, North Metro Atlanta region manager at Georgia Tech Enterprise Innovation Institute, discussed the four C’s of leadership-clarity, communication, credibility and character-and how to hone leadership skills, while Meryl Runion, founder and CEO of SpeakStrong Inc., told attendees how to “Take the Tedium Out of Technical” when conveying information. Rai Chowdhary, president and CEO of Team 2000, used props to highlight the difference between quality managers and top management, and Richard Hadfield, technical services manager of The National Standards Authority of Ireland, discussed a variety of international standards. Hadfield was one of many international attendees, as the conference brought people from across the United States and the world, including guests from Geneva, Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur. The conference also attracted attendees from a wide range of backgrounds and interests. Sectors represented at the conference included aerospace, defense, government, automotive, chemicals, construction, electronics, energy, equipment, food and beverage, information technology, medical devices, metals, mining, optical, recycling, rubber and plastic products, textiles and transportation. Exhibitors offered products and services to help businesses with ISO standards, whether it was document control software or training and consulting services. A Lean and Six Sigma conference, February 28 to March 1, was held immediately following the ISO conference, and at the same hotel. Attendees could stay over for an additional day or two, and learn the latest on Lean and Six Sigma. www.iso9000conference.com

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