18, 1926 August 18, 2001
distinguished career of Mr. Philip B. Crosby (1926-2001) is eminent throughout
the global quality community. For over 35 years, Mr. Crosby was both an illustrious
philosopher and pragmatic practitioner of quality management. His writings have
helped to stimulate international interest in the quality field that was a catalyst
for a global awakening and driver for a worldwide movement that matured over the
past two decades. His innovative thinking and creative outlook on quality management
have been the inspiration for thousands of companies around the world. Mr. Crosby
made many significant contributions to the core quality body of quality knowledge
and served as an international ambassador extending the influence of quality thinking
to the furthest parts of the globe. One area emphasized throughout Mr. Crosbys
career was his focus on clear communication of the message of quality. Mr. Crosby
considered himself a writer and communicator who plainly spoke his message and
reached a broad audience because of his clear and pragmatic writing style.
Crosbys contributions and service are known throughout the global quality
community and his influence has spanned the world at the level of international
B. Crosby worked to significantly advance the cause of the worldwide quality movement
through his many personal contributions over the past four decades. He developed
pragmatic concepts that are considered foundational elements of the body of quality
knowledge, including his Four Absolutes of Quality Management:
means conformance to requirements, not goodness.
is achieved by prevention, not appraisal.
has a performance standard of Zero Defects, not acceptable quality levels.
is measured by the Price of Nonconformance, not indexes.
Crosby was born in Wheeling, West Virginia on June 18, 1926.
Crosbys working life began after tours of duty during World War II and the
Korean Conflict with education at medical school in between.
worked for Crosley from 19521955; for Bendix Mishawaka from 1955
1957; and Martin-Marietta from 19571965. In 1964, he received the Distinguished
Civilian Service Medal from the Department of the Army in 1964 to recognize his
development of the concept of Zero Defects. He served under ITT CEO Harold Geneen
as Corporate Vice President of Quality from 1965-1979, when he established his
own consulting firm.
book Quality is Free was one of the initial signals of the decade of quality in
the 1980s when quality emerged as a viable career and work movement. It
sold over 2 million copies.
1979 he founded Philip Crosby Associates, Inc. (PCA), and over the next ten years
grew it into a publicly traded organization with 300 employees around the world
and $100 million dollars in revenue. Through PCAs Quality College,
management learned how to establish a preventive culture to get things done right
the first time. GM, Chrysler, Motorola, Xerox, many hospitals, and hundreds of
corporations worldwide came to PCA to understand quality management. His philosophies
have been ingrained into the fiber of these corporations both large and small.
- In 1991
he retired from PCA and founded Career IV, Inc., a company that provided lectures
and seminars aimed at helping current and prospective executives grow.
- In 1997
he purchased the assets of PCA and established Philip Crosby Associates II, Inc.
(PCA II). The Quality College continues to operate in over 20
countries around the world.
Crosby authored 13 books on quality that have been translated into 17 languages
and have sold millions of copies in both hard and soft cover. Some of his most
important books include:
the Cost of Quality, 1967
Is Free: The Art of Making Quality Certain, 1979
Without Tears: The Art of Hassle-Free Management, 1984
Things: The Art of Making Things Happen, 1986
Eternally Successful Organization, 1988
Talk Quality, 1989
The Art of Becoming an Executive, 1990
Quality for the 21st Century, 1992
on Quality, 1995
Is Still Free, 1996
Absolutes of Leadership, 1997
and Me: Lessons of an Evolving Life, 1999
Crosby held an undergraduate degree from the Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine,
honorary law degrees from Wheeling College and Rollins College, and an honorary
Doctor of Corporate Management from the University of Findlay.
B. Crosby was a business philosopher with more than 40 years of hands-on management
experience. He taught management how to cause their organizations, their employees,
their suppliers, and themselves to be successful.