Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Rodney P. Rice, PhD

Second Advisor

Guy S. Shane, PhD


Total Quality (TQ) is a philosophy that is currently being incorporated by organizations throughout America. TQ philosophers maintain that Total Quality can be achieved only if organizations change their cultures, including the traditional view toward the role of the performance appraisal. Theses experts maintain that the traditional performance appraisal does not promote process improvement, empowerment and team building as TQ prescribes. This thesis is a Delphi study of the performance appraisal practices of Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award winning companies. The study attempts to describe the performance appraisal practices of 10 companies who have successfully implemented TQ. The existence of traditional and TQ appraisal characteristics is measured and the performance appraisal techniques of the organizations are benchmarked. The study determines that, with little exception, these companies still employ many traditional approaches to their performance appraisals, but have altered some practices by incorporating new techniques to promote process improvement, employee empowerment and team building. The unique practices and characteristics of these organizations are presented.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number



Co-authored thesis.

The authors' Vita pages are omitted.

Presented to the Faculty of the School of Logistics and Acquisition Management of the Air Force Institute of Technology.