A total quality management consultant is an experienced professional who uses knowledge and experience to help business professionals to improve the ways in which their organizations function and the quality of products and services they provide. To become a total quality management consultant, your first step should be to receive academic training in best management principles and practices. While you might not need to get a graduate degree, you should attend professional development courses, especially in total quality management philosophy, throughout your career. You are probably going to have trouble finding clients unless you have many years' experience as a successful manager, so you should begin gaining as much leadership experience as possible.
Professionals who practice total quality management believe that customer satisfaction should dictate all of an organization's functions. It is common for proponents of total quality management to encourage constant improvement. In other words, from a total quality perspective, there is never such a thing as a perfect system. Instead, all professionals in an organization are expected to look for ways to increase productivity and improve quality.
Once you have received the basic education necessary to become a total quality management consultant, your next step should be to work your way towards your first management position. As you are working toward promotions, it's important that you continue to explore the total quality philosophy. Different takes on this philosophy are purported by a great number of books and in different classes. While you may not immediately need to choose a perspective on this philosophy, you should become familiar with popular viewpoints.
To become a total quality management consultant, it might not be enough to be an experienced manager. As a consultant, you might end up working with executives and business owners who want you to help restructure their whole organizations. Founding your own business or moving into an executive position in a successful company might be necessary.
If you want to become a total quality management consultant, but you are more interested in scholarship, you should pursue a high level degree, such as a doctorate degree. As you research issues related to total quality management philosophies, you should publish papers, articles, and perhaps even write a book. Without the professional experience to show potential clients that your ideas have practical applications, you need to develop a reputation in other ways. By creating a website and offering your services to smaller business, you can begin to build a client base.