Crosby has a practical interesting writing style, where you feel included in the conversations as they occur. He covers his definition of quality and what quality is not... it has a good introduction to Quality Costs and how to apply those to your environment...I have already used his Quality Maturity Grid to get an idea of what level of maturity we are at. This book is amazingly practical, which you could pick up and read without any other exposure to Quality Mangement..of course if you have had exposure to the other gurus' such as Deming and Juran you will get just as much value by comparing the different methodogies and styles. It is a little dated with some terms (eg comptroller) and is very manufacturing based..but considering it is about 20yrs old and still completely relevant, it's doing pretty well. This book is a true bargin for the price, especially considering the amount of working-knowledge that Crosby has shared with us..
This book tells you about one of the most underused tools in the QA Manager's box of tricks - the Cost of Quality. Read this book with a view to understand this principle and Crosby gives some invaluable guidance on how to go about a Cost of Quality Initiative.
I have gone into job interviews with this trick up my sleeve when asking for a greater salary than they were offering and it opens peoples eyes.
Yes, it's dated and yes you need to take some of the definitions and bring them up to date. As with anything you should read many sources and take nothing as gospel.
A classic that at such a low cost now is a crime not to own. When folks see Quality is Free it sure prompts some interesting conversations too :)
If you need to have more insight into the world of quality in business, look no further (and especially at the bargain price of 22p plus delivery that I paid).
The book is 20 years old and much of its power has passed into best practice (e.g. Zero Defects), however this is the motherlode which helped trigger the change in mindset, and I was very impressed by the fact that it isn't an academic or a gimmicky read, but covers how to explain the need and even gives outline ideas for training sessions to help get the message accross to staff (one of which I have repurposed for my own needs).
Basically, if you are at all interested this is a must purchase.