Suicide: The Cost of Poor Quality?

Perhaps Zhang Shuhong's taking of his own life will convince others in China's toy business to think twice before shipping contaminated products. According to MSNBC, Shuhong "committed suicide, a state-run newspaper said Monday ... Zhang Shuhong, who ran the Lee Der Industrial Co. Ltd., killed himself at a warehouse over the weekend, days after China announced it had temporarily banned exports by the company, the Southern Metropolis Daily said." In my view, even though suicide is never admirable -- or acceptable, as it has been in some Asian cultures historically -- perhaps this will serve as the wake-up call that other low-cost, low-margin margin suppliers need to hear about the seriousness with which the Chinese authorities are coming down on individuals associated with scandals. Clearly, the pressure Shuhong felt was not just coming from shareholders or his customers.

Jason Busch

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