Is there such a thing as Too Much Quality?

Question:  Do you have concerns about the cost or effort required for quality in your company?  

Let’s be honest — Quality Assurance (QA) often feels like, and is treated like, the unwanted step-child.  When Quality works well, the product always works in production flawlessly, or nearly so, no customers are unhappy, and it feels like all that time and effort spent in testing is unnecessary.  But, if Quality does not work well, then big (potentially business killing) problems show up in the field, and QA folks start to fear losing their jobs. Is it any wonder that so many experienced QA leads, feel “battle-hardened”, and even a bit cynical?  I get it!  I used to feel that way.  You get to the point where you equate being an Advocate for Quality with “holding back the tide”.  Becoming simply put, oppositional. I was a good Quality Lead, I would like to think very good.  Products in my area consistently had good quality in the field.  But, I still suffered from two deficits: 

• I treated Quality as binary:  “We either were committed to Quality or we weren’t.” 

• I failed to quantity and articulate the Business Case for Quality.   I learned an important lesson, but perhaps seems obvious, in retrospect:  Quality is but one dimension in the business decision.    

What do you think?