You are asking the right question, I replied.
I think that quality people are sometimes their own worst enemies when they focus on the bureaucratic aspect of the Quality Management System and try enforcing it as an end in itself. I used to be irritated by an Engineering manager who told me that what I was asking for was b-s. He would ask, what is the value add? He was right, of course, and today I am grateful for the irritating challenges he repeatedly presented. Can we join the dots between our QMS and the effectiveness, reliability and efficiency of our processes to produce good quality products and services that consistently exceed customer expectations? This, I believe, is the message we need to be getting across because then there should be dots connecting to cost effectiveness or, at least, to a door into the discussion on the relationship between quality and profitability.
At a minimum this requires that our processes be periodically reviewed by stakeholders for waste and for pain points. Is there a better way? Such reviews create opportunities for preaching quality as needing to be effective, reliable and efficient.