Our Individual Role in Raising the Quality Status Quo

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only useful quality-wise and otherwise to the extent that we accomplish what is best for our clients. We need to always be cognizant of our relationships with others–employees on our teams and company-wide, clients, and service providers - and what bearing that has on our jobs, our products, and the quality of both. When we positively approach change and quality we actively set an example and statement to others that it is 1) desirable, 2) possible, and 3) will occur. Effective communication, by our words and by our actions, at all levels is necessary for us to play useful roles in quality.

A–Attitude–proactive, positive, and forward-looking–helps accomplish quality.
Often we get so busy doing our jobs that we are heads-down and don’t necessarily think in terms of quality of the long-term effects of what we are doing. When we attempt to gain and maintain an overall attitude of quality we are more likely to accomplish that goal. This is hard but the challenges are usually the things in life that grow us. We can grow quality. We must grow quality because it is essential to our products, our processes, and ourselves.

L–Learn and apply quality at all stages of the development cycle.
Notice I didn't say quality principles or quality practices but quality because quality entails both of those as well as the best we can give to our roles in the quality effort. Learning about quality is not a one-time thing to gain certification but an on-going process. The more we learn the better we get at it and the more we realize what we can and need to apply to each stage of the development process is essential to the overall level of quality in our products and processes. We must continually review–whether formally or not–whether our quality practices and processes are cost-effective and work toward the ultimate goal or not. That review may be individual, group, or corporate and conscious or just a part of doing our jobs but it is necessary for effective quality.

I–Improvement, motivated by our desire for it, drives meaningful accomplishment.
As with anything in life whether it be athletics, financial goals, work goals, health goals, or other personal goals, we only succeed in meaningful accomplishment when we are motivated by our own personal desire for improvement. Others can tell us what we need to do but only when we desire it will we accomplish the goal. Many challenges may get in our way on a daily basis and we may be tempted to put aside our goals. Sometimes that putting aside is appropriate but often our determination to stay the course is ultimately what brings about a goal we might not otherwise accomplish. It is very important in any organization that our goals ultimately lead us in the same direction so we need to assess our goals in the light of corporate goals. Sometimes we don’t see the overall purpose and must communicate effectively in all directions and at all levels to insure that everyone involved knows the goals and how we can best achieve them.

T–Training, appropriate and applied, is essential to progress.
In our changing world training is always necessary. Training may take on different forms such as taking classes in groups or individually, attending conferences, or personal development by surfing quality web sites or reading professional journals or books. The point is that training is effective when we seek it, learn from it, apply it, assess it, understand the value and essential nature of it, and encourage others by sharing what you’ve learned.

Y–Your conscious daily steps lead to

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