Quality Around the Clock… Quality professionals take it personal

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The American Society for Quality (ASQ) just posted their November Quality Progress feature that shares various stories regarding how quality professionals incorporate all that quality goodness into their personal lives.  From 5S for household chores to root cause analysis in relationships, I think these examples are great!

As we kick off World Quality Month this week, I think seeing the value of incorporating quality into our daily lives is the perfect place to start to raise awareness.  Of course, I submitted my own personal account of how I incorporate quality into our daily lives here at the Stepniowski pad.  My little contribution includes:

Setting Up Summer Fun

As summer break approaches each year, my kids know there’s a process to organizing how their time will be spent. This process was developed after realizing the tools I use at work were the solution to avoiding months of chaos, boredom and unmet expectations.

First, I ask everyone to brainstorm independently and generate some ideas about what it is they would like to do. I tell them to go all out and even include the craziest ideas they can imagine. My son once added he would like to visit the moon. Why not?

After the lists are completed, we use an affinity diagram to narrow down and group activities. With this, the kids don’t argue as much over who gets what. Everyone gets a voice—even parents. I take over with some mom kung fu after this to make things happen.

Aside from summer, our family uses checklists on a regular basis to make sure objectives are set and met. We even have a checklist for going to the beach! Incorporating quality tools into our everyday lives means we spend less time trying to figure how to get stuff done and more time having fun doing it.

In recognition of World Quality Month, I’m setting some goals:

1) Make it a point to sneak in something about quality to people not involved in the industry.  For starters, I’ll be sharing the Quality Around the Clock stuff with Facebook friends and family.   I actually got some great ideas reading those stories.  5S is applicable in more ways than I imagined!

2) I want to make sure the people I work with appreciate and understand the importance of quality and the indisputable benefits. Because I manage our organization’s social media that connects our team as well as clients, this is a no-brainer.

3) I’m announcing World Quality Month in my classes next week, and I want to ask students to consider three ways they could incorporate quality into their lives.  I’ll offer extra credit for incentive.

4) I’ve decided to volunteer as Education Chair for my local ASQ section.  Helping others understand and appreciate quality is well worth the time. And, I enjoy talking about it anyway!

Rather than focus on ensuring quality at work this month, I want to turn my awareness to the more personal.

After all these years, I still face challenges when explaining what I do to people outside of the industry.  We need to change this perception that quality is a bonus rather than something that’s expected.  If we start expecting it from others, we’ll likely make sure we’re walking the walk as well.  Imagine all of the significant and real improvements we could make!

Happy World Quality Month!

Learn more through ASQ here.

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