By Sid  Chadwick – 09/07/18
Published in American Printer

“I walked into the production area and asked an employee who was cutting vinyl lettering for a car dealership what the customer would be using them for.  The reply came back that she had no idea…. Yesterday,  I saw a similar job and asked the same person the same question. Her response was that it wasn’t her job to know what the client was using the job for, and she shouldn’t have to do everyone else’s work…….I had to walk away…..!”……CEO Of A Wide-Format Supplier

INTRODUCTION:

May I see a copy of that employee’s last written Performance Review…?

Who is each employee… here…. to serve…..and are we clear on what this organization is centrally here to do…….?

Opportunities for lessons……captured…….and learned…….can be used to increase future reliability…and profitability………are endless………..

To the unaware organization, opportunities to increase profitability, whether or not revenues increase — are everywhere.

In a previous life, at extreme, frustrating moments,  I would ask myself,  If  I don’t have bad people…. what have I not yet initiated…. to improve what we could be accomplishing?

profitsThere was always something else we could develop….to insure performance improvement….. reliability……and an improved bottom line.

The irony was that increased reliability…. would also tend to lead to Increased Revenues….…as well as increased profitability……!

What are you measuring?….And Reporting….. in each Department….?

Are there written standards and instructions….that personnel understand, and support? (e.g., On both your “Request for Estimate” and your “Job Ticket”, is the writer expected to answer, “How is this project expected to be used…?”…..which of course…. is useful information for every department….!)

Do we capture errors (and “almost errors”)…. and share and review those errors — with everyone?

(Does management share the errors they make, or almost make…..as public  testimony that the entire organization…is on a mission….. of performance improvement…?)

What does our Monthly (or Biweekly….!) Quality Performance Review…. look like, that everyoneattends…and especially New Employees  — who are expected to review and discuss that Portfolio …. Before…. ever touching a customer’s project. (I called it my “FUBR Porfolio” — “fouledup… beyond recognition”.)

Everyone attends?….. Yes…… everyone attends……because where an error shows-up…is often…not…. where the error was created….!

SUMMARY:

Almost every corner of an organization could stand improvement. And when one item, one process….is improved….it tends to lead to recognition that there’s….”something else”….needing to be improved.

One client, for major Customer Proposals, had a section titled, “The TOP 25 Performance Improvements — Initiated…in the last 24 months…. With  Customers’ Benefits.”……That section seemed to always get read by the target prospect.

Changing focus a bit, I believe there are few bad employees…though there can be an employee who’s in the wrong position for their talents……

And if written instruction…and….education and training….are a meaningful part of an organization’s culture…. customers will notice.

Finally, it was my observation that conscientious employees deeply appreciated an employer who was committed to development of their talents and performance, and their associates’ talents and performance……How senior management cared about them, and their future……was visible…..and real…..

No one said developing a great organization would be easy……If it were easy, there would be no honor in it……!

“If you don’t think you can afford frequent, systematic education and training, you probably don’t realize that you’re already paying for it…..you just don’t get to enjoy the benefits….!”…..Allie Hutchson, Sr. CEO, Hutchison Allgood Printing Co.

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