Quality Progress - July 2016 - 50

QUALITY IN THE FIRST PERSON BY JUAN D. LOERA SR. In Layman's Terms Explaining the quality profession to an outsider consequences of poor grades. I WAS RECENTLY asked a question by the controls and verification tools that my son, who was about to enter his first help ensure our processes are function- "The data we collect let us know year of university. "Dad, what is it you ing correctly and producing acceptable whether our organization is passing or really do at work?" he asked, "and what outputs. I help department leaders assess failing so we can make adjustments as degree did you get to become a quality the accuracy of the data they use to make necessary to get back on track. Part of manager?" business decisions and track trends to this data analysis includes identifying ar- verify that operations are moving toward eas that we can do better in by identifying our organization's goals." wasteful processes or process outcomes I was happy my son wanted to know more about what I do, and his question sounded sincere. I also considered that he That comment was met with a blank that do not meet our expectations. "When a faulty process is discovered, I was facing the hard decision about what stare. He didn't ask any questions, but I he wanted to pursue in university and as knew the facial expression all too well; he lead the team members in charge of that a career. had no idea what I meant. I continued: process through discussions to pinpoint "The information that we use to un- areas for improvement. We use different What we do derstand how our organization is doing tools to help collect and organize our facts "Well, I work with members from all areas is much like a report card at school. You and ideas to better plan our approach. of our organization to ensure they have know how well you are doing in a class the tools they need to successfully do their based on the grade that you are given for Why is it important job. I help update the systems that provide the output of your work. "Part of the pursuit for a healthy profit guidance to efficiently and effectively "The grades are set up on a scale so margin comes from being able to know execute our organization's processes. that you can see if you are passing or when organizational processes are That way, we can ensure our customers failing; and at what level you are actu- negatively affecting profits and identifying receive a product that not only meets their ally passing-A is excellent and D is just challenges that cause an organization to expectations, but also provides a delight- barely passing. If your grades suffer that go over budget. Many times, this is not ob- ful experience. means your output is becoming unaccept- vious because we can get a little distract- "I assist in auditing processes against able. You have to decide whether to work ed by daily routines and our own wasteful standardized procedures and help develop harder, get help to do better or suffer the practices that are not necessarily the best approach to doing our jobs," I said. My son's expression changed and I could tell that he was beginning to understand the quality profession. He then asked, "So what kind of tools do you use?" I knew that explaining all the tools in The Quality Technician's Handbook by Gary Griffith or The Quality Toolbox by Nancy Tague would entail a pretty lengthy conversation. I figured I would try connecting it back to a type of problem solving he understood. "The tools we use are more of a logical thinking guide. We take different approaches, depending on the situation and the scope of the potential impact. 50 QP * www.qualityprogress.com http://www.qualityprogress.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Quality Progress - July 2016

Up Front
LogOn
Expert Answers
Keeping Current
Mr. Pareto Head
A Quick Study
Clear Pathway
Pulling It All Together
Dead or Alive
Innovation Imperative
Measure for Measure
Quality in the First Person
Career Corner
Standards Outlook
ASQ's Continuing Education and Profesional Development Directory
QP Toolbox
QP Reviews
One Good Idea
Back to Basics

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