Our Quality Manifesto
what is quality?
Everyone expects quality, but what is quality and how is it measured? According to ISO 9000, quality is ‘the degree to which a commodity meets the requirements of the customer at the start of its life’. But does that cut it? Isn’t quality ongoing throughout its life – however long that should be.
Mike Sondalini of Lifetime Reliability Solutions HQ describes quality as;
“The minimum requirement of a specified performance standard. Quality is a specified performance range. Get into the range of required performance and you have ‘quality’. Both the most basic Toyota Corolla and a top-of-the-line Mercedes Benz are quality cars. They each have specific engineering design standards to meet, and once those standards are satisfied then quality is delivered”.
But is that enough? No! Quality is much more. If there are over 250 touch points in a business, then surely every touch point needs to exude quality. If each touch point is to be superlative, then every facet of an operation must be a concomitant component of the final good or service. Therefore, Aristotle was overwhelmingly right. Quality is not an act, it is a habit. You can read about touch points here.
Quality is the animus of
Quality is the animus of uncompromising passion. It’s the culmination of art and intellect. Its metier is perfection and those who behold its lustre are recherche indeed. True quality is forged on the anvil of artisan-ship; It speaks to the senses and captivates the heart. Its voice rings out through the ages and its legacy is preserved forever.
The nub of quality hinges on the senses. Sense is the nexus between touch, sight and sound. You touch it and you feel exhilaration. You see it and you comprehend excellence. You hear it, and it’s the sound of superior design and ingenuity. That’s the essence of quality.
And everyone perceives quality. Why do heads turn at the brief glimpse as a Rolls Royce or Bentley glides regally by? Why is it that you notice the Rolex or Omega watch but you don’t notice other less glamorous brands? Or you shamelessly salivate at the opulence of a mansion overlooking a beautiful harbor but pass by a lesser abode with nonchalance.
Our subconscious is programmed
to apprehend quality.
Our subconscious is programmed to apprehend quality. It’s called ‘unconscious awareness’. Everyone has it and it relates to Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. You can read more about this here.
So it is, that without quality, something is missing – even at a subconscious level. We may settle for cheapness, but it forever annoys us. The dodgy job, the malfunctioning product, the poor service.
It is well established that you can have cheap and service but not quality. Or service and quality but not cheap. The law of imperatives establishes that it is impossible to have all three. You can read more about this here.
Here are 6 ways to ensure that you are on top of the quality question
At Zanda, we take these principles seriously. So seriously that we have a check list of 250 points that we call touch points. Customers are our boss, they pay us, employ us and keep us honest. Without them our ideas dry up and our capacity to serve with excellence is impugned.
This list ensures that we don’t take our customers for granted – its our lore and rule book. We ask our customers to measure us by this list – if we fail in one of them, we’ve failed the customer and that’s just not an option.