I’m trying not to be cynical about some things…
But whether due to the economy or not, I’m hearing a lot of chatter about people feeling like they are being forced to put out terrible quality service or products. To clarify, I would say that these same people are saying it feels like they are being “pressured” more than in the past. The common refrain is that the available time given to get anything done isn’t increasing, but the expected output is.
Whether it might be relabeling not-so-fresh meat or produce at the grocery store, using less reliable brake pads on cars, not doing as much follow-up at the dentist office or just not taking the time to clean up the details for anything customer service related – people are either saying they are being pressured to do lesser quality or I’m noticing it more. My gut instinct is that people are indeed saying it more.
With each anecdote, I’m hearing that people are getting the “wink” from the people giving the orders where they are employed. In other words, look the other way if possible and fix the issue later if there is a complaint. (But I might add that the Open Secret rules applies – you aren’t supposed to acknowledge that corners are being cut…)
Running lean is a valuable tool to reduce costs. But it tends to reduce quality and increase the likelihood of customer dissatisfaction.
It seems obvious, doesn’t it?
“If you don’t have time to do it right, you ain’t gonna have time to fix it later, that’s for sure!” -x