Unlike many fashionable management systems that have come and gone, working to improve performance and achieve excellence can not be a passing fad or pet project. It must be a way of thinking, a way of acting, and doing business better.
Excellence and quality are ‘values’
No matter how much time or money is invested in trying to become “excellent,” it can’t happen until people develop and share a common understanding of what they are trying to do, and how doing it will have value for them. We have learned that the single greatest obstacle to improving quality and achieving excellence and quality means for them and what they believe they must do to get them.
Organizations that have had the most successful long-term experiences have three common characteristics:
- People at every level share an understanding of the mission and purpose.
- Group goals and individual tasks are shared, understood, agreed upon, and accepted by all.
- Mutual respect and responsibility exist for both the needs of individuals and the organization.
While all of these ideas sound simple and reasonable, in practice they are seldom achieved. Differences in how individual leaders think about and value employees, customers, products, tasks, services, and policies can result in serious confusion and conflict. These differences always influence a person’s decisions, expectations, and actions. When these value differences are not understood and acknowledged, even well-intentioned decisions will result in conflicts that can undermine cooperation and commitment.
Getting people at all levels of an organization to work together toward a common purpose can best be achieved through gaining an objective understanding of what “value” differences exist, where they are, and what impact they are having on the organization’s ability to achieve the results they desire.
The “VQ Profile” system objectively measures the:
- Value differences of key people in the organization,
- Common value patterns, including similarities and differences at each level,
- Beliefs, attitudes, and perceptions people have about their work and organization.
More specifically, we provide a methodology for measuring the degree of “excellence” in an organization and provide feedback to individuals and groups in four critical areas:
- Management Capacity: An analysis of individual and team potential for developing realistic plans, result-oriented problem solving, gaining commitment, creating cooperation, and other related management skills.
- Personal Performance Potential: An assessment of the value strengths and blocks within individuals and groups regarding excellence.
- Environmental Scan: An in-depth study of the expectations and perceptions (what people believe “is” happening vs. what people believe “ought” to be happening), the degree to which compatibility, shared values, and practices exist.
- Value for Excellence: An evaluation of the current potential for giving internal and external customer service at the desired level of excellence.
Research on hundreds of thousands of people from all around the world demonstrates that people want and need to do well; they want their work to add value and meaning to their lives. The real challenge then is to:
- Determine what the organization values now,
- Implement an objective process to assure that people in key positions of critical influence have the capacity to build and support the organization’s value system,
- Develop shared values that can result in achieving shared goals, personal responsibility and mutual respect.
Excellence is an attitude. It stems from beliefs and values that can be shaped and grown. Achieving true excellence is possible if the desire is strong enough. We can help you assess the key people in your organization, and their current desire and capacity to make essential personal changes to achieve the improved performance and excellence you desire.
Harvey Schoof is a founding partner of Axiogenics, LLC, an international coach training organization. He’s known as an expert in the science of applied Axiology, training coaches across North America, Europe, and Australia. As a consultant and coach, Harvey has worked with hundreds of companies and thousands of managers for 35+ years sharing his insights to assist them in becoming more “valuegenic” in their personal and professional lives.