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Quality in the Workplace

What is Quality?

The ongoing process of building and sustaining relationships by assessing, anticipating, and fulfilling stated and implied needs.

Lets Look at some other definitions

Quality is the customers' perception of the value of the suppliers' work output. Error-free, value-added care and service that meets and/or exceeds both the needs and legitimate expectations of those served as well as those within the Medical Center. Quality is a momentary perception that occurs when something in our environment interacts with us, in the pre-intellectual awareness that comes before rational thought takes over and begins establishing order. Judgment of the resulting order is then reported as good or bad quality value

Still More

All your actions aimed at the translation, transformation and realization of customer expectations , converting them to requirements, both qualitatively and quantitatively and measuring your process performance during and after the realization of these expectations and requirements . A product or process that is Reliable, and that performs its intended function is said to be a quality product. Quality is nothing more or less than the perception the customer has of you, your products, and your services!

Quality is left to the perception of the one experiencing an act of quality. Everyone has a different idea of quality. What is your idea of quality?

Characteristics of Quality Employees

1. Honesty 2. Dedication to quality work 3. Experience and skill 4. Punctuality 5. Energy 6. Ability to work harmoniously with others 7. Ability to take initiative 8. Communications skills

From temporary workers to long-term employees, nothing is more valuable to a company than honesty. Its the basis for everything that an employee is expected to do. When an employee has proven to be honest, an employer will continue to find a position for him or her and even promote when possible.

Dedication to Quality Work.

One attribute sets a small business apart from its competitors: the dedication of its staff. Dedicated employees tend to excel in customer care, achieving excellence in all aspects of their work and working until the job is done right (not just until their workday is over).

Experience and Skill

It may seem odd that these traits come after the first two, but most smallbusiness owners would agree that no matter how experienced and skilled employees are, honesty and dedication are just as and, perhaps even more, important. That being said, an employees level of expertise and experience determines his or her ultimate value to the company.

Small businesses usually employ as many people as required to handle the workload demanded at various periods. Habitually tardy or absent employees put a strain on other employees and can throw off the smooth functioning of the entire company.

All things being equal, an energetic employee is most valuable to a company. Energy goes hand in hand with enthusiasm and dedication, enabling employees to work the long hours often required by small businesses.

Ability to work harmoniously with others

Successful small businesses are usually like well-oiled machines. Employees work together closely day after day. In a small company, its a rare for an individual to work alone. While top-quality people skills are not necessarily required, especially among technicians and production staff, being able to get along with others and interact comfortably with many types of people is a definite plus.

Ability to Take Initiative

Self-starters are a great attribute to any small business because of the numerous spontaneous decisions that must be made by every staff member daily. This trait is hard to determine when hiring, but when a company encourages and rewards initiative among its staff, it gives self-starters the opportunity to develop. The more self-starters a company has, the more that problems seem to take care of themselves, and company goals are met efficiently.

Communication Skills
Working closely with others requires communicating. Critical ideas often need to be expressed precisely and comprehensively, both in writing and verbally. The better an employees communication abilities, the more valuable he or she will be to the company.

Skills also valued by employers include:

Computer skills (widely needed in most industries today) Management skills (companies are always looking for employees with management potential) Speaking skills Sales skills Other skills pertaining to the specific type of business

A Quality Workplace
What does it take to get your employees excited about their jobs? Money is a common benefit of working, but money isn't everything. Most people are happy to receive what they consider fair compensation for their job, but they also want other things.

Those things can include:

Recognition for a job well done Opportunities to learn and grow A positive work environment And a supportive team

Ways to motivate and inspire employees include:

Getting the right team in place Communicating with them clearly and regularly offering education opportunities and recognizing and celebrating successes.

The Right Team

"Everybody needs the right environment in which to succeed, and executives need to know what environment they can create. You need to pick the right people who can succeed in that environment, because people will either thrive in it or really hate it."

Motivating and inspiring employees involves providing information about job expectations and feedback. "You should give/get more positive feedback than constructive feedback. Many organizations believe in a three-toone or a four-to-one ratio. And you give positive feedback as soon as you can after the event occurred.

Educational Opportunities

Providing opportunities for professional development is another important motivator.

Learning is fun Learning is interesting Learning is a benefit Many organizations provide free courses and give CEU credit for courses taken

Celebrating Successes
Recognition is very important Everyone loves to get positive feedback Everyone has a desire to know where they stand, how they are doing, etc. Success should be celebrated no matter their size (big or small)

Work Environment
Everyone would like to work in a quality work environment. This truism is borne out in our daily experiences. No one really enjoys those little things, and sometimes big things, that detract from our enjoyment of our workplace. Even those with attitudes such as "work is work who says you have to like it?" appreciate the days that flow smoothly without tension and conflict.


The problem with this truism is that people differ on what a quality workplace may be. For some it may be a place that is peoplefriendly, where congeniality and connection with fellow workers is desired. For others, efficiency and professionalism may be paramount. Some people prefer a certain comfortable looseness in the workplace; others, clearly defined rules that are meant to be followed. This is all to be expected; people are as different, after all, in their expectations of the workplace as they are in their personal lives

Quality Ideals
Although descriptions of a quality work environment may vary from individual to individual, there are also some common expectations. An analysis of responses from a recent study of a county extension staff's descriptions of the ideal work environment identified a number of points of consensus with regard to a quality work environment.


Members of a county extension staff in a quality work environment are friendly; they are open, nice to each other, caring about each other and helpful to each other. They are trustworthy and honest, both in their professional capacities as well as in their personal relationships, respecting their co-workers' confidentialities. They work together as a cohesive unit, approaching their work with a team spirit, but each member is knowledgeable and capable of working independently. They know their jobs and can be depended upon by all members of the staff to support their common goal. Their relationships are marked by understanding. They are caring and supportive of each other, respecting each other's right to disagree, showing fairness and trust. They are interactive, honest and straightforward

Facilities and Resources

The facilities and resources for a quality work environment are comfortable and enjoyable to work in, and easily accessible to both workers and the public. They are the best possible, the newer the better, well equipped and well maintained. Both the public and the staff are proud of the facilities and the adequacy of the resources.


A positive attitude toward the work, the public and co-workers is of the utmost importance. A good work ethic, flexibility, sensitivity, appreciation of co-workers and the public, and a positive self-image are also valued.

Communications within the staff and with the public are open and honest, utilizing good communication skills, such as reflective listening and awareness of nonverbal cues, to minimize misunderstandings. Information is offered in a prompt and professional manner; it is timely, relevant and accurate. All staff members feel free to speak their minds, to express and share ideas.


The county extension programs offered are upto-dateeven visionary. They are of the highest quality in that they are carefully planned to be informative and interesting, and meet the needs of the people and community for whom they are targeted. Programs are focused upon critical issues, and they make a positive impact on the quality of life in the county. They are well funded and widely supported by the community.

The image presented to the public is of highly respected professionals. It is an image of competence and reliability in helping and meeting the needs of those who utilize Extension's resources.


The audiences served by the county extension programs are both general and specific. Particular programs target specific audiences, but the population pool from which those audiences are drawn is diverse, encompassing the population of the entire county; therefore, such diversity of racial, ethnic and religious differences is recognized and accounted for in the program.