Quality control has been a hot topic in our world lately. Auditing work done to ensure quality, professionalism, compliance and receptivity maintains the level of excellence that a professional desires to offer. To bring one’s very best to work every day takes consistent alignment to ensure that it’s really happening. When we think of QC’ing our work, we might feel insulted or consider it to be a waste of time, but it’s actually an exercise in transparency, accuracy and excellence.
Often, as business professionals, we think that those reviewing our work might have it in for us. We put detailed stories together in our minds using scraps of truth in conversations or, worse yet, mere glances from the QC person that we allege cut us to the core. We look for trouble and we’re likely to manufacture it. We will find an audience who wants to hear it. We then feel justified.
While it may be that some individual who sits in a QC capacity becomes power-wielding in attitude and function, those situations are rare. Not everyone is out to get you, really. Your work needs a review from time to time. Welcome it. Ask for it.
In many ways, quality control is a path towards self-reflection. Reflection is a brutal discipline. Looking inward can expose flaws, fears and failures with which we’d rather not deal. It’s why using our minds to create drama to deflect is a knee-jerk reaction. It’s self-protection. Push through that so you can deal with the demons. It’s just in those moments of reflection when clarity sets in. We see things for what they are, not what we’ve ascribed them to be or what we’ve hoped they were. Quality control keeps us honest.
In our attempts to get ahead, we may have opted for shortcuts that have shortchanged us. We may have circumvented opportunities for certain skill development, conflict management consideration and technical learning. Why? Evaluation would have to be a part of those developmental opportunities. Someone would have to review what we have done well, what still needs improvement and what is way off of the mark. We don’t like our work QC’d by nature. We default to avoiding such involvement. And it’s just the thing we need.
If you work in an environment where someone does not regularly, if ever, looks at your performance, ask for review. Invite someone to QC what you do. Keep yourself honest. Use those reviews to self-reflect and to determine process changes, courses of action and trajectory of work. That’s the secret of success, really. Our accountability pushes us towards excellence. Embrace QC.