“He said it’s fixed?” I asked my wife incredulously. “That’s not fixed.”
“I know,” she said, as we both stared at the cracked tile.
Our bathroom remodel was just about finished when our contractor said he’d cracked one of the tiles upon installation, but no worries, he said, it’d been fixed.
After my wife communicated that we’d found his fix wanting, his quick and correct response was “sure.” Nonetheless, the whole incident left me irked. I mean, how could anyone think that “fix” would do? I’m guessing he knew it wouldn’t, but the desire to move on to the next job, the desire for more revenue, clouded his judgment. In all businesses, the desire to do good work inevitably battles with the desire to do more work. Ironically, it is those organizations that focus on the former which generate more of the latter.
Our contractor would clearly have benefited from an internal quality control inspector who reviewed all his jobs before pronouncing them “completed.” There is no way such an individual would have signed off on a bathroom with a broken tile, and I’d never have gotten annoyed.
I got to thinking about the quality/revenue conflict recently as requests to promote White Papers through our publication have increased. I’ve always stated that, even though there is a fee attached with these programs, we would never distribute one which did not have quality content. The problem was that I was the arbiter and the one with a financial interest in saying “yes.” Add to this the fact that distributing sub-par White Papers means we will quickly have no program at all, and it became clear something had to be done.
In response, we’ve formed the five-member healthsystemCIO.com White Paper Review Panel, comprised of folks I’ll call FOPs (friends of the publication). They check out each paper and vote a simple thumbs up or down as to whether the paper would be of value to the majority of CIOs. If a majority of the panel says yes, it’s a go. Nice, clean and simple.
With this step, we’ve removed the guess work by removing ourselves from the decision-making process. We’ve also added an important stamp that gives you the confidence to download White Papers distributed through healthsystemCIO.com, whereas you might be more reluctant to fork over your contact information to publications without such a test in place. As we all know, downloading one poor White Paper (or anything else for that matter) means you’ll think long and hard before trusting either the authoring or distributing organization again.
Our contractor should have had quality controls on the back end, just like our White Paper program needed some on the front. If he’d done it, I’d be a happier and more referencable customer today. Now that we’ve done it, I’m hoping we’ll have a high quality (and revenue generating) program for years to come. Sure, it will mean saying no to a check here and there, but case studies of successful organizations prove that so often it’s the ability to say no to new business which guarantees the existing one will thrive into the future.