Me, myself and ASQ! That’s what I would be talking today – my first official blog post for ASQ’s Influential Voices Program. Thank you ASQ for inviting me on this opportunity to express myself on quality issues to the world of quality. I’m thrilled to perpetuity!
If you think Quality is one of the easiest and THE ‘get away with’ jobs in the industrial world, go take a dip in the Ganges to wash this sin off your chest. It’s a sin to say that, think that! Think again.
But wait, I ain’t saying it’s the toughest job in the world either. It’s actually similar to a laughing gas kind of reaction when you are crying – you are forced to laugh when you are actually crying. In quality, you DO what no one wants you to do – check on other people’s crap. But then ‘you got to do what you got to do’, as they say! Throw some weight around, concoct a procedure, marinate with a quality form and serve it to the process owner! Viola! You can’t stop flattering about your culinary skills.
The process owner? The least.
Quality is not about throwing your weight around, because you can! Quality is a lot of responsibility, needs a lot of ethical conduct and perseverance to see the results down the years! The Japanese are proud producers of the most economical yet quality personified cars in the world, because of their perseverance over a number of decades! Toyota has gained iconic status in the quality world, and I stand by its ideals. Till death do us apart.
My Early Days
For reasons I realized over a period of time, I have always had a strong affinity for things quality. Things I did at a young age, like:
- Ensuring a perfect hairdo at my hair cutter
- Making all people in the house wash their hands before touching food
- Giving taste feedback to my mom while cooking a delicacy
- Suggesting my teacher to give ‘awake’ times during chemistry classes (half the class used to fall asleep!)
- I couldn’t tolerate hair on the floor! I used to freak out if I saw long women’s hair on the floor. They look far more worthwhile on a deserving head!
Naïve I would say for most of the above, yet when I grew up and found ‘professional’ Quality, I realized I was already in touch with its basics at a young age; quite a few of us are! I think I was lucky to have been cultured since my childhood that way. All said, I had not the faintest clue I would be making a career out of ‘disturbing other peoples comfort zones’. It is true – when people are asked to do things a certain way to improve, its difficult from the word go. It’s their comfort zones we are messing with.
My earliest stint with Quality was in India (2003) where, while working as a Processing Engineer, I was asked to develop procedures for our laminated and insulated glass processing unit as part of our ISO 9001 QMS development program. While, I didn’t much enjoy the documentation, I realized how important it is to document processes in order to ensure standardization. This little experience laid the seeds of a career in a field I would want to spend the rest of my life in.
The following year I landed in Kuwait only to work on a QMS development-implementation project with on-the-job training. This in-depth experience with the nuances of the standards and the requirements of developing a good system reverberated my thoughts of a career in quality. From here on, there was no looking back!
ASQ and me
I have to proudly admit that ASQ is special to me. Throughout my progress and success as a quality professional, ASQ has been my greatest motivation. I still remember the day when my then boss (now ASQ Country Councilor for Kuwait) first gave me a copy of the Quality Progress magazine, which I read in its entirety in a few hours! Every corner of the magazine dripped quality and I am still relishing the merits of this ‘amrit’! From being a follower of ASQ in 2004-2005 to becoming a member and now super-supporter of ASQ and its quest to spread the body of quality across the globe, it’s been a journey full of valuable experiences.
Today, after a good number of years of quality experience, to being honored as one of the ‘40 New Voices of Quality‘ and now as one of ASQ’s Influential Voices blogger, I owe the greater part of my professional success to ASQ and everything that it stands for. Thank you ASQ and its able team of professionals for providing me, at various points of my career, the light that I always look up to! I wish this light continues to guide me and newer professionals passionate about quality towards their own successes.
Why be an Influential Voice?
ASQ has always focused on permeating the essence of quality globally, and I believe this is one medium which can mass-contribute towards ASQ’s commitment to quality awareness worldwide.
Being in a region (Middle East) where people simply don’t get the basics of quality right, it definitely needs a greater push than the usual. And I am humbled to have been invited to this opportunity by ASQ to offer my sensibilities on quality and related issues. Plus, with adequate networking, we can reach the masses to greater effect.
With this as a midpoint, I am hopeful my journey of quality continues to grow longer and wider, and provide some perspectives to fellow practitioners and newbie’s.