Quality action teams pocket guide: Systems for Great Business

The Quality Action Teams Pocket Guide is a tiny little book. It’s so tiny that you can completely ignore it, as I did for about a decade. Yet the Guide is about the most useful little thing you could wish to have.

Welcome to the series Systems for Great Business.
Great business requires great systems. It doesn’t matter if you’re just dipping your toe into freelancing, whether you’re a successful, solo journalist, or whether you’re building an epic and amazing creative agency team: Your success is in your systems. This series gives you the insights you need to make yours both useful and robust.

What’s in the Quality Action Teams Pocket Guide

The Quality Action Teams Pocket Guide includes a deck of tools that support the FADE cycle. The FADE cycle goes like this:

  1. Focus
  2. Analyse
  3. Develop
  4. Execute

Modern parlance sort of replaces this with the PDCA cycle, which is

  1. Plan
  2. Do
  3. Check
  4. Act.

However, FADE is a little more specific because it walks you through defining your problem, analysing your data, developing a solution, and then implementing and monitoring the plan. In contrast, PDCA skips the definition and analysis portions and jumps right to the plan.

In other words, if you can’t focus and analyse, any planning you do will be worthless.

This is why the Guide is so useful.

The Quality Action Toolkit is actually a series of commonly used methods and documents that drive improvement in your business. It includes brainstorming, checklists, pareto analysis, force-field analysis, selection grids, standard operating procedures, etc.

Why you need this little book

We’ve all ‘done a brainstorm’. We have all used ‘checklists’. Some of us know of impact transfer. Few freelancers (especially) ever go to standard operating procedures. These are all things that creatives tend to encounter inside other businesses. So why are you not using them yourself?

That’s not an idle question. If other businesses use them, how are they are useful to you?

They increase the quality and speed of your output and allow you progressively to iterate on what you’re doing.

Of course, if you’re not willing to go to the detail (I wish I had a dollar for every creative I’ve ever met who believed that an entire system was the detail), you’ll struggle like hell. The phrase ‘the devil is in the detail’ exists for a reason: You’ll find the problem in the fine print.

This Guide is, however, not available for purchase.

It was created way back in 1990 by a company known as Organizational Dynamics. It’s not available for purchase. However, I am in the process of finding out whether I may be allowed to make it available.

If you’d like to be on the list in case I get ‘yes go for it’, tell me.

Great systems take your business from good to great.

Great systems take your business from good to great. If you don’t have the space to think about them (let alone support them), that’s your first indication that you’re in trouble. Here’s how I can help you:

  • Mentoring and coaching (which is really Business Therapy for Creatives)
  • Quality consulting for systems development, management and auditing

Contact me directly for more information.

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