Everybody loves to learn something new

Everybody loves to learn something new. It makes us feel good to know something new. Learning keeps us young in heart and soul. Although we love to learn, no one likes to be taught. There are several negatives which have a tie to being poorly taught. My goal is not to teach you. My goal is to help you learn.

As soon as you mention things such as TQM, 8 – D, Six Sigma, or any of the other quality and process improvement techniques, you automatically find yourself the only person standing in the room. Everyone else ran. Most hate these classes.

Everyone who was ever ordered to take a process improvement class has a right. And everyone who wasted time sitting through endless meetings trying to figure out something to change has a right. And, all those who put up with the corporate politics of leaders who would never let the change happen, has a right to hate the subject.

We are not going to do that here.

You are a smart person. And you are responsible. Everybody has different responsibilities. You may have a house or an apartment, a family and/or a pet, and bank accounts and credit cards which you maintain. You are pretty good at the things you regularly do. And you’re probably a whiz at some others. Don’t let anyone put you down.

Everybody has things that go well and things which tend to go off the rails from time to time. I’m here to show you a few ideas you can learn to do, which will keep the same thing from going off the rails every six weeks or so.

Ever have a small problem that interrupts the momentum of your morning? For me, about once every six weeks I can’t find my car keys. When I come back to look for them, I am accused of losing them for good, and we will never be able to drive the car again!

They usually have fallen out of my pants pocket. Or, were left in a jacket or pants which I had used the day before. On rare occasions when I’m carrying things in both hands they end up left stuck inside the front door knob overnight. Good thing I lock the screen door.

To this annoyance, I usually apply what’s known as a Band-Aid Fix. Something super fast, super cheap, and something allows for the annoyance to be ignored until the next time it happens. The bad thing about this type of a fix is that it guarantees whatever the annoyance is it will happen again, and probably sooner than later.

My Band-Aid Fix to this is to set out a bowl on a table or nightstand which I plan to put the contents of my pockets into nightly. How often does this actually happen? Usually, the first night I set the bowl out and occasionally the second. I’m not a bad person, I just get busy and forget. Therefore, it is only a Band-Aid cure and guaranteed to happen again at regular intervals.

Because I work for myself (I think that is called a vow of poverty,) I have time to look for the keys. If I had to be somewhere at a particular time, I could be in trouble. So what is a better thing that I could do to ensure I knew exactly where my keys are first thing in the morning?

Are we going to write a long and lengthy process and perform follow up on it every six months? Absolutely not! What’s the smart thing to do? Because it’s my wife and me, we could take a few minutes and think about it.

Some ideas could be as simple as having a key rack with hooks by the door, where I place my keys when I come home and take them when leaving. The key rack could be in plain sight so we could both keep an eye on whether or not we were using it.

Another option, we could hide keys outside the house because if the keys are hanging inside the house, sooner or later, we will end up locking ourselves out. Unfortunately, neither one of us are trusting enough souls to hide keys outside the house.

Another option might be to purchase a key finder. Amazon has a plethora of key finders that work with everything from a whistle to your smartphone. Cost is usually somewhere between $15, and $24.  There are more expensive and less expensive models.

So on a five-minute conversation with your significant other, (maybe 10 minutes,) you discuss the situation with someone and come up with three good ideas. Which is best? It’s not for me to say, it is whichever method is most foolproof for you. Usually, the best processes remove human intervention.

Just a side note, when I can’t find my smartphone, I use the house phone to call the smartphone, and then I walk around the house trying to hear it ring. Always great to have a backup.

Thank you for being with us today.  Until next time, we wish you well.

Author: Mike Balof

Mike Balof, MEd, develops intensive, interactive courses which have helped contract manufacturing and nonprofit institutions. He taught youth and adults seeking employment to better represent themselves, leading many of them to successful careers. Mike taught in corporate training, teaching adults and high school students to build computers, work as a team, and to identify and fix problems using a myriad of tools from Total Quality Management(TQM), to 8-D, to Six Sigma. Mike now turns his talents to helping fellow veterans reach their objectives and desires through continuous performance improvement. As we start to live in a post knowledge world, where a doubling of common knowledge shrinks from months to days, our essential skills will include how we interact with those around us. Mike believes there is hope for growth and opportunity for everyone. Everyone has the opportunity to retool and find the career they want. Mike strives to present students of all ages, abilities, and means with a full plate of options for learning.

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