Routine Standardization (Part 7)

Doug Bellamy / February 2017

We can do this. I can get this written, and you can get it read. But, will we? Together we can also share the progress of doing so. I can better learn to articulate the intended concept, and you can improve your organization, personally and professionally, by fully understanding, utilizing and advocating what you learn—if we both put forth the effort. However, I must ask a crucial question when it comes to this level of cooperation: Will we?
At times, writing, communicating well, determining relevant subject matter and conveying it succinctly isn’t easy.  Reading the result of such effort and assimilating the written word can also be a chore. As for me, I’ve decided to do it anyway. How about you and your part? Are you up for it? At this point the question narrows to—Will you?
As we continue, it is with a single-minded purpose to fully provide an understanding of what’s needed to conceptualize content and provide value to you, the reader. And I have limited opportunity and so do you. I’m allowing us three more monthly columns on the subject of Routine Standardization, giving us a series of 10 columns. In between now and then, we must finish the intended goal and conclude. Failure to finish on my part is not an option. It defies my DNA and hopefully yours as well.
Before I can do so, I must be certain that I have offered up sufficient information to clearly communicate, review and drive the intended point home. Please pardon my emphatic insistence and my earnest summons, to you, the reader. We must be equally passionate and emphatic. Why? Because without such, we cannot fully communicate.
So then, by way of review, we have spent the last six months exploring the notion that it is a wise business practice to implement RS. Early on I defined RS. I took the two words apart, defined each of them individually and combined them, defining the phrase. I followed by pointing out that management, must make decisions regarding the operational intricacies, develop best practices, SOP, clear path processes, time frames for tasks, and implement them. RS must also be developed through consensus with all stakeholders. Though you will not always attain unanimous agreement, once the decisions are made, there is no room for insubordination.
As the series continued to unfold, we took note of other companies outside our industry, titans on a global scale, the health care industry and their “specialized work routines,” then touched briefly on RS as it pertains to UPS and Apple, each of which have implemented and developed their own versions of RS thereby establishing themselves organizationally as household names and generating massive profits.
Most recently, I referred to a business in our industry that for the past several decades followed such a path. Utilizing RS, slowly but surely they developed a proactive approach at systematically producing a culture of both employees, practices and RS that served their organizations and their customers exceptionally well.
Over time, being busy about getting better, they have a history of happening upon deliberate discoveries, as well as one “accidental discovery” after another. I’ll define an “accidental discovery” as a product or practice that was inadvertently stumbled upon while actually pursuing solutions to other problems—problems that the business didn’t initially set out to solve.
Again, such discoveries were discovered by those in pursuit of products and or solutions, in some cases cures, other than what they ultimately found. And what they ultimately found was oftentimes significantly more valuable than the product, cure and/or solution behind the initial research. They were working on something and accidently discovered much more. This is an important concept. They were not just sitting on their laurels. They were in pursuit of improvements and in doing so, they got much more than they bargained for.
Think penicillin, the microwave, the pacemaker, the Slinky, Play-Doh (I’m dating myself) to name a few. Why, it is even said that a dog discovered Velcro. All were accidental discoveries. How about that little blue pill with big results and incalculable profits discovered by Pfizer about two decades ago? They were not out to find a remedy for ED, but they discovered an interesting reaction during the initial trials. Male patients didn’t want to give the surplus pills back. You can figure the rest out from there.
We do not have the time or space to elaborate further on this. Hopefully I’ve made the point and struck a chord of interest. Just Google “accidental discoveries or inventions.” It’s interesting. Understanding this will become increasingly more relevant as we continue.
By the way, if you’re paying attention to this series, you will recall that I made you a promise last month that I have not kept. My apologies, I will do so next month. I promise, for whatever that’s worth.

Doug Bellamy is former president of Innovative Drywall Systems Inc. dba Alta Drywall, Escondido, Calif. He is known for his original thought, innovative approach and the personal development of unique processes, systems and procedures. He is available for consultation, business management seminars and training. Visit him on LinkedIn or contact him at