Great Leaders Address Non Compliance to Standards Quickly

Great leaders understand the standard is the way the organization learns and succeeds through continuous improvement. Standards help people stay safe; personal protective equipment, designated walkways, lock out tag out.  Standards help ensure a quality product. And Standards allow us to see problems quickly.  So great leaders know that when the standards are not followed all of that is at risk and they address it quickly.

Not addressing one standard risks making all standards optional

Great leaders use the opportunity to quickly address a nonconformance to standard as a way to promote all standards.  If a leader stops an employee during a walk because they are not wearing their ear protection, they are essentially letting that employee and everyone around them know they expect everyone to follow all standards.

Likewise, if the leader does not address the hearing protection and every notices it sends the message that some standards are important but not all.  That can create an environment where everyone decides for themselves what is important and what is not.

But the standard is silly or I can doing it better this way

Great leaders recognize the full learning potential of following standards and they embrace it.  If a leader is watching someone follow standard work and that person skips a step or does it out of order they quickly call out the difference. The employee may say, but that is a silly way to do it. I can do it better this way.

“GREAT”, replies the leader. “But if that is going to become the new standard then we will need to formally make the change and make sure everyone is doing it that way. And we will have our current standard to compare to for evidence that it is better. “

Try to catch them doing it correctly

Great leaders walk the shop floor looking for employees who are following the standard and uses the opportunity to say thank you.  They show their appreciation for the behavior they want to promote.  But when they see someone not following the standard it is their obligation to act quickly and point it out.  They should try to find 9 compliance for every one 1 noncompliance, but they should not look away from the one 1.

Help you leaders address noncompliance to standards quickly. And help them find people following the standards, too.

Jeff Boris

Jeff Boris

Jeff completed a 31 year career at Alcoa in engineering, Maintenance, Production, and 5 years as Location Manager. He currently consults across manufacturing facilities leveraging his plant management experience for excellence in EHS, Operations Management, and Cost analysis. He and his wife have 4 adult children. He currently lives in Newburgh, Indiana.
Jeff Boris

Latest posts by Jeff Boris (see all)

Speak Your Mind