Talking the Talk

 I subscribe to the fundamental belief system refered to as the GMPs.

This is my belief system, the concepts are applicable in every aspect of life, and contribute value to every experience. I think some of those types of people think only about the actual wording of the regulations, and they never stop to see the beauty of the simple fundamentals behind the regulations.

The belief system is a simple combination of these fundamentals;

1. Say What You Do, and Do What You Say
2. Reflect Reality
3. Quality Product is Born of a Quality Process

When I utter those sentences out loud, I realize that many of my co-workers consider forcing me to take vacation. But I am genuinely surprised by the number of people I meet who find the GMPs a disagreeable topic, or organizations that find them debatable or difficult to deploy.

These are not complex ideals; they were not created by modern manufacturing companies. They are in fact, the fundamental behaviors we expect from our best friends, our spouses, and our children.

Let’s take a practical look at these basics, and let’s use simple examples of our every day lives to clarify their meanings.

1. Say What You Do, and Do What You Say
Home Life Translation: Be clear. Be reliable. Give me a reason to trust you.

Not difficult to see where this one is headed. If I am going to trust you with something that is important to me, I need to have a reason to trust you, or at least no reason not to trust you. Let’s think about some of our earliest memories of how we applied this to our lives before we were old enough to articulate the concept.

Father in the pool: “Come on honey, jump, I’ll catch you.”

The small child on the deck hesitates, fidgets, turns around to look for Mom, and finally says “you better!”

Now we all know, there are only two ways this story will end.

The Dad will catch the child, and that child will not hesitate the next time. The next time the child will leap with confidence, and encourage his/her friends to do the same.


The Dad will fail to catch the child, the child’s head will go underwater, and the fear will settle in. This father will need to work very hard to get the child to take a chance again.

2. Reflect Reality
Home Life Translation: Tell the truth. The whole truth. Exactly the way it happened.

None of us are perfect. No group of imperfect people will ever create anything that is perfect. Perfection is not an attainable goal. Honesty and accuracy are attainable goals, and critical objectives in a world of imperfect people. In order to achieve transparency, we cannot fear our flaws; we should not try to white wash them with clever representations of partial facts.

If we are to be responsible people, we need to honestly reflect events and our parts in them. From this, we gain the trust of others and knowledge of ourselves, and we take advantage of every opportunity for improvement.

3. Quality Product is Born of a Quality Process
Home Life Translation: You reap what you sow.

This one is my favorite, this one I apply to almost everything.

With regard to my marriage, quality communication produces quality commitment.

With regard to my parenting, quality supervision minimizes the chances that your child will find themselves in avoidable trouble.

With regard to my household maintenance, a quality maintenance program reduces the number of times you will have an emergency replacement of something very expensive.

Now that we have reflected on the fundamental meanings, we should find it simpler to apply these concepts to our workplace. It is also much easier to connect the tools we use everyday, to the concepts they were designed to promote. Let’s translate fundamentally for the work place;

1. Say What You Do, and Do What You Say
Work Place Translation: Implement Procedural Controls – Issue quality procedures and policies, train resources, and assure compliance – remember – if a process isn’t defined, success can’t be measured, and variability will be unavoidable.

2. Reflect Reality
Work Place Translation: Accuracy in Documentation – document activities in real time, completely, and accurately – remember – if you didn’t document it, you didn’t do it!

3. Quality Product is Born of a Quality Process
Work Place Translation: Implement Process Control – A quality process eliminates the potential impact of variability on the quality endpoint. – remember – Quality is never accidental, but must be planned, understood and controlled to be assured.

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