Need to get out of a rut?


Attention To The Basics Can Make A Big Difference Fast


Early in my career, I encountered the first of many situations where a valuable lesson could be used over and over again in the telecom and consulting fields.


In the mid-1970s, the state public utility commission confronted Michigan Bell over the service levels provided.  A quality of service investigation found that none of the 341 local exchanges' met overall service objective levels or better. For whatever reasons, the company had not met these standards, but now had serious issues. The known set of 10 criteria was the standard used to investigate and measure, and a program to correct every issue was quickly developed.


As a reasonably new technician, I had found that attention to the most basic elements of the system could pay off quickly with results.  While more experienced technical managers were delving into technical issues, I proposed that one area of concerns could be addressed first.  I suggested improved communications, fixing process issues, and changing the consequences of performance.  I soon got the assignment as a supervisor to apply this idea to a subset of the exchanges, which had never been acceptable for even a month.  With the help of the whole service team and a focus on the basics, we changed course and went from bottom quartile to top quartile results in less than a year.  The idea was then implemented statewide to significantly improve results.


This pattern of paying attention to the basics has provided results in numerous other situations and organizations since then.  As consultants to your business or enterprise, we make sure the people, processes and technologies work together in the best possible way with experienced leadership, effective organization and proven communications. 


It doesn't matter how you got in the rut, but how you can quickly get out.


What are your thoughts about focus on the basics?  What questions do you have for me?

~ Dennis Sergent