Quality Tools for Quality of Life

Celebrating Chinese New Year (Gong Xi Fa Cai!) has us thinking about resolutions again.  Pro QC’s Communications Director met with local quality professionals recently through the American Society of Quality’s network in the Tampa Bay area and discussed the application of quality tools to quality of life.

Highlights from this discussion reveal a compelling case for both employers and employees:

  • “75% of our job success is predicted not by intelligence, but by our optimism, social support network and the ability to manage energy and stress in a positive way.” (Happiness Advantage)
  • “Increasing your optimism can improve your productive energy by 31%.” (Happiness Advantage)
  • “Research has shown that increased activity reduces stress, increases self-efficacy and is proven to help balance work and family.” (Harvard Business Review)
  • “Workers become more productive, have less sick days, and contribute to a lower turnover.  They are more adaptable to change and are shown to contribute to a positive work environment”  (Happiness Advantage)

Suggestions discussed for improving quality of life include:

  • Brainstorm – What are your goals in 1yr, 5 yrs and your lifetime?  Consider: Career, Financial, Education, Family, Attitude, Physical, etc.
  • Audit yourself. Conduct a personal SWOT analysis.
  • Conduct a Quality of Life assessment.  Use tools like GROW or The Energy Project audits.
  • Use an affinity diagram to group brainstormed ideas or SWOT  information… Focus on the 20%. Pareto always fits.
  • Set SMART goals – Create calendar reminders to assess and improve as necessary.
  • Use an app & or set calendar reminders to walk – Work up to 10,000 steps per day. Have walking meetings. 
  • Flowchart your day or specific activity to identify areas of improvement.
  • Use a Grid Analysis for important decision making.  Refer to the example we have posted in the past using supplier selection.
  • Develop a personal mission statement. As Drucker would say, “What business are you in?”
  • Use ISO 26000 as a guideline for personal social responsibility – Audit yourself.  
  • Use To-Do lists to manage time. Each day, identify activities that focus on both short and long-term action items.  
  • Track health data with wearable technology, such as Fitbit.  
  • Use Lifehacker’s Daily Personal Inventory Form to identify root causes.
  • 3-to-1 ratio – Keep a daily list of 3 things your thankful for. “Research shows you’ll be more resilient to adversity and better able to achieve things.” It is noted up to a 15% decrease in stress can be achieved by doing this daily for 10 minutes.

Other resources:

Action for Happiness:

“Everyone’s path to happiness is different. But  review of the latest research has found 10 Keys to Happier Living that consistently tend to make people’s lives happier and more fulfilling.”

The Happy Manifesto (Free Download) – Make your organization a great place to work.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective PeoplePersonal Workbook – Stephen R. Covey

TEDx – The Happy Secret to Better Work

“Happiness fuels success, not the other way around. When we’re positive, our brains are more motivated, engaged, creative, energetic, resilient and productive.”  The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor

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