This story has been around for some time, and while it is hard to verify, there is still a valuable lesson to learn from it.
Excellence should become a habit.
IBM, the American computer giant, had decided to test Japanese manufacturing capabilities by placing a trial order for some computer component.
In the specifications IBM had spelt out that they would accept only three defective parts per 10,000.
This had stressed the Japanese manufacturer. How? Why?
On the exact date of delivery, the parts arrived at the doorstep of IBM. The shipment was accompanied with a hand written letter: “We Japanese people have had a very difficult time understanding IBM business practices. However, with great difficulty, the three defective parts per 10,000 have been separately manufactured. They have been included in the consignment in a separate packaging, with bold instructions – DEFECTIVE PIECES, AS PER REQUIREMENT. NOT FOR USE. We hope this pleases you.”
The manufacturer was committed to excellence and could not understand why a defective part should be delivered to their client.
How committed are you to excellence in what you do?
This week, pay closer attention to your deliverable, let your work be excellent.