I hated studying for exams. Ok, maybe hate is a strong word. I didn’t particularly enjoy preparing for exams. I enjoyed school tremendously because of my friends and sports but I always seemed to find something more interesting to do when it was time to study. In all the years of school life, you do many tests and examinations and the focus is always on taking the test. You study hard and write the exam and then wait for your result. I’ve been thinking about how this may be indirectly conditioning us to think…
I was watching my team complete a sign at Creative Centre (We are into Printing and Signage) and I was looking over them like an invigilator would. I remember a teacher looking over me during an exam at school and I would be thinking, what are they seeing? Am I answering correctly or am I messing up? It was always confusing judging their body language. I could never tell if the cough was genuine or if it was a hint to tell me I’m doing something wrong.
Back to my story at work.. As I looked at what they were doing I began looking for errors and blemishes as I normally would before “passing” the job. I noticed a few things that hadn’t been done yet but the job was incomplete so I couldn’t score the job overall.
My team mates were about to finish the job and ask me if its okay? And then I realised, that this is how we’ve been conditioned to think. We have been trained to do work and then give it to someone else to mark.
I am not saying that we are unable to grade our own work. Its just that I noticed how not much emphasis is put on us being able to mark for ourselves. Rather, from the start of school life until we finish, work is always being marked for us.
We must attempt to untrain ourselves from doing something and waiting for approval from others. I am not saying that we should not get input from others in order to improve. I am saying that we must not be like zombies and complete a task with no consideration of the standard oof workmanship and only when its complete, hand it over for critiquing. We need to develop a Marking Skill.
So why do I think its important to have a “Marking Skill”. This is a really important skill to have in business because it is the setting stone for high standards. If a person working on a job can see that what they are producing is 40%, they will not give it to the client or their boss, they will get it as close to 100% as possible and know the answers before waiting to get marked.
We as people love shifting the blame and don’t like being accountable. We rather do something and hand it over and say that someone else approved it. We love to blame others and make excuses for our actions.
“Be diligent to show yourself approved, a work man who is not ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth”. Know what you are doing and be confident in what you are doing. Know what your results are going to be before you hand it in.