Recently, as I was driving home from work, I saw a bumper sticker on the back of a run-down pickup truck, that said "Git Er Done." As I thought about this saying, which I believe came originally from a show called Larry the Cable Guy, I wondered about the implications of this for companies like a railroad.
Thinking more about this, what this saying means, at least to me, is that the goal is to complete something, and perhaps give no thought to how one gets the job done. That is, no thought to safety or quality....just productivity - get it done....at all costs?
While the thought itself is quintessential American, and the idea of finishing a job is not necessarily a bad thing, I wonder about the implications of this for American industry. Thinking about the domestic auto industry 20-25 years ago, while productivity was high, quality was not always a priority. It took a while for the improvement process to ingrain itself in the auto industry, beginning with Ford's "Quality is Job One." But sayings alone cannot automatically improve a process.
One thing about railroading is that there is definitely a "process" to be followed, whether a person is driving a 150 car train, or laying a piece of rail. Safety (by following the rules without exception,) is paramount, and Quality levels need to be high. Of course, the job needs to be done too, to serve the customer. All three legs of that stool need to be covered well.
Now, what does that mean for selection processes - how we select new team members? Think about this. Compare the saying "Git er done," with the work a brain surgeon does. Might make a person pause.....at the very least!
Matching a person, the skills, and the behaviors, to the job, is an extremely important piece of the selection process.