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Competency Spotlight: Quality Focus

Competency Spotlight: Quality Focus

When people buy or use a company’s products, they expect a high-quality experience. And if a company provides less than what is expected from a customer, there’s room for any degree of disappointment.  Employees that have a drive to produce high-quality work are a necessity that companies can’t effectively function without.

Quality Focus involves promoting and maintaining high standards at work, looking for ways to improve products and services, and encouraging coworkers to do so as well. People who perform well at this competency apply discipline and detail-orientation to their work activities.

The group of scales that make up a competency are shown visually in an assessment as a competency model. Colors indicate whether or not a candidate falls in a preferred range for each scale.

The Assess Personality Survey measures innate characteristics that impact the amount a person focuses on quality and how it affects their work performance. Our experience and research have shown that there are three main traits that deal with Quality Focus.

  1. Detail Orientation

    Attention to detail is one of the most important aspects in driving quality. Some jobs require a high amount of precision while others do not. Managerial roles focus more on assigning detailed work to a team while the team’s job is to be consistent and accurate when performing detailed projects.

    People who fall on the low end of this scale tend to avoid involvement in detailed tasks. They may become impatient when doing projects that incorporate a lot of specifics. Better suited in a role where the “big picture” needs focus, these employees may overlook smaller but potentially critical elements. On this end of the scale, people tend to want to delegate routine detailed tasks to others.

    When employees fall on the high end, they’re likely to enjoy doing detailed tasks and focus on accuracy and consistency. Oftentimes, these people show more patience because they are used to taking their time and making things precise. This end of the scale is the best place to find those who will provide high-quality work.

    In all industries at some level, there need to be people that pay attention to detail. Finding people who not only perform well on projects, but who also enjoy doing so is critical to ensuring quality services.

  2. Need for Task Closure

    The ability to complete a task and persist through projects is an important trait for employees who strive to produce quality work. Do your employees have trouble following through on the jobs they’re in charge of?

    The low end of this scale represents those who are comfortable leaving tasks unfinished. These employees are more willing to drop what they’re working on and shift priority if needed. However, because they are so comfortable leaving tasks unfinished, they may, well… leave tasks unfinished. Managers who have a tendency to leave jobs incomplete may be too forgiving when assigned projects aren’t completed, negatively impacting deadlines and slowing down the team’s progress.

    The higher on this scale a person scores, the more likely they are to finish tasks given to them. Employees with a high need for task closure carry out jobs to completion and encourage others to do so as well. As long as people who fall on the high end are able to change priorities when necessary, having the need for task closure helps ensure the highest amount of quality.

  3. Serious-Minded, Restrained

    Creating and maintaining services and products takes diligence and discipline. In all industries, repeatable tasks should be carried out without being rushed through to assure that a high-quality standard is met. Do you find employees rushing through jobs without taking the time to be careful?

    Employees who fall on the left end of this scale tend to rush through tasks without fully completing them. If they are in charge of a duty that requires daily, repeatable actions, employees may become sloppy in their work. This is because these people tend to see monotonous tasks as easily done and therefore should be finished quickly and not require too much thought. Although these employees may be more comfortable responding to short-notice situations, they may also have the urge to be impulsive and draw conclusions too quickly.

    A chef cooks food all day. Disregarding a note from the waitress on a ticket about a fish allergy, he uses the same utensil to cook a burger that he’d been using for salmon. The customer, awaiting the ambulance to treat her child’s anaphylactic shock, is not only unhappy, but most likely isn’t coming back.

    The right end of the scale includes employees who tend to be more responsible and cautious. They follow through on duties and take the time to be careful and do a quality job. These people typically make sure a decision is the right one instead of acting on impulse. They are careful not to miss details even though they may be in charge of a repetitive duty. Because they are more serious-minded, they provide the most quality every time perform a task.

Because these scales deal with the way people carry out tasks and their attitude toward details, they provide insight on how good or bad a person will be at providing Quality Focus.

Since all industries rely on quality services to maintain and grow their customer base, companies need employees who enjoy performing at their best. Employees who have attention to detail, follow through on tasks, and take the time to do a good job are the best for providing the most quality.

To learn more about using competency models to predict success, download our Competency Spotlight eBooks for Corporate Managers, Retail Managers, or Restaurant Managers.

The Competency Spotlight series focuses on the personality traits measured by OutMatch assessments, and how these traits impact performance. No one measure can say with 100% accuracy how an employee will behave, but considering these competencies can help you identify candidates that are ‘prewired’ to be successful in a particular job type.

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