Love Your Deviations and Embrace Change

Valentine’s day.

For centuries, the 14th of February has been seen as a day of love – a day to express your innermost feelings to those you hold dear. For some, today will be a nerve-wrecking day; will their love be answered? For others, today will be a warm day, filled with flowers, chocolate and – most importantly – love.

On the other hand, for companies today is likely to be like any other day; employees and co-workers will get to work, do their tasks, maybe eat a candy heart or two, and then head home. However, Valentine’s Day celebrates a message that all organizations should remember and embrace: share your love and passion.

Take a moment and ask yourself: how do we engage in our work at my workplace? Do we spend everyday like the one before, only focusing on our own tasks, or do we raise our heads and consider what could be improved? Do we encourage each other to point out deficits in our organization or do we frown at the extra work it undoubtedly leads to?

SAM has for decades been working together with Scania to improve and solidify their principles, making them an integrated part of the organization. One of the corner stones has been the slogan “Love Your Deviations”. The expression stemmed from the desire to stimulate a work culture where pointing out deviations and deficiencies was highly valued, even to the point where a “good day” is a day with plenty of deviations. It is after all relatively easy to keep a high morale when everything runs as expected, it is when something isn’t working that one needs a mindset that embraces this challenge and sees it for what it is: an opportunity for change and improvement.

It is no secret that humans improve the fastest in subjects they love. When someone loves their work, finding areas where improvements can be made becomes second nature, so it is vital that the organization as a hole does not stifle this love and instead encourages it. At SAM we put a lot of emphasis on continuous improvement through calling the gap and visualizing it in a relatable way. We stress the need for regular yet quick cross-organizational meetings where deviations can be aired and the first steps towards a solution can be taken. With this, co-workers are spurred to think not only about their own difficulties – and triumphs – but about their colleagues’ as well.

Everyone is engaged. Everyone cares.

At first, this principle of loving your deviations was something that “sat in the walls” at Scania – it was rooted deep in the organization but it was abstract hard to quantify. By now it has grown to reside within every employee, always present in day-to-day work – when you find a gap, you call it. As a result everyone works together to continuously improve the organization, big and small – be it making sure that the factory workers don’t run out of coffee or improving the next generation of low-emission engines.

Does your company love their deviations? Contact us and we can discuss it further!

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