Sunday, April 8, 2007

It's time to get Nitpicky ...

The dictionary definition of "nitpicky" is overly critical, esp. on trivial matters. I am not particularly fond of this definition and its negative connotations. While some of us do tend to get bogged down in "ministrivia," I would counter that in this age we need to be a bit more discriminating in order to counter the lackadaisical attitude that seems to be sweeping over the retail and service industries, at least from my perspective here in mid-Atlantic USA.

I'm sure many of you have heard the saying "Good, Fast, Cheap: Pick Two" My general complaint with the world today is that far too often the only choice seems to be "Fast and Cheap." And in fact, we seem to be faced increasingly with new, worse combinations like "Fast and Expensive" or even better "Slow and Expensive." Notice I didn't say "Good" at all. The concept of quality is a vanishing breed; one that I am hoping to help cultivate in my own small way. This blog will reward those who provide Quality and punish those who provide crap (to use a technical, industry term).

Quality (with a capital "Q") isn't just about a good product or service. It's about good packaging, that is easily understood and that doesn't take a blowtorch and crowbar to open. It's about all the parts being there, with good instructions on how to assemble them. It's about longevity; does it stop working in a year or in 10 years? If it breaks, can it be fixed or has the industry stopped supporting it, forcing you to add to the ever-growing piles of human waste all over the Earth. Has it been created using sustainable resources or clean technologies? Has it been created locally, thus supporting local economies and reducing the energy cost of transportation? Has it been created thoughtfully, with you in mind?

I am a firm advocate of long-term excellence, and that is what this blog is all about. It's easy to go out and find "Fast and Cheap" or any of its little cousins, but the Nitpicky Consumer is on a Crusade for Quality.

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