Editor’s Corner

The Editor’s Corner | Mot de l’éditeur

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, Quality Management Professional, CSSGB

How things change.

If you had asked me in April 2020 if it would be possible to have an evening of Pecha Kucha presentations done virtually, I would have said “Nah, it won’t work, and it certainly would not be the same as having it in person.

In fact, I did say that at some point in 2020, when as a Section Leadership Team, we discussed what events would work in the new virtual reality (pun intended . . . I think).

Well, fast forward two years, and as of April 27, 2022, I can happily say that my statement was only 50% correct.

Our Pecha Kucha Night held on April 27th was definitely not the same as having it in person; and I do hope that we can soon start having face-to-face events again.

That said, the event did work! Three different speakers presenting three Pecha Kucha presentations with three separate Q&A sessions . . . it worked! After months and months of work within our Team to get the concept and practice of webinars just right, it was finally decided to give the Pecha Kucha Night a try. And although there were a few minor hiccups, I walked away from the evening (and over to my sofa to some television before going to bed ;-)) with a feeling of satisfaction and gratitude . . . gratitude to the speakers, the attendees and men and women of our Section Leadership Team who work “behind the scenes” to put it all together and then to pull it off.

Thank you to everyone involved. (Hopefully) see you in person next time.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

ALSO . . .  Please contact me or any one else on the Leadership team if you would like to:

1) Write and submit an article to be published in the Newsletter.

2) Write a review of one of the upcoming monthly webinars for the “Had You Been There” section.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner | Mot de l’éditeur

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, Quality Management Professional, CSSGB

My days have been pretty busy for the past number of weeks, so you will forgive me if I have not taken any QUALITY time to think about what to write about here this month.

Did you happen to watch the QUALITY movie I recommended to you last month? If you did, I hope you enjoyed it.

Another question for you: have you signed up for our next QUALITY webinar later this month?

This will be our 6th Pecha Kucha Night event since 2014 and I will be hosting again. Myself and our speakers will do our QUALITY best to make sure the evening is entertaining and educational for everyone. If you have not yet signed up, CLICK HERE and do so.

Wow, I was worried I would have nothing of QUALITY to speak of 😉

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

ALSO . . .  Please contact me or any one else on the Leadership team if you would like to:

1) Write and submit an article to be published in the Newsletter.

2) Write a review of one of the upcoming monthly webinars for the “Had You Been There” section.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner | Mot de l’éditeur

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, Quality Management Professional, CSSGB

In all the years that I have been the Newsletter Editor for the ASQ Montreal Chapter, I don’t think I have ever discussed or reviewed a movie that I have seen.

Well, I don’t plan on giving you a review or even discussing it much (the eye of the beholder being what it is), but I will encourage you, if you are a subscriber to Netflix, to watch the documentary “Downfall: The Case Against Boeing“.

The documentary, released in February 2022, details the 2 fatal crashes of the Boeing 737 Max jets in October 2018 and March 2019 that claimed the lives of 346 people in total. A good part of the film that will certainly be of interest to the Quality professional is how an ownership and culture change at Boeing (towards shareholder satisfaction and away from a “Quality and Safety First” mentality) directly caused the crashes.

As someone who has spent a good portion of his Quality career in aerospace, as well as time as a supplier to Boeing, it gave me only a small feeling of relief that any work I did for the company did not involve the 737 Max. That said seeing interviews in the film with Quality professionals and others, detailing how the importance of their work was gradually minimized in the name of corporate greed was not fun to watch. I can only hope that after having its company name dragged through the mud, that they can do a 180 and return to the mindset that made them the aerospace giant of the past.

Time will tell. In the meantime, click on the image below to read more about the film, and I encourage you to watch the film on Netflix.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

ALSO . . .  Please contact me or any one else on the Leadership team if you would like to:

1) Write and submit an article to be published in the Newsletter.

2) Write a review of one of the upcoming monthly webinars for the “Had You Been There” section.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner | Mot de l’éditeur

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, Quality Management Professional, CSSGB

It has been a while since I gave you all a meme. So here is one I created using a picture that I took during a vacation in Antigua in 2012.

Share to your heart’s content . . . and always be careful when moving appliances.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

ALSO . . .  Please contact me or any one else on the Leadership team if you would like to:

1) Write and submit an article to be published in the Newsletter.

2) Write a review of one of the upcoming monthly webinars for the “Had You Been There” section.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner | Mot de l’éditeur

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, Quality Management Professional, CSSGB

Both during and since the holidays, I came across a few examples of Risk Management, and not in a work related Quality context. More so in an “everyday dealing with our current world situation” context.

With the most recent revisions of ISO 9001, AS 9100 and other standards, the concepts and expectations of Risk Management were finally put into play. Ultimately replacing the long ineffective “Preventive Action”, the principles of Risk Management, Assessment, Mitigation, Acceptance, etc. all now require implementation into a company’s DNA.

But we do this all the time in our daily lives, so it is nothing new: it is only that the average person does not refer to these kinds of actions/decisions by the Quality terms. A simple example . . . when you properly clean the snow off of your car before driving, you have reduced/mitigated the risk of being in an accident because you could not see properly out of the windows.

During a recent conversation with a friend of mine who now lives in Toronto with her partner, she told me that on New year’s Eve, they saw her cousin’s wife. She was in town from Newfoundland and they had not seen each other for quite a bit. Days later after flying home, her cousin’s wife tested positive for the “C” word (see Editor’s Note below): as a result, they both had to start monitoring their symptoms. That said, they mutually assessed the scenarios in advance and decided to accept the risk of seeing this person, knowing that they were both fully vaccinated and boosted, as well as both working from home.

Closer to Montreal, my partner attended a small family dinner on Christmas Eve with her sister, her sister’s partner and their father. These three are all people with whom she has had regular contact with since March 2020, and is always aware of their situations. Conversely, the following day her sister’s partner’s family was invited over to her sister’s place for a Christmas lunch. As much as she wanted to attend that as well, based on her risk assessment, my partner decided to decline that invitation: the reality was that unlike the previous day’s get-together, she has not had any regular contact with these people, and is not always aware of there situations. So she ultimately mitigated her risk by not going.

Risk Management tools are easy to understand and use, and I am not just saying that because of my profession. Given our current world conundrum, they should be at the forefront of everyone’s thinking patterns.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

ALSO . . .  Please contact me or any one else on the Leadership team if you would like to:

1) Write and submit an article to be published in the Newsletter.

2) Write a review of one of the upcoming monthly webinars for the “Had You Been There” section.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner | Mot de l’éditeur

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, Quality Management Professional, CSSGB

As is customary for the final Newsletter issue of a calendar year, I would like to take up this space by wishing all our readers and ASQ Montreal Section members the safest and happiest of holiday seasons. I sincerely hope this coming year-end finds you in better and more celebratory circumstances than in 2020.

As well, thank you to everyone who takes the time to read the monthly Newsletter (monthly here means January to June and September to November). It continues to be a pleasure being the one who puts this together for our membership.

Here’s looking at a better 2022.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

This past August, I decided to resurrect a tradition that my father and I used to do every year when I was younger: go see professional tennis at the (now named) IGA Stadium in Montreal. Every year on the professional tennis circuit, both Montreal and Toronto host tournaments in Canada, with the cities alternating each year with regards gender; this year, it was the women who played in Montreal.

I was lucky enough that on the day I went, I got to see Canadian Leylah Fernandez play against the U.K.’s Harriet Dart. Although Dart ended up winning the match, it was Fernandez who only a month later would make it all the way to the U.S. Open finals with an incredible string of challenging victories. Both her and male counterpart Felix Auger Aliassime did Canada proud with their amazing play.

One interesting thing I realized on that day in early August day: not only were there no line judges on the court, but as well there was no net judge either. Although electronic technology has been used in tennis for years (to help with verifying questionable human line calls), this was my first time seeing service calls being made electronically as well. There was no one crouched at the end of the court with their fingers wrapped around the top of the net, ready to call “let” if the player’s serve happened to touch the top white seal/border of the net. Replacing the human hand is a rectangular sensor that is installed under the border, which gets triggered whenever a served ball touches the border.

Upon subsequent reading, I learned that in order to reduce staff due our current world situation, the 2020 U.S. Open tournament used electronic judging on most matches, excluding those held at their 2 big courts (Arthur Ashe Stadium and Louis Armstrong Stadium). At this year’s 2021 Australian Open, all matches used electronic judging for the first time in a Grand Slam event.

So yes, it seems that in order to reduce the amount of possible human interaction during a match, the use of electronic judging technology has increased and will likely never revert back to its human ways. That said, electronic technology ultimately began being used in tennis (as well as other sports such as cricket, badminton, and even snooker) in order to reduce and ideally eliminate something Quality practitioners know very well: HUMAN ERROR.

With the release of the 5th edition of the ISO 9001 standard (ISO 9001:2015), the principles of Risk Management were imbedded into the standard, an approach that the AS9100 standard had already done with its 2009 revision. Organizations had to (finally!) make risk management an integrated part of their management system. As well with the 2015 revision, the element of human error finally found a place in 8.5.1 Control of production and service provision, which states:

“The organization shall implement production and service provision under controlled conditions. Controlled conditions shall include, as applicable:

g) the implementation of actions to prevent human error”

So organizations are now in a situation where they are mandated (as applicable) to evaluate their production and service operations for ways to  prevent humans from being, well, occasionally human. Mistakes occur, we all know this . . . even during tennis matches. You can easily go on YouTube and find plenty of video compilations of players disputing rulings that they saw one way, but the human line or net judge saw/felt another. So by slowly implementing electronic judging into the game over the years, the tennis world (aka the organization) has been attempting to reduce/eliminate the human error from the game . . . by eliminating humans ;-). That is one way to go (extreme!), but ultimately the standard’s minimum expectation is for companies to look at how to best mitigate the risk that a human fault may occur.

One judge that still remains on the tennis court during matches is the chair umpire, so there is still a human overlord during the proceedings. That said, it would not surprise me if in my lifetime that role also goes . . . electronic.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article. Photo taken (and edited) by Michael Bournazian.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

Michael BournazianBy Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

In June 2021, I published my 100th newsletter for the ASQ Montreal Section (the English section when I first started, now the bilingual English/French section). Never did I think I would reach a triple digit milestone such as this. When I took over the role back in September 2010 from current Section Chair Chantale Simard, my feelings were more akin to “survival” than to “excellence” and “mastery”. I had no idea if I would do a good job, no idea if I would enjoy doing it, plenty of “no ideas”.

What drove me to accept the challenge originally was simply to do something outside of my comfort zone. The reason I started going to ASQ dinner presentations in 2009 was to learn different languages of Quality. Although I enjoyed my job and the company I worked for at the time, I felt my Quality vocabulary was becoming myopic: often I would say to myself such things as “There must be a different way to do this”, or “I bet Company X does this better than us”. In the end, attending those initial dinner presentations helped me meet new people in the Quality field, but also helped answer some of these things I would (often frustratingly) be asking myself on the job.

As a result, this put me in touch with others on the Montreal Section Committee at the time, and eventually thanks to Chantale’s belief in me (a belief that I did not fully have yet), I took on the role of Newsletter Editor. Slowly and surely, as I have done with many other things in my life, I learned how to best make everything work for me. And so to this day, I continue to enjoy putting together these newsletters.

Not every edition has been easy:

  • There was the one I started back in September 2011 and hoped to finish before leaving for a business trip to Berlin. Unfortunately, a car accident a few days before leaving left me uninjured but my car a total loss. With a trip to prepare for and a new car to purchase, I had to call in the help of the previous Editor (Mme. Simard encore!) to finish what I started.
  • Also in November 2013, when I spent most evenings after work in a hospital watching my Father slowly lose his life. At the time, I thought of asking for help, for someone else to step in just for this month. In the end, I told myself that putting in the time (even at the midnight hours) to do it myself would be a good distraction from what I knew was going to be a difficult next few months.
  • And finally, I cannot forget all the times I would have to be travelling with work, doing audits during the day and then in my hotel room in the evening catching up on “the regular job” AND working on the newsletter. Somehow I always got it done: that said, I think back now and wonder “HOW?”.

In conclusion, as a woman who should have been President once said: “It takes a village”.  So a huge THANK YOU to all those who have contributed over the past (now 101) issues of this newsletter. You know who you are, you are many, so please accept this single yet large sign of gratitude from me. You have all helped make my working life, and my life in general, better.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

Before I wish you a happy and safe summer, as I normally do in the June newsletter, something interesting to touch on:

This newsletter marks the 100th of said publications that I have written, edited, assembled, reviewed, stressed over, cursed at, and just plain enjoyed doing since I first took on the role of Editor in 2010. At that time, Chantale Simard saw something in me that I did not know I was capable of, so I was wary to accept the challenge. But soon enough, I decided that the old adage “no chances, no advances” needed some actual practice. One hundred newsletters later, and it still feels like one of the best chances I took on myself.

My original want was to write something special in this newsletter regarding this milestone. Well, now you’ll have to suffer through a long, hot summer and wait until the September newsletter to see what I come up with. I am positive you will all find ways to occupy your time until them.

OK, now back to normal broadcasting . . .

As is customary for me in the June newsletter, I would like to thank you, the reader, for taking the time to read this newsletter. I do hope that the effort that goes into putting it together by myself and others shows, and that you get something positive out of it every time you read it.

I, as well as the entire ASQ Executive Committee, are fully aware that we continue to live in strange times. With all the additional stresses and changes we have adapted to, I would not blame anyone for not being able to give the ASQ as much attention as they would normally give. Rest assured that we understand and that we will continue to be here to promote the Quality profession for you, to the best of our abilities.

So finally . . . I wish you a safe, happy and QUALITY summer season. After the completion of the June 16th event, we will be back in September 2021.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

A positive update on my Editor’s Corner article from February 2021. If you recall, I had 2 good friends of mine, both of whom work in the Quality field, lose their jobs.

The positive is that as of this month, both have started new, permanent employment. They were both let go from longstanding jobs with aerospace companies, and have now started new roles with different aerospace companies.

In both their cases, it took a few months, a few interviews, and few frustrations. But hopefully they can now settle into their new Quality roles. I wish them the best of luck.

And if you are reading this and are currently in the situation they used to be in, then click on the link above and read my full article on things to keep in mind and to do with regards to “Job Searching 2021”. All the best and none of the worst to you.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

Michael BournazianBy Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

If you are a member of ASQ, then certainly you receive the monthly ASQ magazine “Quality Progress”. And if you read closely the April 2021 issue, then surely you realized that a few of our ASQ Montreal committee members were part of a group of 4 people who authored the article entitled “A Beginner’s Guide to Virtual Events“.

I am very proud of both J.P. Amiel and Raymond Dyer, who have both worked very hard to make sure that our current situation of “Virtual Webinar Events only” is well executed every last Wednesday of the month. As well, they have shown an openness to ideas and a regular drive to continuously improve the process of doing these kinds of events, and making them fruitful for everyone attending.

If you have not already read the article, then I encourage you to CLICK HERE and start reading. You must login to your ASQ account first to access the full article.

Congratulations as well to the other 2 co-authors, Ruth Stanley and Michel Guenette. Great job everyone!

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

Michael BournazianBy Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

The February 2021 power crisis in the state of Texas, that continues to cause issues even after all the snow and ice has melted away, was something to see.

I have been to the state on several occasions in my professional life: Dallas twice, and Houston, Tyler, Abilene and Lufkin once each. These trips were never scheduled to take into account any specific season because, well, it’s Texas, and never did I assume at any time I may want to avoid, say, Dallas in January because it would snow a lot.

Politics aside, the causes as to why the grids failed will be interesting to find out, to say the least. On February 16, 2021, Governor Greg Abbott declared that there will be an investigation of the power outage to determine long-term solutions. Good idea: of course he then turned around a few days later and declared Texas 100% open for business with no mask mandate, so not so good. But I digress.

I have written in the past about catastrophic failures in industry (British Petroleum, Toyota, Boeing), all with a sense of  “look at what these buggers (clean language folks) did?! How dare they?! There better be some honest-to-goodness investigation, cause & corrective action/risk analysis/restructuring/rewriting of processes/hirings/firings/blah blah blah.” To be honest, this was going to be my “tone” for this article.

And then, not long after, I was reminded of something: the January 1998 Ice Storm.

Remember, that storm that came through and affected Eastern Ontario, Southern Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, knocking out power to millions of people for days, weeks, and even months in some cases? At the time, the power grids and installations in this part of the world (aka Canada, the cold snowy country) did not fare much better. I personally remember my family taking in some relatives for one week when their power was out; and then when theirs came back, they immediately returned the favour when ours went out for a week!

Eventually, lives got back to normal, as they will in Texas. But can either of these situations be considered the better of the other?

* In this corner, we have Texas, an American state synonymous with sun, heat and desert. So power grids ill-equipped to handle snow and ice would not be too surprising. That said, the effects of global climate change have been evident for decades, and abnormal weather events have become unfortunately normal. And sometimes, it does take a disaster to make people realize that a risk is real.

* And in this corner, we have Canada, a country synonymous with snow at every given stereotype. You would have expected the power grids here to have been well-equipped to withstand snow, ice, wind, hail, freezing rain and the like. And yet . . . well, you know.

So how was my tone?

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael BournazianBy Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

Since I last wrote to you in January, I have had 2 good friends of mine, both of whom work in the Quality field, lose their jobs. Both had been with their respective companies for over a decade, but in both cases, cutbacks and downsizing needed to happen, so their seniority, experience and dedication meant little.

As someone who has been through this myself, I know that starting over and finding new employment can be difficult under the best of circumstances: under our current world circumstances, well, difficult suddenly becomes DIFFICULT.

So I am using my Editor’s Corner this month to highlight a few things that I believe are important when it comes to job searching. If you are reading this and unfortunately find yourself in the same boat, maybe these tips will help you find your way to a new shore.

1) CVs and LinkedIn: Nowadays, a solid and comprehensive LinkedIn profile is as (if not more) important that the paper/Word CV. Recruiters and headhunters use LinkedIn to easily search for candidates that fit the profile of the job they are trying to fill, so making sure that your profile properly summarizes your work experiences, education and training is vital. In the end, make sure both your CV and LinkedIn profile are up-to-date and “attractive”. And don’t forget to use job sites like Monster, Jobillico, Indeed and the like.

2) References: Most (if not all) companies will ask for references during the interviewing/hiring process, so make sure you have (if possible) 3-4 reliable references. A mix of people you have both worked with and worked for is good, and of course, make them aware that you are on the job market and get their buy-in that they will give you a solid reference when called upon. Finally, I have found that having the vital information regarding these references summarized on a single page very handy, especially when asked for them in an interview.

3) Interviews: It’s been said/heard many times, but prepare for your interviews: have copies of your CV, references and certificates with you; research the company ahead of time, as you may be asked what you know about them and/or why you want to work for them; have a list of questions to ask them, it shows that you are prepared and interested. Finally, unless you are very lucky and get hired at your first interview, you are more than likely going to have more interviews that don’t end with a job offer than those that do. The important thing is to not get discouraged, you are probably not the only one who applied and got rejected; and if you do get discouraged, don’t stay down for too long.

4) Zoom/Skype/Teams: Given our current world situation Part 1 . . . the previously discussed interviews may very likely happen virtually. So make sure that you are accustomed to using the current plethora of online meeting tools.

5) Working from Home or On-Site: Given the current world situation Part 2 . . . it is important to determine your comfort level with working at the company site, and therefore, in potential close proximity to other humans. Not all jobs can be done from your home bubble. So make sure to take this into consideration when researching an opportunity or being interviewed for it: it may be important for both your physical and mental health.

6) Any Given Hour: One important thing to finish on . . . when I first entered the job market in the early 1990s, the Internet was not a major player in our lives, so job searching mainly took place during traditional working hours and certainly not on weekends. Well, no more: with everything electronic and online, you can basically job search 24/7 if you wanted to. I am not advocating being on your computer all day and night looking for and applying to job opportunities, but realize that even on a Saturday or Sunday, an opportunity may pop up and the recruiter may be there to see your application. The early bird catches the worm, but so does the omnipresent bird.

I hope these tips have helped someone in some fashion. Good luck to you.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

Michael BournazianBy Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

Greetings! And a (hopefully) better new year to everyone. If are not happy to see 2020 come to an end, then I would like to know what you have been smoking since March 2020.

I like to think of myself as a realistic person and thinker, leaning more towards optimist. So I currently do believe that 2021 will at some point give us our “old” lives back. And hopefully, that will include in-person ASQ events again. I believe we have succeeded wonderfully with our online webinars since March 2020; that said, it would be nice to be in a room again and actually meet the other people in that room, and watch the speaker live and in person. Fingers permanently crossed then.

One big change that we are introducing this month is our new, revamped website and newsletter. For me, the newsletter has been a source of pride since 2010 when I took over from Chantale Simard as its editor-in-chief. For 10 years, I used NVu software to create these newsletters 9 months out of 12; now we have switched over to using WordPress to create and publish. Much like when I started in 2010, I expect there to be a learning curve until I feel like I can fly the plane on my own; thankfully, your trusted and diligent ASQ Montreal Committee is a supportive and generous bunch of guys and gals, so I know I have several parachutes at my disposal if I need to “eject” 😉

In the end, the important thing is to give you, the reader and ASQ member, an enjoyable reading experience and a source of vital information for your Quality focused careers. That is, and will continue to be, the ultimate goal.

So here’s to WordPress! And here’s to you! And here’s to 2021 . . . hopefully the learning curve towards normalcy is not to steep.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Neither the “C” word nor the “P” word were used during the writing of this article.

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Any feedback? Click on the link and let me know.

Thank you, all the best and none of the worst.

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

As this is the final Newsletter of 2020, I want to take up this space by saying THANK YOU to everyone who has taken the time to read them this year.

This year had been unique to say the least. So I think I speak for all my Section Leadership Team colleagues when I say that your participation in 2020 ASQ events it is wholeheartly appreciated. We have more coming in 2021, so stay tuned.

Finally, a thank you to my former work colleague Diego Lythgoe on his presentation to the Section last month. It was wonderful to see how he has taken his Quality expertise onwards and upwards. Continued success Diego!

The Editor’s Corner

Michael Bournazian

Michael Bournazian

By Michael Bournazian, Eng., Newsletter Editor, ASQ Senior Member, CSSGB

So the challenge to myself last month to not write about the “P” word or the “C” word has come and gone. I spent that article talking about participating in the ISO 9001:2015 revision committee for Canada.

One of the nice things that came from publishing that piece was having someone actually reach out to me and ask how they can participate, in a similar capacity, for the next revision. I was more than happy to provide them the information.

It also made me realize that 7-8 years ago when I participated in that activity, everything I did was done remotely (or as we say more often nowadays, “virtually”).

I never met one person with whom I communicated, and I never participated in any face-to-face meetings. Everything happened through the (technological) magic of telephones, computers, modems, e-mails, Internet, and yes, even Webex. Everything I did back then mirrors what I believe would NEED to be done now, if I was to participate in such a committee again. So my experience with working virtually and helping to achieve something with a global reach was already there.

Why then was I so apprehensive with everything going virtual with regards to my work in March 2020?

In retrospect, I think the initial (and continued) unknown of how our current situation will be resolved fed that apprehension.

As well, back in 2012-13 during my ISO involvement, and certainly as close as earlier this year, the OPTION of doing things live-and-in-person or virtually existed.

Not so much now at this given time, and humans by nature like to have options, the more the better. When you go to an ice cream establishment, do you want only chocolate and vanilla as choices? Hell no, 31 flavours no less, and while I am here, create a new one.

As Quality professionals, we often are presented with options: Which problem solving tool to use? Which SPC method to use? Immediately quarantine the nonconforming part or continue processing to gain some advancement and then quarantine? Sometimes the options are plentiful and require thought; sometimes the options are narrow yet require equal or more thought.

And then there are times when options are taken from you without your say, and you have to make the best with what you have, or else nothing will move forward and get done.

So as I like to say to anyone who will listen . . . “I am not perfect, but I always try to do my best. That way, I can never say I failed”.

OPTIONS: Make the best of them.

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