A Saint Valentine’s Day Standard

February 14th, Saint Valentine’s Day. A day that many believe is all about romance and devotion. Although the actual legends are somewhat confusing. The more cynical amongst us might well believe it’s purely an invented excuse to line the coffers of florists, chocolatiers and greeting card makers.

Whatever your beliefs though, it is a day that focuses on relationships. My daughter raised a question a little while ago that made me think about it more. She asked, “how is it that you and Mum have managed to stay together for so long when many of my friends’ parents have split up? What’s the secret?”

My answer was that I come from a generation where, if something wasn’t working properly then you fixed it and that keeping anything working for a long period requires regular maintenance. She later said my response was typical of an engineer and I’ll take that as a compliment!


An International Standard for Relationships

Given that I now help companies who want to achieve International Standards certification in Quality and Data Security, I did wonder if there was an International Standard for Relationships. There is!  It’s called ISO 44001 and it’s the Collaborative Business Relationships Standard.

Skimming through that Standard, particularly the section on Operational Awareness, I found some specific requirements, namely:

Internal Assessment – understanding your own (organisation’s) strengths and weaknesses
Partner Selection – finding the right partner
Working Together – taking into account both joint objectives and those of the individual parties
Value Creation – bringing additional value to both partners through continual improvement
Staying Together – monitoring performance and behaviours, along with issues and disputes which will be inevitable but can strengthen relationships if handled effectively.

Perhaps we should adopt this as the Saint Valentine’s Day Standard?

If you want to know how International Standards can benefit your business, please contact us for a free initial discussion (but do note that we’re not relationship counsellors!). You can send us a message at www.performanceplus.co.uk or call us on 01284 330400.

We work with small to medium size businesses across the East Anglia Region covering Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.

Norwich, Norfolk; Ipswich, Suffolk; Cambridge; Colchester and Chelmsford, Essex