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Traditional Standards

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TraditionalTraditional standard setting is a form of control and is inefficient. It is when one entity is telling another entity what to do. The traditional expectation is that through setting standards a person can get anyone to comply with their way of thinking. There are two main problems with traditional standards:

1. Standard Followers will instantly turn any standard into a maximum. Meaning the standard will be the highest possible level of performance given and because of this mentality; standards will slowly lower performance. It will turn followers reactionary, doing just enough to meet the standard without getting punished.

2.It is attempting to take one person’s way of thinking and perfectly relay it to another person. As we know from the Influence vs. No Influence model, it is impossible to change how another individual thinks; any change must come from the individual themselves. Standards disregard the followers’ capability, assuming the Standard Setter can merely enforce his capability onto his followers. Generally anytime you have to tell someone to do something, you are setting a traditional standard, and it is outside the individual’s capability and will not be followed. If this were not the case, they would have already been doing what you told them.

Minimum standards are relayed in many different ways. House rules, contracts, business regulations, government laws, or orders/commands can be seen as standards. Traditional standards will never work to guarantee any level of performance. For standards to work they must be created based upon the capability of the followers. Correct standards are those which are never broken, because they match the capability of the followers. Expectations of correct standards are not that they will necessarily increase performance, but that they will correctly reflect the capability of the followers and the accurate level of performance to be expected.


Major points of Traditional Standards




Commonly Asked Questions

Why do people continue to do work with traditional standards?


Further Reading



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