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WTF is Quality

How  DollarShaveClub  describes their  quality  blades

How DollarShaveClub describes their quality blades

Everyone has an idea of what makes something “quality,” from food to clothing, music and movies. Often, quality is used to indicate value, but this isn’t always the case. Sometimes quality refers to an item being better, a quantitative comparative measure. Quality can mean any number of things because it is purely subjective, it’s conditional and perceptual. It’s a feeling. It satisfies you.

Right now while writing, Miles Davis plays in the background as the fresh morning scent of coffee, eggs and bacon fill the room. This seems like a damn fine morning with a quality breakfast. My Doctor surely thinks otherwise. And as for Davis? Quality tunes, no doubt, although I am no aficionado and there is undoubtedly those out there who would argue differently.

Maybe a quality morning to you is watching the sunrise with some tea and a bagel. Perhaps you read the newspaper or do yoga. Who knows, maybe you sleep until noon and skip mornings altogether. We’re not judging (actually, that sounds great). Again, everyone has their own idea of quality because everyone has their own feelings of satisfaction. We always want you to be satisfied.

But then why do we continue to use a term that lacks any one specification? Why do we value a phrase that, with its constant use, borders closer to cliché than concrete? Can anything be quality if everything is quality?

Maybe, maybe not – but that’s for you to decide. For us, quality is a form of accountability. It’s saying, “Hey, we hold ourselves to a high standard because that’s how you treat yourself and we support that, and we want to do our part.” We know that if we slip then you suffer and that doesn’t sit well with us. If you consider us an inferior brand then, well guess what, that’s exactly what we are even if we don’t believe it ourselves. So now we’re left with no choice but to prove along every step of the way that we are superior, that we won’t slip. We’re sourcing a veteran staff to bring the best minds to the table, we’re endlessly researching the best and strongest materials for our products, and our production approach is highly effective.

Of course, there are trade-offs to our philosophical commitments. We focus less on our bottom line, we still have some inefficient methods, and we’ll certainly never be content with ourselves. This is what quality stands for at JM, it’s about pushing and reaching, harnessing that motivation and inspiration to tackle tomorrow by making it better than today.


Written By: J.K. Thompson