Those of us who watch "Little Britain" would no doubt be familiar with the bank clerk sketch.

She would listen to the customer, then offer a seemingly-perfect product to the customer. The customer would be delighted, and keen to sign-up.

The bank clerk would then tap on her computer, and after a pause, turn to the customer and say i a deadpan voice "Computer says no." The sketch would end with a shot of the crestfallen customer.

What a perfect illustration of how the adherence to a blind process can so easily derail all semblance of reason! Bureaucracies by their nature are prone to losing sight of the ultimate value-creation in favour of indulging in forms and procedures. Methinks quality certification has gone too far when fear of the auditor overrides the fear of losing customers!