Thoughts for the day on business issues

• Companies lacking the understanding that business is people period everything else comes after. Employees who feel valued are what separates a great company from mediocre companies. • Lack of communication between company departments. Too many projects fall behind or fail due to the lack of communication between departments. It is the job of upper management to prevent that from happening. You do that by getting out of the damn office and visiting the departments. • Lack of communication with suppliers. I am a firm believer that most supply problems start with the company at the top, not leading the supply chain. Companies install supplier management systems and let the system take over. T

You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make it drink

Alpha company approached DMI to cnc router cut blanks for a special project that they were staring. They would provide material, and the cnc cutting files and DMI would provide cutting time. This was a perfect arrangement for both companies. Having a very high standard for DMI, and the parts that we produce, I could see that the provided cut files were not cutting parts to our high standard. Alpha company, as standard procedure in their facility, had people taking the pieces cut on their router and sand the edges to clean up the parts for the next stage of production. My goal for DMI when taking outsourced parts from another manufacturer is to produce better parts and to out-hustle their

Your company has a culture, improve it don't break it

I spend my spare time studying all things business, of particular interest is the implementation of the various quality and productivity systems such as Lean, 5S, Six Sigma, Kaizen, ISO etc. My observation is as follows bad company culture matters, and a great company culture matters. Neither culture is permanent; the bad is improvable, and the good can be dragged down. How does that relate to quality and productivity systems? An understanding of how the new system fits into your company culture is imperative to the success of the system. I have worked with companies in which the system and not the product was the focus of the company. The result unhappy employees, poor supplier relations,

Just maybe there is not a shortcut

I just started a new Tom Peters audiobook, The Excellence Divide. In reading the reviews of the book, a reviewer complained that Tom Peters offered nothing new over what he has provided over the past forty years. I suggest to the reviewer that the basic framework for excellence in business has not changed over time. There are different approaches but no short cuts. Excellence in business takes effort, and as Tom Peters has been hammering this issue for forty years, it starts with people, and it ends with people. Take care of your people, and your people will take care of your business. You want that person who is the last contact with your customer or patient to be a happy and satisfied em

Being the larger company gives a false impression of being the better problem solver

Why being the larger company has little to do with problem-solving. In both examples, DMI is the much smaller company with employee levels numbering less than ten, and the two companies mentioned each having employee levels in the several hundred. The difference being in the diversity of experience brought to the table by DMI. In the 1990's DMI was producing small cabinets and assemblies for AC, a general aviation aircraft interiors company. AC had won the interiors contract for the presidential aircraft known as Air Force 1. AC had built and installed furniture in AF1, and during testing, the high gloss finish and high-pressure laminate on work surfaces was showing signs of stress and dev


My reflections gathered through reading, listening, personal work experience and observation 

The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn't said.

Peter Drucker


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