I recently contracted with a local company for a service at my home. The team that did the work was excellent and I was very happy with the result, but interactions with the support staff in the field and office made it “hard to be their customer”. As I work with clients, I seldom find a procurement group that sees production or maintenance as a customer. They are seldom team players and sometimes take actions that are not in the best interest of value stream production because of how they are measured. If they are centralized, they take on a

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One of my friends was asked to provide feedback in writing to management on a new process in his workplace. This process had been so poorly implemented that it had divided segments of the workforce, torn apart well-functioning teams, and created mistrust by favoring some employees. My friend was upset about what had happened and recognized the problems that could have been avoided with a different approach, but was struggling with the exact words to write and had not decided whether to sign his name (optional). Then he remembered that part of the mission statement was printed on the company

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In a very interesting article entitled 'Sexual Harassment In The Workplace' by Barry S. Roberts and Richard A. Mann, the following realities were noted as current in the workplace.  First, many businesses operating in the United States know that sexual harassment exists and yet have failed to address the problem.  Secondly, recent news reports indicate that sexual harassment reaches the highest levels of management.  Third, although businesses know that the problem exists they appear unsure about what to do about it.  Fourth, as a result the specter of employer liability for sexual harassment continues to loom over the workplace. This

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Organizational Development is a long title for a large unbrella of improvement activities, both to profit and cultlure. When you start down the improvement path, you expect higher productivity, lower costs and bigger. profits. When you buy new equipment or upgrade equipment, you expect to use the capacity you paid for. You justify the purchase based on the value that the additional capacity will generate. You budget for the additional tons assuming that they will materialize. You also forecast lower costs for maintenance repairs and/or operating supplies. Then time passes… Frequently many improvement dollars don’t materialize as forecast; sometimes they

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When any process change or culture change issue is introduced, one of the first questions management asks is “How long will this take?” or “When will we see dollars flow to the bottom line?” Time is an important element in change, but it is important to remember that time devoted to change should not be considered a negative or a sacrifice that we want to minimize. Instead, time should be viewed is a critical element in success – without it, no real change occurs. Achieving lasting change requires time just like a seed requires time to sprout, grow roots and

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Trust is built on truth and truth can be seen when actions match words, when promises made are kept and when expectations that are set are met. When we see physical evidence of a promise come to pass, we can develop trust for the source of the promise that the next time a promise is made, it will also be kept. A so great relationships are born – at home and in organizations.     So… where does wisdom and change come in? WISDOM is a deep understanding and realization of people, things, events or situations, resulting in the ability

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Are you facing turnover at your company?  Probably not yet … but likely in the future.  According to the most recent Human Resource Executive® employees are more willing to “stick around…” at least for now.  “STICKING AROUND:  In a new survey of 533 employed Americans, 53 percent say they would prefer to stay with their current company, even if they were offered a good job at another organization.”  Source:  GfK Custom Research North America, New York.  Interesting.  Is it because unemployment is high and the economy is slow?  That would make sense.  But what will happen down the road when

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The Athlete within

Posted by Bryan Fass on January 01, 2000
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Category : Blog

Are your employees athletes?  Do they train, eat, sleep and prepare like athletes?  Do your employees follow a scripted routine prior to a sales call to “warm up”? Sadly the answer to all of these questions is no, yet we expect our employees to come to work happy, healthy, productive and free of distractions…right? Employees and YOU need to embrace workplace wellness and fitness to achieve these goals.  Instead of making the path toward these goals complicated and difficult to achieve ask your self this question. ?What do my employees need to be corporate athletes? ?What is hindering their ability

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For those of you that are responsible for cost control or analyze costs, you may receive total costs or a list of dollars spent by category each month. If you are lucky, dollars are split between fixed or variable. Fixed costs are dollars spent regardless of whether production is happening or not.Variable costs occur during or as the result of production – as part of the production “recipe”. If you are a superintendent being asked to control costs, ask for a breakdown of costs that are variable. Variable costs help you understand what you can control and are valuable to

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Does your vending machine hinder productivity?

Posted by Bryan Fass on January 01, 2000
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Category : Blog

The old saying you are what you eat still carries a lot of weight, now more than ever.  The foods we eat and the drinks we consume can actually impeed productivity and slow us down. Whats in your vending machine or cafeteria?  Are the foods natural, un-packaged, free of sugars and man made chemicals?  Are the drinks loaded with caffeine, sugars, artificial sweetners and additives? Food and drink additives can be linked to many of the cognitive and creativity issues that many issues face today.  You owe it to your employees and your company to invest in thier health. Do

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