24 Jan Continuous Improvement is a Mindset. Click to keep reading…
Happy New Year 2019. 2018 was a fantastic year for most businesses – mine included. Thank you to all our customers for the business you placed with our group over the past year(s).
As we look forward to 2019, expectations are that this is going to be another strong year for the manufacturing industry. One of the challenges that growth presents is how do we stay ahead of the growth, and continue to grow revenue (and profits) along with improving customer service? I believe individuals and companies have to continuously challenge themselves to improve. Ford Motor Company embodies this attitude by stating, “We don’t want to raise the bar, we want to be the bar!!” The question to ask is “are we satisfied with where we are or do we think we can do better?” I don’t know about you, but I’m always looking to accomplish more, help more customers, increase our profitability, and become a better human being.
David Hall in Industry Week Magazine laid out four basic areas of improvement that every organization can tackle. They are as follows:
- EASIER: By making the process or job easier for the employee, it should automatically lower costs, decrease employee frustration, and increase product quality since the operator would tend to be less frustrated. It could also make the working environment safer.
- BETTER: As mentioned above, every company should be looking for ways to make their product better, make the work environment better, etc. You have to be aware of the cost that the market will bear, but it’s hard to argue that a product can be “too good”.
- FASTER: Time is money, so any place you can improve output WITHOUT sacrificing quality or safety is a win. Output improvements make the most sense when the job is made easier, because it’s difficult to ask employees to simply keep working harder.
- CHEAPER: Any improvement in profit margin is always a win. It’s key that you never sacrifice the process and quality just to make it cheaper. There are several ways to lower costs; changing materials, improving output, lowering labor costs, and more.
As previously mentioned, never compromise safety. Employee safety is always #1.
If your company is already highly profitable, has a great culture, promotes diversity, and is growing, never be satisfied. Continuous improvement is a state of mind. –Commentary provided by John Walker, Lupton Associates’ Business Development professional