All entries for January 2009

January 29, 2009

Controllable factors and Noise

Todays excercise in class made me thinak about my life and the way I was leading it. I was wondering if there are any controllable factos which I can improve on and any noise. To lead a happy life there were a few option : A1 work very hard, A2: work just about required. B1: importance of understanding people and paying back to the society. B2 : just do the minimum required as c citized such as pay taxes and so on. There could be noise such as recession, natural calamity. I need to improve my quality as a person so that such things do not affect me.


I realised its important to be loved and to spread love by being nice to everyone around. I wont make this into a philosophical blog but its very interesting how we have controllable factors and noise in our daily life too. Be it going to class on time od following eithics, life gives you many options. It all about choosing the right choices. I would probably love to do statistical analysis and choose which path to take


I never really thought that a simple thing like making a paper helicopter/rocket could have so many factors. The method to come up with the best specification without tring out the 100 possible combination was really amazing. I am loving this module so much so far. I wonder whats in store for me tomorrow :D


Six Sigma

During the last few days I have realised how important is training, communication and team work important in six sigma. I have seen my self improve tremendously in putting the wheels on the plane from 7 to 8 mins to 2 mins 30 seconds. I did make some changes to the way in which I put the wheels as wellwhich further helped me. Communicationhelped as my group members showed me better ways of tightening the screws to the plane by using the scrw driver and holder instead of using hand. I saw that everyone in our team gave inputs and everyone was involed so that was great. Though we were far from acheiving six sigme, we did manage to save money in the game in the process. I was happy that I was no longer the bottleneck in my team thanks to my training and team members support. Since I was the last person in the process I had to try and ensure standardization by passing on the plane every 3:30 mins. Though I nanaged to that in a few cases, in a few cases I did not as I was learning how to use the i-phone I was given by my team member to use.

What I also learnt is that its really important to keep the DMAIC process in mind. I usually like to jump to the analysing part of the problem and give ideas but I learnt how to be more patient and follow the process which gave me a goal. Defining and Measuring help me get goals rather than following a unguided path.

DMADV process though not used by our team this time around is very interesting as it helps you to design first.

What I like about six sigma is that it is very customer driven. I remember Paul tell us in class that "If Shareholders are king, then customer is God". You cannont keep anyone happy if your customers are not happy and go away. There is high importance of quality and reliability in this competitive world.




January 22, 2009

Common Cause and Special Cause Variation

The pmi has been a very very helpful tool. Who ever knew a thing like pens could reduce late deliveries to a considerable amounts.

It has been very interesting to read about common cause and special cause variation. If the system only has common cause variation then it is stable. Common causes cariation is withing your required level. Special Cause occurs if things go out of the limits. Something like machine failure one day which leads to no producation. Also having 8 or more points in a row below or above the normal required line is a special cause variation. Why is it that the machine is just under producing or overproducing?

I found professors example in class of the company which had high variation in the weekdays when managers were there, low on weekends when managers were not there really funny.

I really found plotting graphy, histograms, scattered point diagram, the fish bone diagram very useful. It opens up new ways of analysing things.


January 19, 2009

Deming and Leadership

I quite like what Dr. Deming says about not ranking the employees and trying to help the employees in need by special help and training. If the person still could not do well then the employee was movied to a newe position. I quite like this compared to Mr Jack Welch policy or ranking people.

Deming said more than supervision leadership was required. I leader first must see if there is a problem in the system or not. He must understand the common cause and special cause of the system. Sometimes it could be possible that the system is faulty and the employees cannot do anything about it. In this case supervision would not help. Knowing the system well would help.  If there is no problem then the leader must see how he is performing and how well is he spending time on things that are important.

Having "profound knowledge" is essential for the leader.


January 14, 2009

Waiverider and simplicity…..

I feel that waiverider dont have much to worry about. One of the directors said that if we change the contracter then the cost can come down by i think 30 %, also the redundant staff can be used in expanding into other markets and the leisure market is forecasted to be on a rise soon. It seems like all is good for the company if it makes a few changes.

Is it just me who finds this case straight forward or am I missing something......


January 13, 2009

I quite like the cognitive theory

Mr Gardner in his cognitive thoery says that there are three levels of leadership.

The ordinary leader "who simply relates the traditional story of the group in the highly effective way".

The innovative leader who "bring a new twist to the old story."

The visionary leader who creates a new story.

He also says that a leaders characteristic / personality does not provide a good enough explaination for a leaders success.

He says that  there are four characteristics that guide a leader:

1. A "active and dynamic relation between leader and follower"

2 Time period

3. Leader must act their ideas and convey them in words

4. Leader lead by his or her choice and the consent of others.



Firstly Personally I like the way how Mr Gardner has classified the three leaders. I think Mr Jack Welch is a good example of a visionary leader. After reading so much about hin in the last one week I realised he truly is a visionary leader.

Secondly I do agree that a leaders personality does not give suffiecent explantion for him/ her being a leader because I believe leaders are made and not born. One can always alter their personality if required.

I agree with the four characteristics as well. A leader must have either good or cordial realtion with his disciples. I personaly do no think I could work for a leader who I dont share a good or cordial relation with.

Time frame matters too. Sometimes being the right person at right time matters. Each business goes through differenct situations and finds its self in different senario al together.

Its important for a leader to prove himself for people to trust him or her. Even the President nominee of United States have to go through so many debates

I am not too sure about the last part of the leadership trait though about the consent of others. I mean you do not really choose your managers? do you???


Leadership and a "DIFFERENT" Vision…...

While looking for information for the LE assignment I came across an interesting note about vision. The leadership book by Philip Sadler said that a vision has to be different, something that is not aldready someones vision. It has to be something which is not obious, and "a vision has to reframe the known scene.


But what I do not understand is why cant we adopt somes vision which has been successful in the past. If Jack Welch had a vision that he wanted a boundryless, diverse company where everyone ( each individual) feels that they have a say and which worked well for GE then why cannot I adopt a similar vision too if I become a manager.

MR.Obama has a vision of a America where everyone is united and equal, african american, white, asian american, latino american. Where everyone has all the rights,  be it their ethinicity or their sexuality. No one is discriminated. Why cannot Mr.Gordon Brown have a similar vision.

Now you may argur that politics and business are two different things but I feel they are very closely related. Politicians have a great hand in deciding a lot of things related to the business and the economy. A good finance minister can really help businesses do well.


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