All entries for March 2011

March 29, 2011

Basic Maslow’s Hierarchy, Safety!

Today’s group meeting I was assigned to deal with Health & Safety and Environmental Management. It’s quite interesting topics and with no prior knowledge about these two subjects make me fire up to look supportive information. Yet, what surprise me that event I only deal with two things, the subject still can be categorized as huge topic. There are so many aspects that should be considered in order to achieve excellence organization that implement these principles. For instances, the responsible of organization to its environment and people start from procuring materials to developing communities in order to satisfy every single stakeholders related.

In the context of Health & Safety, I recalled my memory when I was asking by HSE manager in my previous organization to find appropriate supplier that can provide comprehensive training in subject of driving skills. You might curious that, why multinational company wants to spend hundred thousand pound in annual basis to give adequate training to its employee while they already passed test when get driving license? HSE manager said, at that time, that it’s becomes company responsible to ensure its employee to drive safety on the road because they provide corporate vehicle as part of their benefit. Thus, it parts of morale and social obligation from company to ensure that their valuable asset, people, are safe!

After having that such a conversation, I realize that a good or excellence organization should have comprehensive set of Health & Safety policy that cover everything in order provide assurance for its employees to feel safe. Thus, it parts of basic needs in Maslow’s hierarchy!

Complexity of Asset Management

After reading some material in KBAM website in order to make myself familiar with asset management, I can say this subject is huge! It covers almost every aspect of organization from end to end. Yet, my working experience provides preliminary insight following several things in facilities management such as; contract management, HSE, and Facility service. Thus I realize these things should be approached in practical manner since it’s exactly what professional organization deal with. I’m quite interest in contract management since it’s very related to my previous job description and it shows organization capabilities to manage its internal and external assets. External assets on this context is third party suppliers that organization should think as extension of their internal asset in order to foster creation of competitive advantages.

Nevertheless, I don’t want to limit my understanding only on contract management and hopefully I can gain valuable knowledge from other aspect of facilities management throughout this in module week.

March 28, 2011

Continuous training is not necessary?

Starting to learn thoroughly about transformation leadership for my PMA, and guess what I started to open the bible of the guru of Management, Deming! I just realize, he creates a concept or philosophy that covers almost everything in regards of how leader run his/her organization toward excellence approach. Nevertheless, I curious about one of his point in importance of training that Deming said that, people who accomplished training in particular area and achieve organization expectation, or on the other word above average control limit should not given same type of training. Thus, base on previous experience working in multinational company, leaders instruct HR department to provide refreshment training for their employees in order to maintain their level of performance. Or to give easy illustration, take a football player. We all know that players like Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney are the best in class in current situation. Yet, they must attend every single training session in order to maintain their performance in top form.

So having this situaiton in my mind, it arise one question; why further training in same field or refreshment training is not recommended by Deming?

It’s something I must figure out; hopefully I can find the answer upon accomplishment of the PMA.

March 25, 2011

Complexity of Leadership

Okay, it’s time for Leadership PMA and now I’ve been read several books and journals to help me an idea to answer the PMA. What cross my mind now, there are many numbers of leadership style that can be used to help organization perform better. Thus, as many scholars argue that the main objective of being leader is to inspiring follower in order to improve the performance by maximizing their contribution in voluntary manner becomes the biggest challenge. It because, people in my opinion people are not like to work and as result there is need to provide directive order so they can perform better, you can call me theory x manager/leader if you like. However, after reading many type of leadership, I realize there is need to balance leadership and management since these two approaches are having influence each other.

Being leader that provide enough space for creativity, delegation of power, and open minded can be easily shift to be come laissez-faire type of leadership. Thus, a charismatic leader is also has potential to become pseudo-charismatic that inspire other people to do bad thing and create destructive action. That’s why I do feel, as a leader we should have capability to adjust to become manager and vice versa in order to avoid this problem occurs.

This journey is getting more and more interesting since there is no single leadership is better than other, yet it depends on the situation in the organization. Hopefully I could gain valuable knowledge and experience about leadership in next couple of days.

March 19, 2011

Reflect.. Reflect.. Reflect..

The RDM module is done, now it’s time to reflect what I learned about it. During the module week, our team struggles to solve the problem that has very limited data and various methods available that not sure which one is the suitable to solve the problem. Thus, our team decides to go with decision tree. This method I admit is the best one to solve the problem since consider every option and calculate future value that company might generate. I like this method since it provides comprehensive outcomes based on limited data and perhaps less bias occur if when we were using this tool. On the other hand, when our team using other method such as; paired comparison, grid, and pareto, there are lot of space for bias since it based on our judgment to rank each of parameters. It happened, perhaps, because team members have their own preference and judgment. Thus, at the same time group thinking might occur when one person has strong characteristic and opinion regarding particular thing. This situation is very inconvenience and might drive team decision into misleading. Nevertheless, our group was able to manage this issue by allowing each individual to speak up their mind and sometimes it takes an hour or more to agree on one parameter. Although it sounds, time consuming but I like it since it fosters critical thinking environment, which I believe has substantial impact for the outcomes.

Additionally, I like to talk about assumption. Our module tutor provides freedom to assume any circumstance that you like to use. Yet, what I pleased about my team is they don’t take for granted about this thing since we were trying to think every possibility that might happen in future. Perhaps, it’s good way to solve the problem since in real life assumption might drive misleading and for sure your organization will not any tolerate any decision that only base on assumption. Thus, I believe that’s why in every decision-making we should consider about sensitivity analysis that considers best-case scenario and worst scenario. By having in mind this approach, we will produce robust decision since our recommendation to top management already considered the every single possibility. That’s why I’m so pleased with our decision tree (47 arms!) great job for my team!!

This module is great, I can’t hardly wait to apply this method in real working environment which more and more complexity will affect our decision strategy and of course expectation to produce robust decision that satisfy not only our boss but also our self.

March 18, 2011

After all of stuff, DECIDE!!!

I remember 2 years ago when I was searching for decent SLR Camera as my new hobby and for your information, there are two big players in this industry, which are NIKON and CANON. Thus, during the decision making time I tried to search as many as I could so I won’t regret at the end.

As you might aware, the cost to purchase this gadget is quite high (almost 1,500 pound) so comprehensive consideration needs to be done. I started to look information from magazine, website, forum and online shopping. Yet, I still can’t decide which brand I should choose! Perhaps to give you illustration about SLR Camera world, I quote a friend of mine that said choosing this gadget like choosing religion! There is no right or wrong answer, there is no better and worst option. Both of products are equally good! So after conducted proper research I reach at the edge of my decision time, but I still confused! Thus, some enlightenment arrive, there is one forum that I will always remember and help me solve this problem, it says, “…after you consider thoroughly these two products, DECIDE!! “

This experience perhaps very related to this module during mini project since we can use all available methodologies to help us solve the problem but the most important thing is timing to decide under certain circumstance and satisfy us as decision maker. As Jeff said during the presentation, these decision making tools are not only focus to solve the problem but emphasize to satisfy decision makers so they happy with decision they made.

Btw, in regards to my decision of choosing this camera I go with NIKON and feel very satisfied with my decision! I think that the most important matter…

My Lesson Learned from Mini Project

It was a great week to have group discussion to solve RDM mini project and some lesson learned I would like to share during this period time.

First is about group thinking, it’s inevitable in every decision that involves more than two people in same situation. Thus, this issue might consider as important factor to influence other group members to decide something. As result, if one person has brilliant or critical idea regarding the project, perhaps he/she will changes his/her minds due to group thinking which might affect the output of the process. Nevertheless, since it working in-group give advantages such as brainstorming to foster idea, the potential issue of group thinking should be minimized by allowing every group member to speak up about their own idea and provide constructive counter if the ide from that particular person is not in line with the whole group idea. Second thing I point out from this module is decision to use particular methodology to solve problem might has potential bias since the person who has authority to decide will try to drive result of each method to meet his/her preference. However, the ability to choose proper and correct decision tools will help to minimize the variation. Third, I was learning that during the decision making process, we should approach using “thinking out of the box” approach and challenge the status quo in order to capture every single possibility of parameters that might affect final output.

Moreover, by having these lessons learned in mind, I believe could enhance the ability to improve the quality of decision-making in my future life by deciding which approach should use (i.e. System 1 or system 2). Nevertheless, there are a lot areas of improvement that I fell need to enhance to have robust decision.

Decision for Decision

Doing the mini project in RDM exercise is provide so many interesting experiences and I feel this application of system 2 thinking is very useful for me to create flawless decision in my future life. I think, if I’ve done this module or at least have proper knowledge regarding decision making technique before I will have different life compare to now. I think, there are so many decision I’ve made in the past rely only on my instinct and my preference without considering any probability that affect if I chose particular decision or if I were using system 2, it’s very limited and not comprehensive enough! Perhaps, if could recalled my memory a year ago when I have to decide which University in the UK in regards to continue my master degree, I was using system 2 but not in very details manner. I was trying to decide by comparing more than 4 universities using ranking that at the time I realize there are so many difference approaches and parameters use to evaluate those universities. Thus, I believe this was the bias comes from. Nevertheless, by having more than 3-4 website I believe I could minimize this variation.

On top of that, I quite happy following my decision to choose this University since I can learn something different from others, here I learn who to learn. It’s something that I’m looking for, something that can enhance my knowledge and change the way I’m thinking. Hopefully I can use this experience at the time I back to my homeland. 

March 17, 2011

Bias Bias and Bias

One thing for sure after learning throughout last week in RDM module is, we can’t not avoid bias. It’s inevitable in every decision-making, however what we can do is to minimize it by having supportive decision making tools in order to have robustness decisions. During the mini project, our team tries to solve the problem by employing more than two decision-making tools in order to minimize this bias. Yet, it’s not quite an easy job to do since every single member has their own point of view and preferences. Thus, most of the time we were debating on our different point of view.

It also reminds me when I worked as a strategic buyer in purchasing department. In my daily routine I always dealt with so many bias since when I procure goods or services my users sometimes has their own preference on particular products they want to purchase. Thus, it becomes more and more complicate for me since one side I want to satisfy my user by delivering requirements they wanted at on time manner, nevertheless in many cases their preferences are not make sense in term of commercial aspect point of view so I need to reject their request.

I realize, bias is everywhere and mostly related to people opinion and preference when deciding something from small event to most important thing. Moreover, by employing more than two decision making techniques it will reduce the variation cause and confirm whether our decision is inline from one tool to another.

March 07, 2011

Human Decision Making

Speaking about today’s lecture about judgment, it reminds me about how I usually use my system 1 instead system 2 for any kind of decision making, even for the complex one. Thus, I realize from today’s lecture that human judgment that base on visualization, instinct, or past experience is not sufficient enough to make robust decision that unchallengeable in future. As consequence, many decisions that I made in the past, which relied on system 1 result disappointment in the future.

As human being, we deal with so many kind of decision that starts from the easiest to the hardest and complex one. Thus, I believe each of these decisions should be managed in different manner in order to give flawless output that meet with our expectation and eventually we don’t regret in the future. So, I hope by having this module I can enhance my capability in decision making that applicable not only in professional life but also in daily life.

“For every complex problem there is a simple solution that is wrong” - G.B. Shaw (1856-1950)

March 2011

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