All entries for November 2015
November 29, 2015
From zero to one. From good to great. Being good is not good enough with the competitive envrionment as of today. Everything we went through is changing and everything we will be anticipating is about to change. To anticipate the change, we shall equip ourselves with abilities to change, most importantly with a mentality to embrace the change. In an organizational level, it can be translated into devising most approporiate strategic and tactical plans and having an intimate understanding of human, because plans alone do not capture value and value can only be realized through people - employees who are obligaged for working and comtributing to the changed environment.
I. sometimes, think that creating an organizaitonal culture or bringing change to an organization is way too far from where i am standing right now, however be prepared for future is a necessity and be in a better position to execute the strategic plans for change is what we should prepare us for. It suddently reminds me of the concepts Paul has brought us - time management, mindmapping and even writing reflective blogs etcs, these are all about breaking the habits, which is about change in a personal level. Pushing ourselves get out of our comfort zone can start from really small, same logic for change in an organization. Exercising for me is definitely a change and yes the resistance exists and I translated it into lazyness. Losing weight was my motivation and I was highly motivated, but after two months of execising I realized it has brought me so much other benefits other than the weight I lost, the sense of achievement especially motivates me to go further and sustain better. Sense of achievement and recognition are the elements organization should never miss out, people are the ones to execute whatever plans and intrinsic motivation is the only methods to keep people working at their most capacity.
CBE and PIUSS
Making paper helicopter and assemabling planes in Graeme's class were loads of fun and made me feel like little Joney again, learning unconsiously through playing. This kind of teaching style stimulates not only my interest in learning, but creativity and critical thinking too. Creativity generates ideas, scientific methods help to make decisions, using Deming's PDCA cycle to experiment the ideas. Everything we learn so far begins to create interlinks and connections.
Creating Business Excellence course is like a helicopter taking us fly above an boundless forest and enabling us to have a holistic view of the forest. When the course ended, helicopter landed. We are entering into the forest itselft and getting to take a closer look of what various trees look like and how they grow. Business excellence is conceptual and as indicated in EFQM model, the organization can only achieve excellence with integrated application of all the enablers. Six sigma shall be used as a tool in every part of enablers for improvement and evert part of results for assesment if applied properly, in order to achieve organizational execellence as a whole.
November 20, 2015
improving process is like a journey of losing weight
Six sigma has been launched all over the world and been witnessed overwhelming success like Motorola, General Electric, Honeywell, American Express. Therefore many companies started to embrace six sigma as a process improvement tool aiming to reduce production defects, and remove unnecessary process with an ultimate goal of saving cost.However, if company only want to reduce cost efficiency by adopting six sigma, it will definitely fall hard because it will become harder to explain ROI when reducing cost to the point that they become insignificant when the project itself is more costly than returns.
Using as a quality control system and aiming to improve process as primary objective might end better. But there still are company fail to yield the desired results. Why? They typitally kicked off well with ambitions, and the motivation from the successful living examples and inspring stories will keep them excited, progress well and generate results, but after a while, participants gradually lose motivation because the statistical nature of six sigma is really difficult for regular businessmen to understand and adopt, espectially when the external experts are no longer actively involved. What comes worse is that they will go back to the same old habits as before when experts are long gone.
For those having a weight problem, the cycle just sounds too familiar. Try and fail cycle is what i have been experiencing for a few year. I might have succeeded at some stages but it will always bounce back after a while becuase I fail to incorporate healthy lifestyle into my life and looked only for short-term gain with fatburn pills and starving myself to death.
Sixsigma is the "healthy lifestyle" in an organization that needs to be adopted in all aspects (quality, process, people, learning) throughout the organizaitonal life for a lasting impact, and only by incorporating this the organization will then be on the way to excellence.
November 13, 2015
What kills creativity?
Most people believe in and appreciate the value of new ideas, but why creativity still get killed instead of get supported in the business context? Is it because of management style or we've just been so busy with maximising profit and chasing for sales?
Creativity is always associated with an artistic veiw, and most businessmen, especially those coming from finance and accounting background, address that creativity is the one thing not necessory in their world. Reasons for me not working in financial environment even though coming from finance and actuarial science background are basically not fancy for always being afraid of making mistakes that might cause clients lose huge amount of money and everyone is either blaming with each other or extreme stressed. So it is actually the working environment of which i can smell the tense in the air holds me back. Positive working environment is the incubator for creativity, so i suppose this enviroment kills creatativy. However, critical and creative thinking is the life skill. We may not need to always come out original ideas, but we should have skill of puting ideas together in a new combination to deliver new solutions.
If creativity is killed by business nature and needed in life, what should we do?
November 01, 2015
Life skills and Knowledge
Carried with life skills so that we will not drown easily in the flood of life jouney is the one thing Paul kept mentioning and trying to equip us with. One student in our course had raised the objection of teaching method and learning environment, then our mini group discussed this issue with completely understanding of his feelings especially when one is not getting what he wished for and paid for. We admired his courage of bringing the thought up during the class particularly when he has been a very quiet person throughout the month. He fancy for something informative, something deep and something practical, and believe me, we all do.
I am not trying to compare the importance level between life skills and knowledge, because I think they are both of great signficance. Deming also said,"There is no substitute for knowledge". While, I think rather than being two seperate identities there is a strong link between both where life skills will lead us to the sea of knowledge, however deep and intensive. Looking back what life skills we have learnt this month, I suppose the skills of time managment, stress management, independant learning skills, leadership and communication, using mindmapping form a window that will lead us to the world knowledge. We might feel the knowledge is still too far to touch or apply because the window is yet open, but it will eventually be with more modules touching on and more sophisticated in terms of mastering the life skills.
Life skills are not something you will feel extraordinarily competent or trilled when mastering or feel inevitably awful or full of remorse when them slipping away from your memory inconspicuously, but knowledge acquired without applying life skills is. Life skills come on unexpectedly and go beyond really, and it will not disappear when embeded in one's habbit. Hope you would get what you have paid for at the end of the course and I believe you will.
What does JOB mean to you?
Can you recall the last time putting your brain in the locker before going for work? I am sure people sometimes still do that no matter willingly or unwillingly. It truly depends on what the job means to you, whether it is for pay-and-go, sense of life security, respect and recognition, or self-fulfillment. Before criticizing our bosses for not creating a meaningful working environment, shall we run a self-assesment and look into our attitude first?
Paul enlightened me on his perception of job:
1. paid to do what it is in job description
2. paid to improve what the job is
3. paid to spread good practice
If on the first stage, one deserves 50% of the amount currently getting and should feel lucky of the double payment. But who have ever thought this way before? The dark side of human nature leads people to feel like never getting enough until reaching the limit of money no longer being the motivation and starting to feel bored and then redirecting the attention to any other activities except for work. If we, as normal human beings, can look at the world with a different mindset or try to put ourselves in the shoes of bosses', positive attitude will finally lead us somewhere, starting from influencing colleagues around with positive mind and creating a positive working environment as a virtous cycle.
Life is too short to wait for a great leader offering directions. We shall embark on the journey of making the work enviroment a better place to contribute and gradually making the world a better place to live.