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April 24, 2009

IBM

IBM'S knowledge management  approach and strategy focuses on four elements whose intergration are key to creating and sustaining a knowledge based business : expertise, content, collaboration and learning. In addition it focuses on how these elements are leveraged by different social system. Expertise involves the ability to find and work with the subject matter experts across the business and then leverage their knowledge and experience. Content management is the ability to access pertinent information immediately and easily. Collaboration refers to the ability for two people to work together through time and space. Learning or e learning is the ability to receive just in time mentoring and education to develop a career and job related skill set.

This according to me is basic knowledge managements and descripes it well in a nut shell thats why I wrote about it. First expert knowledge should be recorded so it can be used for future reference. It saves time and moneyof calling experts again. But it is important in what manner you record it. It should be easily accessible for the one looking for it. The database key word search for example is a good way of finding things instead of reading 100 pages of information which is not useful at that point of time. Working in team always helps as people more people bring more knowledge to the table.They can find info faster with two people looking for it.


Recession– Ford– Knowledge Management and Maintenance

In 1980 there was a recession and Ford reliased the importance of sharing information. It created teams. These teams were employees from different plants who came together and spend days in different factories. They realised that not all effective policies/methods were followed in all factories. So they ensured that all effective method were followed


Mr Excellence who has expnded can do the same. This ford example can show him the importance of KM especially in this time of recession where one needs to be cost effective.


April 04, 2009

Artificial Intelligence

while reading more into knowledge management, I came across this interesting tool called artificial intelligence. Now a days taks are getting more complex. Artificial intelligence can come in handy out here. This system is a machine that can do things like humans. It also good at collecting knowledge and using previous knowledge it can come up with a solution. It can help no expert operate machines they barely know anything about. They are designed to make an humans task more easier. Use of robots comes under artificial intelligence as well. It is a very interesting tool.

Computer has definately made the world a more easier place to live in now a days. Implementation of artificail intelligence can really help in many ways and has been implemented by many companies such as texas instrument and cambell soup


April 02, 2009

Should messengers be allowed at work places?

As I said in my previous blog that chat rooms are a good way of exchanging and sharing information. It is very cheap in terms of cost. Now some of these messengers have call facilities as well which makes communication inexpensive. But how do we ensure that employees do not take wrong advantage of this. The might start talking to their friends and company may suffer due to this. Should chatroom talk be monitored in the company?


Blogging is a Tacit way of Sharing Knowledge…....

Tacit means informal..............I just realised that blogging is a good way of sharing knowledge.....it has helped me so much to gain more information and probably help others by sharing information. I am not sure if any companies implement blogging in their organisation but I think it is a good way to share information throughtout the organisation. Discussion form an important part for knowledge to grow. Exchange of information helps existing knowledge grow.

Another thing I was thinking was that its interesting that sometimes we have the information right in fron of us but do not make use of it.....things such as manuals of the organisations may exist but people do not bother looking into it. It may have the information you may need while meeting a client. You dont want to appear clueless in front tof the customer. Your organisational structure should be such that people read manuals, databases, BLOG ASWELL :)


March 29, 2009

RDD comes to an end

It was a very emotional day for me. I had mixed feeling.

It could be possible that I may not see some of my classmates again. This made me really upset. We got along so well like a family. I am going to miss each and every classmate.

I was happy because I now get a months break from the 9 to 5 classes but I really hope I do not procastinate.

I will miss Paul too. He has helped me further develop not only my learning skills but also develop my personality.


In RDD I really liked the fault tree analysis. The use of "And" and "Or" gates is really interesting. I do feel that fault tree analysis can get quite complicated sometimes. I felt so while working on the presentation.  I do feel its not a full proof way of getting all your problems solved. I thought benchmarking is imporant as you can always learn from other peoples success and failures




Knowledge Management—High turnover rate

As well all know by now that knowledge management is linked to intellectual capital. Intellectual capital not only encompases the empolyees knowledge but also the customers and vendors knowledge. It also includes things in the organisation when the employees go home such as databases, manuals, software and customer file.

I always used to wonder that if employee turnover is high then thats a lot of experience and information walking out of the door. But KM  makes it possible for us not to worry about that. If your company is organised in a way where there is exchange of knowledge and information easily available and recorded it is so much more easier. Each time something goes wrong we can record it in the database and also record how we solved the problem. So this will help us not worry about high turnover rate. But this doesnt mean that you should be happy with high turnover rate. Work to reduce it. High turn over rate means loss of time and money. Time and money taken to hire and train some one new is very expensive!!


March 15, 2009

Cell Manufacturing

I found the concept of working in small batches very interesting. I f one makes different types of products too, it important to alternate between the two products than just making product A in the morning and product B in the evening. This is called product levelling. It also involves producing goods at a fixed speed. There is standardization then. Its not the one day you produce more and the other day you produce less. By working in small batches one can detect defects more easily and reduce the lead time and changeover time. The WIP inventory is reduced.


Time Management

Well in our presentation we ran out of time and could not complete it. Well most of our team members were quite dissapointed, as this was the last presentation we would have and we all had worked very very hard on it. In the assesment we got from  team 1 was that we had good content in it. I tried to evaluate where we had gone wrong. Why did we not finish. May be because we spent too much time explaining definitions.

I have definately learnt how to be more careful and manage time more effectively by prioritizing whats more important. I think I came out a winner from this presentation and not a loser. I have learnt so much during the course of this presentation. We all discussed what we were talking about in the presentation, gave our inputs to each other. The team worked very efficiently. The portfolio was a good way to reflect on the ideas in the presentation.

It was very nice for a lot of class mates to say that they felt bad that we could not complete the presentation. This shows cooperation and unity and not competition. I think all groups did a really good job and as Paul said in class, that we all have come a long way from presentations we gave in CBE about 4 months back i think.


Lean and Six Sigma

I just turned in the pma a couple of hours back. It sure has been very interesting. It was interesting to see how lean and six sigma can be used together. Both have similar goals of minimizing defects, and are quite similar in many other ways.  One of the only difference I found was the lean also emphasises on compressing the process to reduce the lead time, which probably six sigma doesnt really work on. Both also use stastistical tools to solve problems and have a cylewhich helps them solve problem. What I found interesting was the use of hoshin kanri in lean. PDCA cycle is a huge part of lean culture which is a part of hoshin kanri too. Honshin kanri can be used in a lean company. The Catch ball method is a good way of brainstorming. Six sigma too talks a lot about brainstroming and having cross functional teams which would help improve the quality of brainstorming. It is very important to have a facilitator in a six sigma team who is a black belt, who will encourage comunication between members and try and create an environment of trust. There are so many other ways how these are similar. Its interesting to see so many companies such as Xerox, Ford adopting lean six sigma.


Health and Safety

During the presentation Billy talked about having the right uniform and job safety accessories such as helmet, gloves and so on. If such things are provided then people are bound to be safer. In India many a times I see that people dod not have the right accessories and get hurt. It is very essential to provide the workers with the right accessories. I know this is a very small blog but I hat to emphasise on the imporatnace of people having the right accessories and every life is important!!

I also wanted to talk about that keeping things such as toilets, kitchens, work place clean would help motivate the workers come to work apart from keeping a disease free environment..... One should try to abide by standards provided according to me. ....


Maintenance

In maintenance while researching, I thought having a maintenance technical library was a really good idea. You can store all your previous problems and solutions in it. So next time if something similar happens you have something to refer to. It will save so much time and cost of trying out something new. I thought benchmarking maintenace to the previous years maintenance cost is a really good idea too. Hopefully the trend should be downwards after applying different sort of maintenance like preventive, predictive or TPM.According to me preventive is based on Murphy's law which states that if anything can go wrong it will. Therefore take all the precaution. See that all the bolts in the machine are tight, the environment is clean, everything is in place

One of the groups talked about lean. I think its a good idea to stop te line wen you see a defect. Instead of of having a lot of rework which will increase cost, one can save a lot of money. This will definately help me to imporve the quality for the place I will work. Interesting idea.


March 13, 2009

Security and Facility Management

I think its important to have a facility which encourages communication. Having cubicles for workers would reduce interaction but eliminating the those walls would help a great deal. People working together would create a bond with more interaction. This will make the flow of  exachange of ideas and information easier. Having a social room could help. Some work places do have a social room life a cafeteria or a television room or a gym. Having a gym would promote a healthy lifestyle too among the workers

Having CCTV is important as one it would create a safer enviornment. Though personally I do not like the idea of having CCTV as I dont like to be watched all the time. The feeling of some one may be monitoring you is weird. Its like living in the Big Brother House. Also I would feel the company does not trust me. But for the greater good its important to have cctv to avoid any sort of theft. For information safety there should be some sort of software which prevents hackers from using your trade secrets and also  have password proteced documents so only the intended people can see the document.


Presentation

Today there were presentations in class. Everyone did a really good job. We all have come a long way. There was something new and unique in every presentation that took place. I really liked the idea of Lean IN ASSET MANAGEMENT. I think lean production would really help in maintenance, health and safety and facility management.. It said that it is important to stop production as and when the defect is found. It is one of the things lean teaches. This will save a lot of money in rework. In terms of health and safety, if your product is a boat it is important it is not defective as life of people are involved, so its important to stop the production as and when defect is found. In terms of resouse utilsation, JIT would ensure that there is no over producation and no additional place is needed to store things.

I also liked May's idea that innovation is necessary in exsiting products as well. I mean innovation keeps interest of the customers in existing products and also can increase the life cycle of the product.

In terms of knowledge management, I think its important to store ones mistakes and solution in the database and one can learn from their mistakes and its easily solution is easily availble if the same mistake is made again.



March 09, 2009

Craft Production and Six Sigma and Lean

Apart from mass production and lean production discussed in Louis's blog I came across this production method. Its is a higly flexible production method. It is basically a few skilled people working on a product and custom make it for the customer (For example make the car more decorative). It can be quite expensive and the out put less compared to lean and mass production. My professor in my previous school told me that mass production started in US. It was practised by General Motors. Lean started in Japan and is practised by Toyota. Craft Production originates from Europe. I really like the idea of Craft prodction. In India I do see some traces of Craft Prodution. Its practised by this person D. Chabaria. He customizes a car for the customer. He is highly successful in following craft production. I think  six sigma can be applied to craft production also. Some processes in craft production too might be standarised. In those processes six sigma can be applied. Six six sigma can be applied to mass production too. The DMAIC circle can be applied too. But I think its most effective with Lean.


Team work and Innovation and Recognition

I realised today that rewarding a person for innovating is definately not a good idea. Its is better to recognize the person instead. One of the points mentioned that sometimes for innovating team work is important as people can build on each others ideas. One can recognize each individual for the team work. But rewarding each team member could get very expensive for the company. In this case the company might opt for rewarding the person who innovated the most, who probably would have just build on some one elses idea. This could kill the spirit of team work. The others could also feel left out and feel treated unfairly. They would them probably try to keep their ideas to them selves and not shre as there would be no motivation. It could also lead to competition arising among team members which would ruin the effective communication process which is required in an organisation. Lack of communication is against knowledge management. Therefore recognizing the enitre team is better than just rewarding one person.


Stress and Innovation

Today in class I was talking about how stress and innovation are not the best of friends but at the same time they cannot do without each. I mean some amount of stress is needed. There is good stress and there is bad stress. The good stress is called Eu-stress. If a person is completely stress out then he wont be able to innovate as he/she will be mentally exhausted. Good stress is required as in certain deadlines or time frame. If there is none of it then the person will be completely laid back which might hinder his innovation capabilities as well.

Stress was not even mentioned under our environment posted. I randomly thought of if. Quite Innovative right?? One of the reasons I realised is that Paul has made this module stress free. There is good stress in terms of certain deadlines such as blogging which actually help me become more reflective as well as innovative.

Well I agree with Aykut that innovation is required at all levels. I was under the impression that only marketing and research and development need to be innovative but later as Paul told us that even a production manager can be more innovative. He could also come up with an Idea which could help the product. Say you are the manufacturer of the chocolate company. May be a production manager could come up with innovative ideas of addiing different flavours without changing the process of production.


March 07, 2009

virtual library

Each time I borrow a book on lean six sigma, its aldready on hold by someone esle so I have to return it in 3 days. Thinking about that I realized that in the future we all could have a virtual library we could use so that everyone can have access to all books at anytime. We do not need to use paper and kill trees. It is environmentally friendly as well. Imagine each book available on your computer just a click away. I mean the concept of google book. How we have so many books scaned and available to use in google book result. In terms of asset management, it will be good as no maintenance will be required. You will not have people scribbling on the books, tearing pages or books being lost and needed to be replaced. Customer will be happy as well as they do not have to wait for books. As Paul said earlier "Stakeholer is King, Customer is God". So it is very important to keep the customer happy. So I think the example of a virtual library is a new way of knowledge and asset management. I am not sure if a virtual library aldready exist. It will be less expensive for the library too. Instead of buying many copies of one book, they can just buy one copy and scan it. Since asset management seems to be all about cost saving anywhich ways. Whats say people? do you agree with me??


Customer focus

My research does tell me that six sigma is focued on customer as without making customer happy there is no business. One of the books I read about six sigma mentioned that. Also lean seems to be customer oriented as it focuses on the process getiing faster and reducing the lead time. So both these methods lean and six sigma seem to be focusing on customer. This is one more thing in comon. One thing that is regiestered in my mind is what Paul said in class once : "STAKEHOLDER IS KING, BUT CUSTOMER IS GOD". I think the point reinforces that without customer there is no business, so the focus on customer is very essential!!!


March 04, 2009

Maintenance

Why is Maintenance management so useful?? I thought to myself? I first though so that machines can run efficiently and own town can be reduced. I thought thats about it.How can it help further I thought. Till I came across this fat book on maintenance management. It gave me a lot of benefits. The following it said in my words:


Firstly the cost advantages will show in the long run.

Secondly as I said reduced dowtime will not only ensure on time deliver but also reduce the no of machines we may use, which will reduce customer cost and make him happy

Thirdly if the factory is well maintained and managed then cost can be controlled in the factory. One may not see unforseen expenses

Fourthly Cost benefits will help us fight competition

Fifthly ones physical asset can last for longer time. Proper cleaning techniques and processes will help the asset to run well without the expensive breakdowns.

Sisthly better maintaince can help get a better name from the customer. On time deliveries, clean factories when customer visits will only help make us a sustainable supplier.

Seventhly there will safety for the workers. No health related issues coming up due to work atmosphere. No ones life is at risk.

Eightly it will create a better working environment and motivate people to come to work...


There are a lot of advantages for good maintence .I had not even tought of how customer perception can be changed or about the workers safety which is really important. Motivation for coming to work is important. I would not like to go to a dirty place and work and risk my health. Also if the company assets last for a longer time without breaking down then its always a benefit for the company.