WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 132 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2013-02-09 19:54:36 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-09 19:54:36 [post_content] => A few years ago, a colleague of mine was driving his car and hit a big pothole in the road. He stopped the car to make sure everything was okay. The car was fine, but at some point, he must have dropped his wallet, because when he got home he couldn’t find it. Sure, he had some money and credit cards in there, but he said that he also had some pictures of his family, and was devastated to think that he’d never get them back. A few weeks went by and out of the blue he got a phone call from a woman he didn’t know. She said she had found his wallet. When he went to pick it up, the woman said she just saw it on the side of the road and knew that someone would want it back. Everything was still in the wallet, just as he had left it. A few months after this incident, he happened to read an article in the newspaper and it turned out that the woman who found his wallet ran a shelter for the homeless. So every year, on the anniversary of losing his wallet, he makes an anonymous donation to her shelter. It’s a simple thank you, and a reminder that there are people in this world who do the right thing. It’s not the facts of the action that makes this a demonstration of Quality. It’s the “mindset” that this woman possessed that makes it an example of what is possible. This is what impresses everybody so much. Because, what did she do? She rose above the norm. And when people make these extraordinary efforts, they make the rest of us sit up and take notice. [pullquote]Whatever your station in life, rich, poor; if you are the CEO or the janitor, it doesn’t matter because the same principles of Quality still apply.[/pullquote] Now I will never forget what this woman did for my friend. It is burned into my consciousness. Wouldn’t you like to have employees who will go that extra mile with you, rise above the norm and make that kind of impact on your business? Having a “quality mindset” - being honest, having integrity and resisting compromise at all costs I believe, is the basis for starting, fostering and ensuring long-term success both individually and collectively. Whatever your station in life, rich, poor; if you are the CEO or the janitor, it doesn’t matter because the same principles of Quality still apply. We all have customers who tell us their needs, wants, and desires. We must strive to not only meet, but constantly exceed their expectations. My “Quality is Everyone’s Business” (QIEB) philosophy –allows everyone to understand why having that “quality mindset” becomes the guiding force that allows them to change up their “game” and perform at higher levels than before. When we make Quality a lifestyle choice – we make it the ultimate choice. When our workforce upholds the Quality Mindset, they have chosen to dedicate themselves to Quality like the woman in this story, and that’s when they will begin to make high-level decisions that will never fail to make positive and lasting impressions. [post_title] => Making Quality a Lifestyle Choice [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => making-quality-a-lifestyle-choice [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-17 13:29:45 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-17 13:29:45 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://subirchowdhury.com/?p=132 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )
WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 386 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2013-04-29 03:32:12 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-04-29 03:32:12 [post_content] => Over the last 50 plus years, Toyota has led the automotive industry in quality and cost. As a result, the company rose to become the world's largest automotive manufacturing corporation and Japan's largest corporation with revenues of $230 billion in 2009. However, this once untarnished icon of Japan's status as an economic powerhouse, is now in decline and the impact on the company and the entire country is tangible. As Dr. Masatomo Tanaka says, a professor at the Institute of Technologists, a university that specializes in training engineers, "If Toyota is not healthy, then Japan is not healthy." As goes Toyota, so goes Japan. Toyota has long enjoyed near hallowed status in Japan as the greatest practitioner of "monozukuri," a centuries-old ideal of perfection in craftsmanship central to ancient pottery and sword-making. The pride of craftsmanship, burned into Japanese culture as the apex of accomplishment, was turned loose on the factory floor and was once the secret to Japan's postwar "miracle." Then something changed. Yes, the earthquake and tsunami last year was a serious blow to Japanese manufacturing, but the decline at Toyota was evident long before the natural disaster. About the time the company achieved its global dominance, rumors began to filter out that management was cutting corners on quality – fewer personnel on the factory floor, lower quality raw materials and suppliers, reductions in research and development. [pullquote]Shaving a few dollars off the cost of each car has resulted in billions of dollars in recall costs, not to mention the billions of dollars in legal costs the company has incurred from lawsuits filed by customers and government regulators – and in a few cases, possible loss of life.[/pullquote] The result has been devastating. Shaving a few dollars off the cost of each car has resulted in billions of dollars in recall costs, not to mention the billions of dollars in legal costs the company has incurred from lawsuits filed by customers and government regulators – and in a few cases, possible loss of life. The damage has also been broadly felt: dealerships have lost sales, negatively impacting local economies, and for a time Toyota’s global position fell. But Toyota’s once unblemished record of quality is now questioned in the media and among many customers. To compound matters, as Toyota moved away from quality, some of its competitors have moved in. Some have embraced their previous methods to the extent that their products are now surpassing Toyota. Korea's Hyundia-Kia is rapidly gaining on once dominant giant and Detroit's big three have partially adopted Toyota's engineering and manufacturing methodologies and improved their quality as well. Toyota had the quality mindset before it become the largest corporation in Japan and the largest automotive company in the world. The company’s actions proved that quality can be the principle driver of efficiency and profitability, but also market dominance. Now the company is learning a new lesson about what happens to giants when they cut corners too often. [post_title] => Cutting Corners [post_excerpt] => Is it culture, the weather, geography? Perhaps ignorance of what the right policies are? Simply, no. None of these factors is either definitive or destiny. Otherwise, how to explain why Botswana has become one of the fastest growing countries in the world, while other African nations, such as Zimbabwe, the Congo, and Sierra Leone, are mired in poverty and violence? [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => cutting-corners [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-05-16 22:34:48 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-05-16 22:34:48 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://subirchowdhury.com/?p=386 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )
WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 145 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2013-03-30 08:04:25 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-30 08:04:25 [post_content] => For years now, I have been observing excellent organizations just to see what makes their operations rise above the rest. What I discovered is not so groundbreaking because, at the end of the day, it is as practical as it is common sense. Before I make the full reveal, I must point out that my entire career has been focused on development of management tools that companies and organizations use to produce substantial and sustainable change to their management process and to the general quality of every aspect of the organization. Sometimes, that effort involves highly technical statistical models. Sometimes they deploy very detailed programs that require extensive training. In most instances where the effort to change is sustained, substantial change in terms of quality output and the resilience of the organization is evident. But sometimes they don’t. The cases where improvement was not sustained, I examined the process more closely. I compared the organizations that had long-term improvement and those that did not. In both cases, there was continual training. In both cases, management was engaged and dedicated to the improvement goals. Then I found an important point where the comparisons ended. [kicker pos="right" size="30"]The underlying strength of “people power” is the fact that it relies on basic human skills.[/kicker] Among organizations that did in fact revolutionize their quality process, was their only focus the process itself? No. Organizations that produced sustainable improvement added another layer to their activity – something so vital that once you see it, it is impossible to ignore. In the organizations that revolutionized their quality process, they also revolutionized their approach among all their people. There was full engagement throughout these organizations on every aspect of their quality message. And everybody was involved – from the executive suite to every last worker. People were encouraged to participate in conversation, to interact with each other about the particulars of the organizational mission and operation, and rewarded when they implemented changes that were productive. The people of the organization were mobilized. That is when I reached the conclusion that the reach of “process power” is limited. Without the “people power” to back it up, the quality process can only go so far. After all, we are highly social creatures that love to communicate. We thrive on our interactions with each other. And more important, we grow when we implement what we gain from each other. It was clear to me that among these excellent and successful organizations, there was a focused effort to encourage communication, interaction, and implementation – basic human skill that are intrinsic to every individual. It is within this framework that I developed LEO – Listen, Enrich, and Optimize – which has proven to be a flexible and transformative program that draws attention on the strengths of human interaction. The underlying strength of “people power” is the fact that it relies on basic human skills. Encouraged and utilized systematically, these skills may also serve as the triggering mechanism that can cause every member in the organization to think deeply about the decisions they make and the actions they take. [post_title] => The Quality Process Revolution [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-quality-process-revolution [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-16 12:11:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-16 12:11:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://subirchowdhury.com/?p=145 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )
WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 703 [post_author] => 4 [post_date] => 2013-01-05 23:05:03 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-01-05 23:05:03 [post_content] => In 2010, the Society of Automotive Engineers along with the Subir and Malini Chowdhury Foundation, established The Subir Chowdhury Medal of Quality Leadership. This award is designed to honor those in the mobility industry who demonstrate ability and talent to further innovation and broaden the impact of "quality" in mobility engineering, design and manufacture. This award is offered in the spirit of my lifetime of work toward quality in the engineering professions.
|James D. Power||2010||JD Power And Associates|
|Glen A. Barton||2011||Caterpillar Inc|