WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 944 [post_author] => 4 [post_date] => 2013-03-22 13:59:52 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-22 13:59:52 [post_content] => Expanding the outreach of Subir Chowdhury's global call for quality throughout society - at all levels - a Fellowship on Quality and Economics has been established at Harvard University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The goal: to explore the impact of quality and economics in the United States. Each year, the “Subir Chowdhury Fellow” will be entrusted with the task of examining the impact of “people and process” and quality on the economic advancement of the United States. This is a graduate Fellowship for doctoral students and will be awarded annually. Applications for the fellowship is open to for any scholar, regardless of ethnicity or national origin, who wishes to spend time at Harvard studying “Quality and Economics” in preparation for their doctoral thesis on this topic. The first Subir Chowdhury Fellowship will be selected for the 2013-2014 academic year.
WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 175 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2013-03-01 21:04:20 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-03-01 21:04:20 [post_content] => Change is everywhere. In nature, change is an undeniable force. Even mountains succumb to the ever present, never diminishing force of change. Why in business should we expect any different? The fact is, change is hardwired into human nature. Individuals and society as a whole enjoy change – like the changing seasons. And there are other changes – changes in taste, changes in lifestyle, changes in expectations and aspirations. Therefore, any effort to push away change and hold on to the present—to maintain the status quo indefinitely—is a waste of energy and resources, and ultimately leads to failure. This is why companies that do not adapt to new trends and ideas will eventually see their markets dry up and wither away. This is the fate of organizations, large and small; from large multi-national corporations to mom-and-pop shops down the street. [pullquote]We must embrace change as though our future depends upon it.[/pullquote] And let’s be clear. When I say “change” what I mean is “future.” In business, change is opportunity. Therefore, we must embrace change as though our future depends upon it. Among forward-thinking and successful companies that I have examined, change in the marketplace is no more difficult, no more traumatic than changes in the season. And how does that happen? Because they have adopted change into their management process:
These are the lessons that the top executives at a particle board manufacturer learned one year. They received several complaints that desks and tables made from its boards were breaking under heavy loads. When the complaints grew in number and urgency, the vice-president of the company – who also led the production unit – took his managers along on a fact-finding mission. Their original goal was to gather as much data as possible from furniture builders and customers and to solve what they believed to be an easily solved manufacturing problem. Their first stop was a furniture builder and their largest customer. There they learned that people do not just write on their desks, they sit on them and place heavy objects on them. The president of a furniture company gave them a demonstration. The management team watched in horror as their client leaned on the edge of a newly completed conference table and the corner cracked and broke away. The team saw numerous other failures; more than they ever imagined; and returned to their offices charged with a sense of urgency. Their first realization was that they never fully understood how their boards were being used. Their product was not flexible – both literally and figuratively. This was no longer a small problem; it threatened their position in the marketplace. That’s when the fault discovery process became an innovation process. They analyzed the strength of the boards in different situations and began a detailed research on the manufacturing process itself. Their goal was not to fix what they had but to make their product stronger than ever before. They tested composites, glues, wood chip sizes, and pressurization techniques. After about a year of work, they optimized their entire manufacturing process. Not only did they improve board strength, they also decreased manufacturing cost. They ended up with a stronger product that was a higher quality and priced competitively. Dealing with the rapid-fire changes in the marketplace requires that businesses possess a built-in survival process that allows them to be innovative and operationally flexible. Changes happen. If you are not prepared, you will meet a future – but it may not be the one that you expected. [post_title] => Meet Your Future [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => meet-future [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-04-16 11:28:36 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-04-16 11:28:36 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://subirchowdhury.com/?p=175 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [format_content] => )
- They have built flexibility into the organization. They possess a culture and mindset that can easily adapt to marketplace demand.
- They actively look for ways to improve products and services. Since the shelf life of goods and ideas is so short, they always live in the future.
WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 373 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2013-02-10 02:01:25 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-02-10 02:01:25 [post_content] => Modern economies depend heavily upon the distribution high quality education to members of our society. Without high-quality structured learning programs, not only are companies left without viable candidates to fill skilled jobs, society is often required to take care of the 'drop outs' one way or another. The tragedy is that had these kids found something they liked about education, they might have stayed in school. They might have gone on to lead productive lives and avoided the blemish of a criminal record. But for many of them, education reminds them of past failure. Without guidance and mentorship, that's a very difficult (if not impossible) barrier to ask school-age kids to overcome on their own. So I ask, who failed whom? In 2007, I received a letter from the Orange County Corrections Department in Orlando, Florida that still amazes me. The letter described how Warren Kenner, a facilitator for a "youthful offender program," introduced my book, "The Ice Cream Maker" as part of the curriculum for an eight-week literature study class for about a dozen students. If you have read this book, you know that it addresses concepts of deploying quality in a business operation. Mr Kenner saw another application of the concept; to offer it to his student as a model for injecting quality into their lives. He wrote, "If you want to get ahead in life, then you've got to treat everyone with respect; not just the people you like. Most important, you've got to be thinking daily on how to improve yourself in service to others." He also said that many of his students have been told all their short lives that they are losers; that they would never achieve anything in their lives. After a while, you begin to believe it. Most of them have such a low opinion of themselves that they lack the basic attributes of ambition and hope that you and I take for granted. His goal is to keep the kids from internalizing the negative voices and reach out for excellence. "My whole thrust is to have them commit to themselves. The have to believe in themselves before they can help themselves or anybody else." In Ice Cream Maker, one of the primary motivators for the fictitious business owner was recognizing the price of failure. For some of the students in this class, it was the first time that they had ever finished reading a book, yet remarkably, many came away from the experience recognizing the price of their own failure and fully comprehending that failure isn't final; that once you shed negative feelings about failure, you can begin working for total quality mindset in everything that you do. Imagine what we might accomplish if more people understood this very simple concept. If these kids get it, why can't the rest of us? [post_title] => Impact of Quality of Learning [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] => impact-of-quality-of-learning [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2013-03-21 13:23:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2013-03-21 13:23:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://subirchowdhury.com/?p=373 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [format_content] => )