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Building the Muscles of Your Workforce

Running improvement projects in a wide variety of service organisations over the last couple of years, I had to relearn what I thought I had a good grasp of already. I had to restudy the basic drivers of productivity and process efficiency. Yes, it is certainly possible to drive productivity by process changes.

Beware the Hawthorne

“We have great news for you. Our project is delivering results already.” The team is all smiles when they give this update. The carefully prepared graphs unveil a remarkably shorter time for the whole process, from customer request to delivery of results. However, we had not changed a thing yet. How come?

Is Group Coaching Possible?

Coaching is about believing in someone and then taking action to help that person to be his or her very best. Some months ago, the managing director of an MNC approached me to develop a team of four operations managers with some people and management skills. Three of them were promoted recently but have not […]

Great, We Have Improved … or Not?

Many companies spend considerable amounts of money on customer surveys every year. Customer survey results are being used to amend strategies, design new products and services, focus improvement activities and … to celebrate success. Since the impact of customer service results can be quite hefty the data driving important decisions shall be trust-worthy. And, the […]

Do You Know About Your Moment of Truth?

The Moment of Truth is the short timeframe when a customer experiences the product or service that many people have often prepared over many months. It is the moment when a small, often unintentional mishap has the huge potential to spoil the result of hard work by others in the organisation behind the scenes.

Continuously Innovating Highly Effective Processes

Just some weeks ago, I filed my tax in Singapore. It took me about twelve minutes at my computer at home on a Sunday afternoon in April. It was not straight forward, I needed to make some amendments and additional inputs to what IRAS had already prepared for me. Yet, it was really easy to […]

Making Sense of Chi-Squared Test – Finding Differences in Proportions

The Chi-Squared test is used to check whether there is a significant difference between observed frequencies (discrete data) and expected frequencies for two or more groups (discrete data). For small sample sizes, Fisher’s Exact test is to be used instead. Both test are performed in a similar way. See for yourself.

Making Sense of Test For Equal Variances

Three teams compete in our CHL business simulation. After completing Day One, it looks like the teams show a very different performance. Although the means look very similar, the variation is strikingly different. To test this assumption of different variation among the teams, the Test for Equal Variances is deployed.

Manager as Coach

To be a good coach is hard work. Coaching requires a set of skills that need to be built. The journey as a coach is a long but rewarding one. How will we know when we have arrived? “With the best of leaders, when the work is done, the project is completed, the people all say, ‘We did it ourselves.’” Lao Tzu

Making Sense of the Two-Proportions Test

Consider a production process that produced 10,000 widgets in January and experienced a total of 112 rejected widgets after a quality control inspection. A project was deployed to fix this problem. In April, the process produced 8,000 widgets and experienced a total of 63 rejects. Did the process really improve? Read..