Saturday, December 29, 2007

New Year's Resolution for Management --> CUT COSTS IN 2008--> NOT PEOPLE

Enough already, it is time for Management to start earning their money in 2008 by developing or innovating ways by which to improve the bottom line by cost cutting as opposed to cutting their number one asset --> people.

You hear it almost everyday – a company laying off part of its workforce - to improve profitability or as the last resort to stay in business. Why does it reach that point? Why do leaders resort to this method? Why can’t companies reduce costs without getting rid employees? The answer is they can. But it can’t be in response to short-term thinking or a crisis. It must be hands-on approach. Cost cutting must become an on-going objective that is as important as any other Accounting or Finance effort.

It is so easy and shortsighted to cut employees regardless of what Management will tell you or what you read in magazines and newspapers. So-called leading experts from business colleges do studies and research on the best ways to remove people from the bottom line with little impact on the organization. They are full of crap and when they do instruct they fill the next generation of leaders and managers with the same crap. It has been going on for years, I am a product of that schooling and I’m just lucky I found the teachings of Dr. Deming to help set me straight in 1980.

I have personally been involved and had to make decisions as to how many and what employees should be let go. Each and every time I fought for other ways by providing examples of other companies, ideas and probable solutions other than cut people. The problem with my input was it took too much time according to other decision makers and the charge to get rid of heads was to be done soon, quickly and above all quietly. Do not let employees and the most feared of all “The Press” get wind of what was in store for the company. Again, a bunch of crap, “GUTLESS” is the optimum word for these type of managers and leaders.

It’s a new year so let’s move on …

I’m not going to go in to the traditional Cost of Poor Quality – see my post at

What I propose to do for 2008 is to form a cross-functional team that represents all departments under the “active” leadership of a decision-making Vice President.

The type of cost cutting will be Discretionary and Headcount related (not cutting employees but may involve different jobs, movement, reporting structure, etc…).

Spreadsheets should be developed that list items along with the following categories/columns:

Owner, Category, Idea, Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4, Probability of Achievement (%), Savings Per Month
EOY Savings, Description, Tracking Number, Department Manager, Department Rep Go /NoGo, Data Status (green, yellow, red), Org Dependency, Doability (yes/no).

The following are some of my examples and ideas that if looked at closely can save a company large amount of dollars and not lose efficiency or effectiveness of operations. Some may seem harsh but I’m betting the majority of employees (don’t say NO until you ask them) would rather keep their jobs with some signed assurances and agreements with the leaders of the company.

- Freeze all Salaries (until you no longer have to cut people)
- Renegotiate and cancel consultant agreements (trust me, you have the knowledge inside your company, look for it, use it, trust your people)
- Your employees will always make better company decisions than 99% of business consultants out there. Why – because they care and LISTEN!
- Reduce and Scale Down Company Picnics and Parties
- 2 Week - Month Vacation w/o Pay
- Giving up monthly Reimbursement Perks (i.e., phone cost)
- Use Internet as source for cheaper fares (car, plane, train) and hotels (cancel contract with travel agencies)
- Turn in all unnecessary pagers and cell phones
- Revisit who needs cell phones and update cell phone plans to best provider
- Reduce Travel Per Diem allowance unless dining with customers
- Discontinue company-paid annual dues for professional organizations.
- Give employees the option to work 37 1/2 hour workweeks, which allows a 20% reduction in salary. Work in combination with flexible work arrangements
- Discontinue funding for all Business Resource Groups (including registration for annual conventions, travel fees and annual gala balls
- Remove unused and outdated Telephones and Lines (computer, fax)
- Renegotiate supplier contracts to single-source suppliers
- Remove all copiers (and contracts) and use local printers
- Return all unused equipment to vendors and free up space
- Reengineer Work Stations to save on space (sell or lease free space)
- Carefully look at an effort to move towards virtual office to realize real estate cost savings
- Re-negotiate cost of leased space (if applicable)
- Cut out goofball training by consultants
- Prioritize work place upgrades (i.e., cafeteria, gyms, conference rooms)
- Change Sales Compensation Plan to pay at in-effect with additional incentive for Sales to sell high margin
- Revisit Procure staff guidelines / Processes / Contract. Too many mistakes occurring and nothing can be corrected and we company is paying for the consequences

- Cancel Coffee and Bottled Water Contracts

The above items are just the beginning … Cmon do something good in 2008, don’t punk out and take the easy management way. Please don't contribute to "The Demise of American Management."

So in 2008, "Stop complaining about poor performance of employees, and start worrying about the poor performance of management."

Friday, December 14, 2007

The Holiday Season is a great time for "Creating Customer Loyalty" with KANO Analysis

The holiday season is a great time for attracting and keeping new customers and encouraging their loyalty!
So how should a company create customer loyalty?

Define Quality
Anticipate Needs
Absolute Customer Focus
Voice of the Customer
Delight & Wow
Service Quality
Where every Customer is Treated
Like the First!

Getting Customers: During the Holidays most of your potential new customers come to you! So how do you keep them for the long-term?

Keeping Customers: Creating a mind set for delighting your customers, not just solving their problems, but going beyond to anticipate their current and future “Latent” needs, to WOW them with customer, technical and process services that they didn't even know were possible.

Keeping Customers: Your customers have the dollars and you must continue to figure out new ways on how to get it and keep it coming by giving them no reason to leave.

KANO MODEL - click on diagram to Enlarge

You must not lose sight of the fact that your customers (int/ext) are the most important judges of your quality, not you!


Q - Then why do companies do just the opposite?

A - Greed and Short-Term Thinking.

It’s actually very easy to figure this out, after all companies stock up on seasonal workers (many are customer facing) who have little or no background in customer service and the fact most companies have little or no standard procedures that can be done in a short time frame with long lasting effects.

You get what you pay for and that is workers who just are there for holiday money and could care less how they represent your business (sad but true, sure they don’t intentionally do things to make customers mad, they have no idea on how to make them happy and loyal.)

Another example of “The Demise of American Management”

For more examples on Kano Analysis go to my post @

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

If our educators are so smart then why don’t we go to school all year long?

I have written about this subject a number of times over the past two years. It never gets the attention it needs or the news stories to supplement the ways to improve our educational system. Is it the only solution? Of course not but it is one probable solution to a broken down "Baggy Whip" of a system. Baggy Whip = Antiquated.

Human behavior does not like change, especially if it requires someone to change a lifestyle that is rich in tradition even if it has served long past its worth to society.

If our educators are so smart then why don’t we go to school all year long?

I was once asked a few years back if I could do one thing to improve our educational system in the United States (specifically in Michigan) what would it be?

I would require the school year to be all year long with additional weeks off around Holidays (Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day) that are traditionally in the summer months. Summer classes would be used for outdoor learning when possible in the sciences and vocational studies. Use the summer months for some real hands on learning to support the theories taught during the traditional school year.

This would increase the amount in time in school by approximately two months for a total school year of 10 months.

Education needs to be a life long learning that should take many forms and varieties. Having three months off in succession is a serious disruption in the learning for any type of process known to man.

All you naysayers leave all your counter arguments and tap dancing tickets at the door, you folks who still want eight months of school have had the floor long enough with your band-aide solutions. Move away or be prepared to get pushed of the dancing floor.

Another example of "The Demise of the American School System."

Saturday, November 24, 2007

300 members of the Michigan Wood Carvers make canes to support Veterans - Updated 11/23/07 - Family of Four Generations of Veterans receive Cane


Last August 29th I posted the story below that was sent to me by my cousin Rizal Baysa. Rizal sent me an Email today that is a great Thanksgiving tribute a family of patriots.

Here is the Email,


This Thanksgiving Day my son Jeffery, My Grandson Christian and I gave thanks by presenting Rizal Baysa's cane to WWII Purple Heart, Bronze Star recipient PFC Michael Zulick at his daughter Ann Carrico's house in Clinton Twp. The gathering represented four generations of Veterans (WWII, Vietnam, Persian Gulf, and Iraq). Although not required of her, Ann gave a generous donation to our cane project fund.

God & Country
Lean On Me

PFC Zulick,

In a small way of showing appreciation for your service to our country, the Michigan Woodcarver's Association wants to honor you by presenting you with this cane. No matter what the reason for the injuries you recieved that requires the use of support, be it mental, physical or both, we want you to know that we respect the sacrifices you have made. Please don't compare your injuries with other Patriots and remember "All gave some and some gave all". Hopefully your experiences at Normandy, Central Europe, The Rhineland, and the Battle of the Bulge will be shared with your family and all those you come in contact with that are thinking of serving our country. In these later years as things get a little wobbly please use our cane to lean on. Included on your cane is a decal representing our POW"s & MIA's. Please keep all of them in your prayers, just as we also keep them in ours. May bless you.

Your cane head was carved by: Rizal Baysa

Decals and woodburning by: Harold Joseph

Very Respectfully,

Harold R Joseph

Michael Zulick was a member of the 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment and jumped into Normandy, on D-Day, as a part of the famous 82nd Airborne Division.

Here are some pics of the family who received the cane and fine craftsmanship from Rizal who designed and created the cane.

Please read below for more information on this wonderful group of people.


Carvers' canes support vets
Michiganders' labor of love honors those wounded in Iraq, Afghanistan

This Quality story was sent to me this morning from my cousin Rizal who is part of a group of Michigan Wood Carvers that are making canes for the soldiers wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The effort is spreading across the country so I would urge you to forward this story to Veteran groups in your area so they me be able to participate in this wonderful effort to thank those men & women who are serving their country.

Below is another link on the reason why these Carvers' are doing this project.

Thank You Michigan Wood Carvers!!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Does a low IQ = a low grade? & "Learning is Fun"

I hate labels, once you get one it can never go away especially when it is substantiated with a written document or test result. Within the educational system this starts in the early grades when a student receives an IQ score. A score of 70 is considered borderline Cognitively Impaired (CI). To know more about IQ scores go to

I bring the IQ score up because I was faced with a statement recently that said she has an IQ of 50 there is no way she can have an A- on her report card. Are you doing her work?

The student in question is in special education and is in the 9th grade. She can barely read or write and at best can copy notes when I write them from overheads or PowerPoint presentations.

While taking these notes (I alter them for her understanding and capability) and while she is copying them I explain what it is she is writing about. I do this because when it comes quiz or test time she will recognize key words as opposed to trying to read and answer questions on the test. I usually alter the test by providing a 50/50 chance on multiple choice questions and explaining essay questions in more detail by using an example that takes one of her interests into account rather than the subject presented. Her answer will provide enough information if the concept the teacher is teaching is obtained.

I always check with the teacher first and explain in more detail by writing on the test or verbally explain. A teacher has never once told me that this would be wrong or incorrect.

When we work on projects I have the student provide me information in their terms and interest and then I jot them down usually in a bullet type report. Providing more information would be tainted with my words and understanding which I try to avoid.

So does this mean I'm doing her work? What the hell does an IQ score have to do with an Autistic or CI student anyway? The IQ test and score is one way to test intelligence, but in the Special Education World the test has little validity when it comes to measuring the special or visual intelligence of an AI or CI student. Why, because ...

People would be amazed if they understood the sensory powers of an AI Child.

When I informed the teacher I may be altering the way I teach his student (per my boss) he was upset because he said the girl deserved the grade, she did all her work (participation, notes and worksheets account for many points) and causes no disruptions in the class. He told me I was verbally and visually providing concepts so the student can learn just as the regular students (I hate using that label).

It becomes more confusing to me if I am helping too much when I see the same person and others telling me I’m helping too much when they provide other special education children (That do NOT require a one on one aide) in the same grade with written out vocabulary words, completed art projects and worksheets.

The only difference is the label, my student got an A-. Because there is no way this student could get an A in any subject according to her IQ score. If she had gotten a “C” no question would have raised. Why does an A- cause so much trouble? It is easy because it is a label that parents or others can say "See my child is not stupid," but the bureaucracy says she is so end of story.

The saddest part of this story is that when I explained to my student that I would be changing my method of teaching she became visibly angry and said “ You make learning fun.” She did not care if she got an A- or a “D” nor do I, we just want to have “Joy of Learning” no more no less.

That may be the best compliment I ever received in my educational career. Yes these students are very special and I am humbled by them each day.

We are heading into Thanksgiving break and I am most thankful for the continual learning that takes place each day I am with such special students.

Read my other ASD posts by clicking the ASD label below this post.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Patience My Ass ...

Before I started studying “Systems Thinking “and “Profound Knowledge” I used to react like one of my favorite poster's in the Army (hung over my bunk more than 35 years ago). It was a poster of two skinny Buzzards sitting on a branch with one saying to the other “Patience My Ass I’m Gonna Kill Something.”
Click on Pic to Enlarge

I suppose when your young and in the Army this type thinking was not unusual or maybe it was. Anyway over the last 25 years I have learned that Patience Truly is a Virtue.

I now believe if one is patient and vigilant many doors of opportunity that open and close can be analyzed in a more constructive environment as opposed to the out of control and impatient thinking associated with having little patience. Without patience it won’t matter how many times the doors of opportunity open and close because you won’t see them anyway.

It's funny how that works, when you are young and have the time we are very impatient to get on with our lives. However, as we age we have more patience with not as much time left to do all we want to do in our lives.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Importance of a Management Log

For the past 30 years I have kept a Management Log. I usually started a new one each year. The tools required for entry are a pen, and pencil and spiral notebook (cheap investment for such a large payback).

I call the entries “Liners” because when I wrote them it was usually just a couple of lines with dates, facts, figures, observations and comments from internal and external customers.

I always kept one on myself and for those direct reports that required constructive feedback for evaluations and some immediate request from above on how I see my people or some immediate accomplishments when putting a list together for performance appraisals downsizing and very rarely a bonus.

During the day I always had my spiral notebook in a handy drawer where I could open it quickly and make an entry. If I weren’t at my desk or out of town I would use Sticky Notes, Small Notebooks, Emails and Voice Mails to myself for entry later.

Speaking of Emails - When you receive good comments (bad too) and information you should save and print these emails in both an on-line and hard copy folders. This is a great way to document and best yet it serves as a reminder for someone including yourself when memory becomes an unreliable source of information and is open to debate.

The entries always had the date, subject and person if applicable. At the end of each month I would summarize my entries for each direct report and then by quarterly and then annually. This seems like a timely effort but it is not and it saved many a job from downsizing.

I was always prepared when an Email or phone call came wanting information on my team or one of my direct reports. Responding in a timely manner with dates, quotes, people, data and information put my folks first and foremost.

I also did it for those senseless rating and ranking sessions that are still common today. No one hates them more than me and there have been a number of times where I refused to join in on the party.

For more on Performance Appraisals read my post at

When I did play I was able to present information on my people where my peers could not. Speculative and verbal praise will not match up with objective and meaningful data and observation. I could go back to the first quarter and supply value-added information where others had a tough time remembering last week. This type of data and information is critical for Performance Appraisals.

Question --> Most people I encounter hate Performance Appraisals. When so many people hate the same thing does that not tell you something is wrong? "It inherently is wrong, it just plain stinks."

It is every managers job to support their people first even before themselves.

I still keep logs today for each person and student I work with so that I can learn and provide meaningful measures and objectives. It does not matter what profession you are in when keeping a Log.

P/S – I also keep a log on myself when I was reporting to upper levels because I knew they would not.

It's amazing what costs so little in time and money go such a long way.

Do it for your people, do it for yourself.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

American CEOs & China Product Recalls - Who is at Fault? more recalls (Aqua Dots) ---> I just have one question

Updated 11/08/07 When will the Global Consumers Respond?

U.S. safety officials have recalled about 4.2 million Chinese-made Aqua Dots bead toys that contain a chemical that has caused some children to vomit and become comatose after swallowing them.

Scientists have found the popular toy's coating contains a chemical that, once metabolized, converts into the toxic "date rape" drug GHB.

Doctors say "GHB is this drug that in low doses actually causes euphoria," "In higher doses, it can cause people to go into a coma. It can cause seizures. It can cause something known as hypotonia, where all your muscles just become very flaccid.

Ok, here is my question. If all the toys in the recalls were produced in the Middle East what would we call this activity?

Updated 10/13/07 - Winnie the Pooh! Shame on You!

More than 90,00 Children's products, mostly imported by J.C. Penney Co. were recalled this past week becasue thy contain dangerous levels of LEAD.

The retailer also recalled 19,000 Deluxe Wood Art Sets made in Taiwan and Vietnam, and 2,400 Breyer stirrup ornaments manufactured in China, for the same reason, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said Thursday in separate statements.

About 80 percent of the world's toys are made in China, the biggest exporter of consumer goods.

The CPSC Thursday recalled four other products that may contain excessive levels of lead. CBRL Group Inc. asked consumers to return 7,800 Chinese-made Princess Magnetic Travel Art Set Lap Desks sold in Cracker Barrel Old Country Store locations from April to August.

Kipp Brothers recalled 10,000 Bendable Dinosaur Toys manufactured in China. Riddell Inc. called back 2,500 Chinese- made Collectible ''Jeff Gordon'' Mini Helmets, based on the one worn by race car driver Jeff Gordon. Flaghouse Inc. recalled 2,400 Kidnastics Balance Beams made in Taiwan.

Updated 9/28/07 - Thomas The Train Engine

Toys and children's necklaces made in China were recalled Wednesday (9/26/07), including five more items from the popular Thomas & Friends Wooden Railway product line, because they were found to contain dangerous levels of lead.

The complete story can be found at


9/05/07 - update - Barbie, Fisher-Price toys in latest recall The Barbie recall involves about 675,000 accessories made between Sept. 30, 2006, and Aug. 20, 2007. (still making bad toys in spite of earlier recalls) The model names, product numbers and affected date code numbers can be found at the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission Web site

8/22/07 - update - The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced yet another recall of dangerous products manufactured in China due to toxic levels of lead. SpongeBob SquarePants address books and journals are being recalled today for the dangerous amounts of lead in the paint on the spiral bindings.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced yet another recall of dangerous products manufactured in China due to toxic levels of lead. SpongeBob SquarePants address books and journals are being recalled today for the dangerous amounts of lead in the paint on the spiral bindings.

Let me start off this post by making it perfectly clear that I am not bashing China. I am bashing the American CEO Carpetbaggers who deal with CHINA at the expense of our Safety and Health. And, I don’t want to hear how many good products outnumber the bad.

Who are the designers and engineers of these products? Who decided to pay for cheap labor and who is ultimately responsible – Yep it’s you the highly compensated CEO Moneychangers who cares about nothing except their own EGO and the Country Club Membership.

I went to buy up some dog food last week and as I picked up some chew bones I glanced to look where they were made – CHINA. Picked up a different kind – CHINA. Moved down to some Jerky – CHINA.

Yes, I already knew about the dog food, toothpaste, kids toys drugs … but I was not aware of how many other dog products like dog-toys and treats were from China.

Speaking of toys I would like to give a shout out to Mattel for being such a money hungry whores. And a double shout out to you other companies that deal with China without any safety and quality controls.

I heard an American CEO Idiot after the Mattel Scandal on TV the other day; he said “We are all picking up our quality control efforts when we receive the goods from China” – WRONG! They should be responsible and must take the loss before being shipped. I guess Process Improvement doesn’t come along with Chinese Products like they did with Japan.

From this point on I will try not to purchase products sponsored by American Companies who will not set safety & quality standards (enforced) with China so that they can earn a quick buck.

For years we have been dealing with outsourcing from India, Mexico, … At least they were not trying to kill our children and our dogs (we have our share of scum’s like Michael Vick & all you other manly men who are dog fighters & supporters).

To all you American CEOs that are dealing with these substandard death producing products from China your time is coming because when it affects someone in your family or from someone’s family in Congress then you will understand what it is to go the rest of your life in “LIVING HELL.” I feel sorry for your American Employees who are innocent causalities with your greed.

All I can say is I can’t wait for EMINENT DOMAIN to take place in China and they can take your companies, technology and products to supply the rest of the world (not including USA) at your expense. It will happen.

I don’t care how big the Chinese Market is and how Companies need it to survive in the "competitive" global marketplace. It is not worth one child’s health and the life of one of our dogs.

Who owns the processes for these kinds of products mentioned above – yes Management owns the system and the CEO & BOD (Don’t think I don’t mean you too) head up the management team.

I would like to also mention that American CEOs are NOT worth (VALUE) as much as they think they are or as much as some Wall Street Stock Trader Kiss Ups & CNBC Brown Nosers keep telling them.

Please tell me I'm wrong, send me the Calculations for the past 5 years that convince me you are Value-Added as much as your salary indicates.

How can your salary be justified, if you are a 20 Billion Dollar Company or a 20 Million Dollar Comapany why do you make so much and your employees so little. How can you be at a company for less than five years and make more than 50 employees together who have been there for 20 -30 years.

Let me ask a few of my own Value-Added questions:

1) Have you met your numbers? - You said you would increase production or sales value by 8%. You were wrong it came in at 4% and the Market rose by 6% and you still get big time money. Why?

2) Do your employees think you are worth your salary as opposed to what they make?

3) Do your Customers think you are worth your salary as compared to the Quality of your product or service?

Another Example of the Demise of American Management.

Additional Information Sites:

The US Commerce Department provides some good information “Essential Advice for Doing Business in China” at this site

Pet Recall at

Toys Recall at

Mattel Inc. Financials at and there is no list of the Board of Directors (BOD).

China Boss of Recalled Toys -

China's food and drug regulator said Wednesday (8/21/07) it would meet regularly with its U.S. counterpart to crack down on counterfeit pharmaceuticals and boost product safety. See Site


I'm Not Alone!
This site was sent to me by KS. - Check it out.

Friday, November 02, 2007

What Does It Say on Your Shirt? Why can't she read?

It’s the Administrators Fault

I received an Email the other day from a mother of an Autistic boy in second grade. Her son is about to be mainstreamed and she asked me what I thought was the most important thing he should learn? It is a timely question because today a10th grade student asked what it said on my shirt.

It’s a good question, what was your first thought? Mine too, yes “Reading” It is not only the most important tool an autistic student should learn but also any student.

We are all aware of the problem. You probably know someone who can’t read. If you don’t drop by your local public high school or ask your child or someone who is in education.

Being able to read should be a pre-requisite for ALL other learning. There should be a special mandate that says in order to pass 5th grade (I’m being gracious) one must be able to read at third grade level and above. Those students below grade level reading must have a “measurable” and “meaningful” plan in place to emphasize reading until the student catches up with his/her peers. I’m including autistic children who are mainstreamed in this proposal.

If the student has not caught up by 7th grade 75% of the classes scheduled should involve some manner that teaches Reading. Why because when they are sent to high school they might be good athletes in gym and can draw great in art and can sing in choir. They need these type of classes to provide self-worth as they continue to learn to read before they leave high school.

To me “Reading is the gateway by which all learning takes place and it is the input for all outputs."

We need to snare reading problems by the time a student is entering second grade. I know by now most of you are saying tell us something we don’t know.

OK, I’m tired of copying notes for high school students who can’t read. However they are experts at copying. They sit and stare at books and fret the chance they may be called on to read. If they sense it, they will cause a disruption even if it requires them being thrown out of the class. I wonder if anyone has done a correlation study to determine if students getting expelled or thrown out of class can read?

What will these kids do when they graduate? Oh yes, I don’t care what law or requirements you put in place there will be special compensation given for most if not all the students who can’t read. So what will they do? READ your newspaper and see where your tax dollars are going, or better yet, go for a walk and see … The next time a high school educator tells me I’m getting to close or the student is being dependent on me to get his/her work done I’m going to tell them someone should have worried about that problem a long time ago. Your system has allowed these students to fail and by the time they get into high school it is too late.

The administrators know it’s too late and just want you to keep pushing the student through because there are too many coming up behind.

I’ve got to go now and type up a paper for a student who can’t read or write a paragraph. However, the student was able to verbally tell me his thoughts on the question or what the answer should be or provide information on the topic at hand. Yes I will type this report and yes I will copy the notes (not for studying but for getting points toward a grade).

I will ensure the students that I work with get some “Joy in Learning and some Self-Worth.” Please don’t get in my way. These students have suffered enough.

For all you Administrators who allowed and continue to let children go through the system should be ashamed, but your not, you think it is someone else’s fault.


Another example from qualityg that shows “The Demise of American Management.”

Oh yeah, my shirt said Lady Monarchs Basketball.

For more examples on the "Demise of American Management (quote from Dr. W. Edwards Deming) click on the label below this post.

Friday, October 26, 2007

"Employee Goals & Objectives for 2008"

It's the end of the year and requestd for goals and objectives will begin for 2008.

The following example are goals and objectives that could come from a Department Head to his/her boss.

I developed some of the examples from some of my own (names/info changed) goals and objectives from the past.

The important things to remember are to include realistic means of measure that will allow you to meet corporate goals and objectives that should have been developed first before you and your team create your own (seldom done & people wonder why they never get done or accomplished). All goals and objectives must be aligned from the top to the bottom and then communicated and EXPLAINED through out the company.

Please note that the example below are high level and need to be in much more detail in the form of strategy and responsibilities.

Double CLICK on EACH Slide To Enlarge - Then Click on 4 arrows for more clarity.

I hope this provides a model that can be used for you and your employees.

To see my model on Team Goals & Objectives go to

To read more posts on Employee Goals and Objectives click on the label below or on the left side bar.


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Retired Lt. General Ricardo Sanchez speaks out and so does qualityg


Retired Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez former leader of the Iraq forces blasted the Bush administration recently for a “catastrophically flawed, unrealistically optimistic war plan” and denounced the current “surge” strategy as a “desperate” move that will not achieve long-term stability.

“There was been a glaring and unfortunate display of incompetent strategic leadership within our national leaders,” he said, adding later in his remarks that civilian officials have been “derelict in their duties” and guilty of a “lust for power.”

These are some pretty strong words. I’m not going to comment on his remarks. I would rather comment on why he made these after he had the job and why did it take so long (I hope there is no book on the way).

Perhaps General Sanchez is like most of us feel when it comes to speaking our minds in what we believe to be the truth must be weighed against what you would lose to do it why you are still working. I suppose the whistleblower Protection Act provides some legal protection but other than that you are on your own. Don’t look to co-workers for help because they too are weighing the risk of job loss, resentment and embarrassment. Unfortunately they will disown you in a heartbeat. Can I blame them? No, but would I do it? Depends if I believe the complaint/cause is true. And, if it would put too many people at risk other than myself.

I am generally regarded to be outspoken and one that is not afraid to take on the establishment, my bosses or whomever I believe is dictating “Absolute Power” ( over myself or against someone I know that needs help, if I believe in their cause.

What makes me do this? Perhaps the right to do so and all the books I’ve read about King Arthur influenced me. In the movie Richard Harris says, “Not might makes right, but might for right.”

To me the secret of picking “The right castle to die on depends on how much knowledge (might) you have on the subject. I have said this and written this in many of my posts:

“Knowledge Is The Great Equalizer”

When one can supply objective facts, figures, examples and experience it allows one to play at the same poker table with anyone. Oh yes, it still is a gamble to risk all the reasons I mentioned above, but it comes to soul searching and picking the right castle.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Dr. Deming said, “ No one has to change. Survival is optional.”


The hardest part about change is when a time comes and a decision has to be made as to accept and absorb it or remain in your present state of expertise or stupidity.

Dr. Deming said, “ No one has to change.
Survival is optional.”

With change comes a balance that must be measured and monitored to make sure too much or too little affects your being in a negative manner.

Change and balance are on going in a continual manner that must be a condition through out your life.

Three examples can prove this theory best. Our Body, Our Educational System and Business Expertise.

Our body goes through a continual change through out our lifetime. As we age and grow wiser we must balance our internal system (i.e., organs) with that of our lifestyle (i.e., health and eating). What one organ does affects the whole body. If one organ is too stressed (positive or negative) or out of balance then negative changes occur. Simply put our body is a system with many interdependent processes that must be aligned.

Evolution is key, one can admit when the times are changing and move along or stay put and sit in park and be miserable as the world goes by.

Science proves this over and over again. Why did the cockroach survive and the dinosaurs did not? The cockroach is a master of adaptation and flexibility.

Dr. Deming said, “ No one has to change.
Survival is optional.”
Our educational system in the United States has not changed since the 19th century. We still have the basic foundational agricultural system (no school in late spring/summer (planting time) and get home early before it gets dark or no chores can be done on the farm) in place today. What we have done is add layer of layer of singular changes that conflict with the previous layers. Simply put the system is not in balance.

Click on Pic to Enlarge
Dr. Deming said, “ No one has to change.
Survival is optional.”

Our business expertise gets stagnated when those with current knowledge refuse to change for fear of losing authority, power and self-worth. I will use my own are of expertise – Quality. Since I first started in Quality in 1980 in the service industry I have gone through every change that has come down the pike from Quality of Work Life (QWL) to the current Six Sigma. Instead of debating which is system is better I have tried to learn the best from each and move forward through test and theory as my basis continual knowledge.
Unfortunately I have seen individuals who have become experts in many of the singular movements like Total Quality Management (TQM), Statistical Process Control (SPC), Six Sigma to name just a few. These folks will debate why there system is better than the rest and will not budge from their platform because they fear loss of power or authority or worse yet their job. If they would just put forth the time they spend not wanting to move on and use that energy toward learning the new method or knowledge they would evolve and be successful.

Dr. Deming said, “ No one has to change.
Survival is optional.”

Click on Pic to Enlarge

Monday, October 08, 2007

What is Quality Knowledge?

qg says ...

Data + Information + Application = Knowledge (D+I+A=K)
add Listening + Observing = Wisdom (D+I+A=K + LO = W).

Heads up education and business leaders (hierarchy does not equal intelligence).

Example - I can go on the Internet and read a number of books on how to remodel my bathroom. I can even conduct a conversation that sounds like I know what I'm doing, and I can even spout off all the research about the modern bathroom that I gather from the Mr. Handyman shows on TV and radio.

However, I can predict to you in confidence that I wouldn't know the first step (well maybe, beat down the walls) in "actually" doing the job myself.

Remember, qg says:

"It is only through trial and error, listening, observing and application ("theory") that I gain the knowledge and wisdom to be able to do the job myself and then pass on my knowledge to others."

To read more on knowledge go to my post at

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

My CEO Says "We Need To Be More Creative" qualityg says ...

From a Friend,

I am perplexed, about a month or so ago our CEO gave a speech rallying the troops stating “That we need to be more creative because our companyis going to focus more on being a Global Force.” My company supplies the auto company and we focus on putting together complete automotive interiors, including seat systems, interior trim and electrical systems.

While visiting our office he made a comment wanting to know why he saw so many “foreign” cars in the company parking lot.

qualityg says ...

Your CEO sounds like a candidate for qualityg’s section on FOOLS(at Since this type of tragedy happens in may companies let me answer if this was like a Shakespearean tragedy like “King Lear?” It’s generally regarded as one of William Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies.

I may be making a stretch here in stating that the “Global” speech was made at your headquarters or somewhere the CEO wanted to get some print because after all the CEO is like a “Caesar.”

Since you are from Michigan I would bet that your CEO (Caesar) did what any kiss-up emperor would do, and that is, Detroit (When in Rome ...) is the home of what was the "Big 3" I’m sure he is playing his act for the US automakers. Alas, behind every Caesar is a Brutus and eventually those who play both sides of the fence will eventually be caught. I just hope the employees will not suffer because that would be the greatest tragedy of all!!

More on absolute power at my post

If you drive a foreign car and it has a component from your company just tell the CEO you’re advertising the company's product. If not, ask him why his Senior Management Team (they own the system) has not truly entered the global marketplace.

Monday, October 01, 2007

"A Walk for Autism" and How about Advocacy?


I attended a "Walk For Autism" at the Detroit Zoo yesterday. It was a very crowded event with thousands of people that were mostly in specifically designed T-shirts. My niece sponsored our team from our area named “Coalition For A Cure.’

Getting in the Zoo was the hardest part because of the traffic jam with so many cars entering even before the Zoo officially opened at 10:00 am.

There were big tents all around that represented registration, food, team waiting area, resource, quiet tent any more. The tent I spent the most time was in the resource tent were there was many displays from different counties and kiosks from people representing speech therapy, oils, toys, psychiatry and more. Each table had handouts with information and explaining how important their clinic was for Autism.

Following are some figures and comments sent out from my niece (Thanks KC - you did great):
We were expecting about 3,000 walkers. Actual number of tickets handed out: 7,049!!! Last week we had roughly $305,000 raised. Last number I heard before leaving the zoo: $515,000!!!I can't believe what a success today was. Thank you so much for spreading the word and donating to a great cause. I can't believe this is the first year for the Walk in Detroit! We beat Chicago's first year numbers, which is not a small feat!

The main reason I spent so much time in the resource tent was because I was looking for information on one specific topic. I wanted to get more information on education. I wanted to know more about the laws governing what a child is entitled to when they have Autism. I wanted information about advocacy and help for the parents when they venture into an IEP meeting with so many professionals sitting around a table using acronyms that most parents would have no idea what it meant.

I have searched the Web and found some information but not enough to prove to me that this area of Autism is covered. I also called Autistic Society’s with little help. I searched Amazon for books with autism and advocacy and found none.

I guess that is why I am documenting everything I have done in the school and also my experiences outside when it comes to education and autism and how to help the child best in the classroom.

Perhaps that is why I get so many Emails from around the world thanking me for whatever information and experiences I provide. Too many are relying on the Special Education Departments (think about how confident you are about other government programs) to help them. Many of the S.E.D. folks are overwhelmed and have heavy case loads and little time or experience (my Emails and experiences are proof).

I guess what I am trying to say is there is so much focus on the cause and cure (rightly so) that little is done for those already in the mainstreamed educational system. What will happen to them if they are pushed through like so many of the other learning disabled children (it’s already happening). For Autistic children if the school determines them they can’t make it. For the learning and emotionally disabled there is little to choose from, be a dropout or make it through high school and be added to the social programs set up by the government or just drift away. There are contained rooms and disability centers (I believe the majority being mainstreamed should not be put in those situations).

I will stay in the road less traveled and leave a trail for others to follow and improve. If you can help with this type of information (advocacy in schools) please send me an email at

To read my other posts on Autism please click on the ASD Label below this post and they will all pop up for you to red.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

How do I find a good Quality Consultant Group?

I received an interesting Email that I would like to share:

“I have been assigned to find a company that specializes in Continuous Process Improvement (Kaizen). There are thousands of hits off the Search Engines. I was intrigued by your blog because you don’t advertise all those silly ads and you seem to say (question) it straight and at the same time saying you are not an expert. Can you “please” recommend a company I can contact?
- Desperate in Atlanta

A) Before and after the Internet explosion I had the responsibility of traveling the United States attending many Quality Forums, Seminars, Baldrige Visits,Trainings, etc by Quality professionals (at least 20 or more) all promising one way or another that their product and services was the answer to my company’s needs and requirements.

I found some promising (we eventually settled on one now bought out by another vendor which I do not support) but most were nothing more than charlatans hiding behind some buzz words and articles that others had written in the American Society for Control (now ASQ) Magazine.

The Internet has increased the number of Charlatans advertising by 10 fold and now blogs have added another ten fold of Houdini quality wannabees. Personally as I stated before I don’t care if folks advertise on their sites but it is strange they would promote someone else selling the same stuff they are trying to sell (that should be your first warning) on their blogs. They get paid for folks hitting those sights by Google.

Don’t let any Internet site convince you they have the solutions or answers to your problems (second warning). Watch out for ones that criticize others with no basis or facts other than what they think they know (third warning). Remember, the Internet is information, not knowledge. I call it the “Global Billboard.”

Do your homework, create a list of questions, visit the company or request they visit you, agree to nothing over the phone or any form of E-mail or Web communicating other than getting information. Continue to ask questions and more questions that pertain to your situation, if you get wide variation of answers from Manufacturing to Service to … that they do it all hang up immediately (fourth warning). If you become more interested ask for a list of clients and contacts, DO NOT let them send you to one or to recommend whom to call. If they do not supply a complete list, say good bye (fifth warning). If the Quality improvement consultants does not have enough resources (they will say yes and hire people after they secure your contract) to handle a company of your size, sayonara (sixth warning). Ask for a history of the company you want to do business with, how many times have they changed their names to join on the quality band wagon (Q – Circles to Lean Sigma, seventh warning) Last warning, if the company you are dealing with does not have employees trained by one of the Quality Masters (i.e. Deming) or one of their “appointed” followers keep searching. Just make sure they are not self proclaiming themselves.

You would be amazed by the answers or no answers I get to questions from Blog sites that proclaim self-imposed expertise. I am no expert, just one person seeking Profound Knowledge by asking continual questions that has traveled the Q shaped road for many years... I hope the couple of leads I sent will help. Good Luck

Friday, September 14, 2007

Tom Watkins: VW's, state's talent is leaving

Tom Watkins knows the Michigan Educational system as well as anyone in the state of Michigan. He sent me an article today that must be shared because it really gets to the heart of the manner as to why our best and brightest are leaving the state.

Tom Watkins, is an education and business consultant. He served as Michigan's superintendent of schools from 2001-2005. He can be reached at

Please read Tom's article at

What follows is my response back to Tom that backs up his story with my immediate family as an example.


Super Article! You are so right about talent leaving. Let me give you an example in my immediate family. 2 nieces and 1 nephew (all graduated from MSU in the last 3 years) moved to Chicago after failing to find work in Michigan in their field and found good paying jobs within a month. They love the city and have no plans to return to Michigan.

My own son graduated from Michigan State in Economics. Applied to different colleges to study Economic Policy. The only college that refused him was University of Michigan (MSU did not have the program). Thus, I pay out state tuition and the U of M Dean told him their program was for International Students (more $$ for them).

The state does nothing to support our best and brightest, most of the money goes to those who never had a chance because of low income, and all the other stuff (I'm not saying don't give them money I'm just saying do what is right for all our children). Many drop out with wasted state dollars (GRANT) doing no good. Would it not be better to help our brightest and keep them in the state instead of telling them no and you don't qualify for GRANTS.

My son's 1 1/2 program costs over $45,000 dollars and that was one of the cheaper out state programs he could have attended (no help in $$). He has no plans to return to Michigan and I have encouraged him not to because of the economic and employment environment.

My daughter will graduate in 2008 from Michigan State (you still think I don't qualifyfor funds) in Marketing. She has yet to make up her mind where she wants to work. I have another nephew that graduates this year and has no plans to stay in Michigan.

5/6 say no to Michigan and 1 undecided.

One family Tom, and I know I'm not alone ( I don't get any financial help either)!

I almost forgot I am attending college too!


Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Hiring Process is the most important process in a Company

I was asked by an old business friend recently,

“What do you think is the most important process in a company?

Years ago I gave the standard quality response “ the most important process that any company has is the process (es) that adds value to the customer.” About ten years ago I changed my answer and still believe the “hiring” process is the most important process in the company. Many people have debated me on that answer and there is truth to there arguments. So if it’s not the most important I say it is the most important “undervalued” process in a company.

We all know most American Management spout employees are the most important assets to a company. Then why are they considered an expense that needs to be reduced to make up for debt or loss of revenue (because it’s easy)? Human Resources don’t carry much weight when it comes to being considered a critical department within an organization. However, when you stop looking through narrow eyes and open your self to systems thinking (end-to-end), the HR department is at the beginning and the end of an employees process. HR hires and HR conducts your exit review and papers.

Now, think in terms of process control and understand that most problems occur early on in a process and they intern cause multiple downstream problems and bottlenecks. Quality Experts and Process Improvement Teams will attack and try to correct all the “symptoms” downstream (often blaming a person and not the system). The process originated by placing employees in jobs they are not qualified for or can no longer do the job as technology increases and more skills are required (just a few examples). Maybe the HR representatives are not qualified or have the tools to do their jobs.

Management owns the hiring system. It is not a worker’s fault if placed in a job where failure is guaranteed. It is not the worker’s fault if a company slashes training and education that is required as new technology is implemented. It is Management’s job to replace the worker if they are not performing and place them in a job where they can take pride of their work (do we really think people want to fail).

Incentives to Keep High School Dropouts in school? I Think NOT!

At a school meeting this week the subject of dropouts came up and one teacher suggested providing incentives to keep the kids in school.

Now that I have been studying, researching, testing, observing and assessing “Early Childhood” behavior I am more convinced that teachers, parents, coaches and to some extent peers drive out the intrinsic motivation that each child has when starting school as early as the Pre-K level (not a new discovery by any means, but it helps me understand the end-to-end education system from an application view and not just theory).

We are taking from our children the chance to experience “Joy of Learning” (Deming). These types of suggestions are alarming to me because the education system is following the same pattern as big business. Incentives, rewards, etc... are extrinsic motivators that drive the wrong behavior.

If students come to view learning as a means to get a reward/incentive, they will not longer identify learning as something worth doing for the long-term (whole life). American Management still believes rewards and incentives are the way to motivate employees to do a better job. At best, rewards will get some temporary reaction, but it does not last, nor does it change behaviors for the long term and it does more harm than good. Same thing will happen in education. PLEASE DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN!!

People are not realizing that fear, incentives (you can have candy if your good or if you eat your vegetables you can have a big piece of cake) negativity, threats, rating students, ranking students are extrinsic in nature and it is these same motivators (negative) used at an early age that drove the inclination to learn out in the first place.

By most accounts studies have shown there is a 30 – 35% dropout rate at the high school level. The Alliance for Excellent Education research shows that between 80 –85% of Americans believe the number one priority in our country is high school education.

WRONG!!! Here we go again not looking at the systemic nature (end-to-end) of the problem. High School is the output. 95% percent of most problems can be found in the planning, design and the first few input steps of any process. Please start to understand the cost and tampering you are continually doing to this system.

By suggesting High School is where we should put the majority of money and effort is like bringing back quality control at the end of the production line.

Systems Optimization: It’s about interdependencies, we must realize that change cannot occur in one school level without affecting the performance and outcome in all other parts of the primary educational system, the system as a whole, and ultimately all other systems by which the school system operates.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

It's what Managers Do Best - "Tampering"

Tampering - What many Managers do becasue they do not understand Variation. Basically it is the unnecessary adjustments (decisions) made in an effort to compensate for common cause variation.

Common Cause Variation - Systemic Variation that is found in all processes (i.e., inputs, new conditions, etc...) that defines the amount of variation that is within every system. Very very difficult to identify one source to common cause variation (as opposed to special cause variation).

Special Cause Variation - Are specific factors that attack a system like a virus attacks a body, they can usually be tracked down to a single source and removed. The key is identifying data in a timely manner, removing and preventing this cause from happening again. Spacial Cause results in big spikes to a system or process and must be dealt with in a completely different manner than Common Cause Variation.


Additional Information (Post) on Worker Variation can be found at

Additional Information (Post) on Cost of Poor Quality can be found at

Sunday, September 09, 2007

How should we conduct CHANGE with Autistic Children in Mainstreaming?

There is a constant battle going on in many School Systems when it comes to Mainstreaming/Inclusion Autistic (ASD) students with a one-on-one-aide for an indefinite time period (i.e., 2-5 years) or rotate 2-3 aides every few months and replacing existing ones when new aides are hired.

It does not matter which solution is correct or a combination of solutions. What matters is the affect it will have on the child, teacher, and classmates, end of story. I have zero tolerance for any behavior or decision that is not in the best interest of the child/student.

With reference to my previous post on this subject I would like to explain when a change of this magnitude takes place.

When working as an aide you work within a system (Special Education) made up of sub-processes (i.e. Mainstreaming one-on-one support).

In order to understand this clearly it needs to be explained through Systems Thinking and Process Improvements.

System Thinking means:

“Employees work in a System. Management owns the System.”A system is a whole consisting of two or more parts, (1) each of which can affect the performance or properties of the whole, (2) none of which can have an independent affect on the whole, and (3) no subgroup of which can have independent affect on the whole. In short, then, a system is a whole that cannot be divided into independent parts or subgroups of parts.

When changes are implemented without regards to trending data, accurate information, documented observations, and failure to understand end-to-end thinking chaos will run through your process.

Process means:

A series of steps or actions that lead to a desired result or output (what do we expect when we are done. If we don’t know the goal or outcome then anything will be right or wrong depending on the person in charge). Goals are to be created by Management not the other way around. Workers develop the means (plans, strategy, work plans, job aides & a way to measure to determine success) based on their subject matter expertise to meet the goals.

A set of common tasks (standard – if no standard you have no means for a stable process) that creates a product, service, process, or plan that will satisfy a customer or group of customers. If a permanent aide is ill or has to leave for a period of time, plans already should be in place for another existing aide who the child is comfortable with to fill in the gap. Prioritize your ASD children with you aides and it will work out fine (test & determine).

A sequential series of steps leading to a desired outcome (if you have no operational definition, purpose or goal established by management you WILL have failure).

Processes are largely affected by one or more of the following factors:

a) personnel who work in the processes (not including anyone or group that works in the process will result in failure, frustration and high turnover);

b) materials which are used as inputs (including behavioral logs, documented observations and subject matter expert information and data);

c) testing techniques being used in the process (in process execution or monitoring/measurement;

d) methods (including criteria and various documentations used along the process, how will we know if we are successful, if you don’t have methods success is determined through management who own the system);

e) work environment (if any of the above are not correct it will affect the environment big time).

Understanding how these factors interact and affect processes is a key consideration in process studies and quality improvement.

Standardization - for an explanation read my post at
Every process improvement starts and ends with standardization. Everyone (aides) doing the same process must be doing the same type of measuring, using the same methods, documenting the same log sheets (keeping them for improvement opportunities) with the same set of codes and understanding and object observations that are part of process (job). If none of these are set up or in place you have an out-of-control process with willing workers doing their best to create structured chaos. If this is the case the success or failure belongs to management because they own the process/system.

So with changing a permanent aide who has worked with an ASD child for years and has been successful based on those who have worked with the child including his personal therapist and psychiatrist can result in a traumatic result to the child.

This is especially true if the process is stopped abruptly and changed radically with little or no reliable data or information on what to improve and more importantly on how to improve the situation. Change for the sake of change is stupid!

When this type of change happens in business you can lose a customer, in education you take the chance of losing a child’s education, knowledge and involvement in society. You may get a customer back but in education the child becomes lost in the system.

If management (administrators) wishes to make changes such as these with so much at risk they should at least do the following;

Start off with documenting a standard method/procedures (with purpose & goals) by which all aides will work in the same manner.

Next begin to monitor the new method (process) with objective data, input and information from reliable sources (including parents, teachers & aides.

Most importantly conduct a test case with appropriate people, measures and child because of the risk factor (child’s learning). To not do this is instant failure.

Management will let you know when something is a failure or if something is right if you start out without knowing the AIM/Purpose of your system you are doing nothing more than tampering with the system.

When implementing changes management should listen to the Voice of the Process and People and not the other way around . – VERY DANGEROUS.

As I have often stated

“Data + Information + Application = Knowledge”
add Listening to the equation and you get Wisdom”

Monday, September 03, 2007

Quality versus Quantity - Toyota Has Both

This is what General Motors, Ford and Chrysler fail to learn.

"As we continue to elevate quality in our products, then I think quantity will follow as a result," - Katsuaki Watanabe - Toyota President

We = Toyota Employees, not Us versus Them

Continue = Continual – they have been on the same Quality track for many years. No starting and stopping of Quality Programs, just continual process improvement, it's a journey not a merry-go-round.

Elevate Quality in our Products = never stop, never satisfied; key is prevention, systems thinking at its best.

I think quantity will follow as a result = Humble, no demanding of Quality, but confident quality system will produce more quality products.


Thursday, August 30, 2007

Potential Exposure of Personal ID!!!

I wonder if I can sue for false advertising. The big time fake BS AT&T ( sent me a letter the other day. Here are some sentences.

Dear Sir or Madam: - Heck you addressed it to me I’m a man.

This letter is to advise you of a recent theft of a LAPTOP computer containing your personal information.

The LAPTOP was stolen from an employee of a professional services doing work for BS AT&T.

qg says – Are you kidding me? A contractor (who probably took a regular employees job) has my SSN and address and …

BS AT&T is offering you “free” of charge one year of Equifax Credit Watch Gold.

BS AT&T deeply regrets this incident and is taking steps to reinforce that our policies to safeguard your information.


Dorothy Atwood
Chief Privacy Officer AT&T

qg says …

Are you the same Dorothy Atwood that worked for the FCC?
Are you the Dorothy Atwood that lives in D??? Texas?
Are you the Dorothy Atwood that …?

George Costanza says ...

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Ford: Quality is Job One & Two & Three ...

I thought I was in a time warp this morning when I opened up the paper to read, “There’s an untold story behind Ford’s dramatic improvement in quality ratings.

Ford Motor Company removed 100 top (?) assembly workers out of the plant for months to help engineers, designers. And suppliers identify quality problems in manufacturing.

Say what, I thought you were already doing this since 1981.
  • "I'm proud to say I'm a Deming disciple, and we at Ford are committed to his operating principles, particularly the ethic of continuous improvement and the involvement of all employees." - Donald E. Petersen Chairman of the Board Emeritus, Ford Motor Company.
  • Ford Motor Company called upon Dr. Deming to help. According to Don Petersen, former CEO and Board Chairman of Ford, Deming’s approach was the key to the turn around of the fortunes of Ford. Waste was reduced, labor relations improved, customer satisfaction increased and Ford was able to stay in business and compete again. Petersen is unequivocal about the basis for Ford's success: "People want to do a good job, Dr. Deming's ideas and concepts, as we got them going through our system, gave people more and more this feeling that they had a better chance to do a good job. The rate of improvement, in many ways, was much grater than anything we could anticipate."

I still read articles, books, and magazines and attend conferences on Quality Improvement. I am not very tolerant when it comes to people or consultants that proclaim them selves to be Quality experts, especially those who claim to have created a new Quality Process or Program.

The reason I keep researching and studying Quality initiatives is so I can keep learning. Unfortunately all I find is retread quality material and articles that I used to read and listen to in the 1980s and 1990s.

It has been years since a new innovative approach has been developed or some new school of thought regarding Quality Process Improvement. I include Six Sigma, Lean and Lean Six Sigma as evolutions of Quality. Perhaps they have created a few new steps or ideas but they are far far from being new or innovative.

I have collected Quality Digest and American Society of Quality (ASQ) magazines since the 1979. When I read a Blog or a Post on some Six Sigma Site I often pull out an old article that has already written and provided examples some 20 + years ago.

I’m all for learning and keep learning but I am against people passing themselves and their products off as their own thinking and creations. I often post on these sites and challenge their thinking and claims to be experts, I also provide proof. You should see some of the responses I get, usually by others who are friends or colleagues of the person I am challenging.

Humbly some of my writings and process improvement creations can be found on other sites passed off as original of the author. My only hope is the material is being used for improvement within companies.

There are no quick fixes, no low hanging fruit ( and no new process on the market that can improve a system or process that has already been done and tested.

Dr. Deming told Ford Motor Company (and many many others) in the 1980s on how to improve a system. I guess the new leaders at Ford don’t remember this training and knowledge they received and that is not only their problem it is the problem of many American Companies today. See Below Deming Flow from 1950, it still holds true today from which all other Quality processes originate.
Click on Flow to Enlarge

Friday, August 17, 2007

Dual Disabilities Including "ASD" - GAPS & The Last Week (8/12/07)

July 4th, 2007

I decided to work part-time this summer at a Learning Center that specializes in working with kids and young adults with dual disabilities. The seven young men (ages 17 – 24) in the room where I work have a multiple of problems.

Many are Emotionally and Cognitively Impaired (EI & CI). A few have Autism (ASD) with ADHD, EI or CI. For the past three weeks I have learned so much by listening and asking questions and then observe and taking mental notes on how I can improve each day to help the young men with their daily tasks and education.

Many folks have asked me if this is harder than working with the young boys (ages 6 – 9) that I work with during the school year who are higher performing and mainstreamed (

It’s hard to say which is harder at this point because each person has different triggers and stages of development they are it with their disabilities. Some of the young men live in Group Homes and others with their families.

Some of the boys with dual disabilities are much more physical with their outbursts than the younger mainstreamed boys but no less lovable with their affections.

This is a great setting for my on-going learning. I smile a lot during the day because I am pleased that so many people work for small wages and give so much of their time and expertise in working with these children and young adults.

One lady asked me after a young man slapped her and grabbed a chair he was about to throw at her if I missed the working world. In all honesty I said “ I would rather be here than working with high level executives and officials who put greed and selfishness above humanity.” I also added “You should try managing a large number of Direct Reports, if you think these kids have issues, those working in the so-called real world have choices and still choose to make very bad decisions.”

July 16, 2007

I am learning so much working at the center this summer. All of the staff people are very giving and care deeply about the program. Observing, questioning and taking mental notes along with practical application is a great learning method.

What alarms me the most are the large numbers of children and young adults that attend this program. I can't imagine what it must have been like 20 years ago and longer when programs like this did not exist. I counted the buses this morning - 24! Not all are filled but even if there was just one child in each bus that is too much.

As I was waiting for the students to arrive last week I was reading the list of names of the people who come on the bus from the city where I grew up. Much to my surprise I read a name of a young woman who I knew as a baby as consider her parents to be two of the finest people I know and are proud to call them friends. God could not have given a child better parents and siblings.

I remember seeing her as a baby and buying her a "Baby's First Christmas Bulb" when she was born. With some moves to other cities and raising a family of our own I only sparingly saw her parents over the years at a store or outing. Always saying we will get together but somehow it never happened.

As I entered her room I asked the teachers and workers if "AW" was here? I introduced myself and told them I had not seen her since she was a baby.

A very loving teacher walked me over to where she was and I looked down and a beautiful girl dressed in a yellow dress with yellow ribbons in her hair as she laid there in a bed. She looked the same to me as I saw her in her crib after she was born. I sat down next to her and whispered to her how we met and how happy I was to see her. She turned her head to acknowledge she knew someone was there and allowed me to continue our conversation without getting upset or startled at a new person.

I walked her off the bus in her wheelchair the next day and talked to her some more before school started. I plan on visiting her every day. What a great week. 23 years later and I have found an old friend.

July 25, 2007

One lesson I have learned over the years is to respect the Perimeter requirements of my ASD students. When they get upset to many people with good intentions rush to there aid and are often met with a big surprise - "WHACK" right across the face and then the fun really begins.

So far six workers have felt the WHACK from one of our ASD students. The reason being because we entered his Perimeter and if you watch him he will give you verbal and physical warnings to back off.

We had a Sub yesterday and it's like telling a child not to touch hot stove - WHACK across the face. I was able to get him in control and then take him to a safe spot where we sit before he goes home each day. Keep your distance when he says no a couple of times to different requests and do not Box him in at his table. He needs space and will get it if you go over the line.

Today we got a little (actually a lot) noisy surrounding his table. I was one of the culprits. I could see he (Whacker) was getting agitated and the next thing he got up walked over to me and slapped me on the shoulder shouting my name and then walked calmly back to his seat. He was trying to do what we have been working on and that is tell me (I can now say VOCALLY) when you start to get upset and I will correct the situation. Well, he told me and I cleared the pathway and lowered the noise and all was fine.

Following a few guidelines will result in the student to do what you initially requested (At least most of the time) and you will not look like Chuck Wepner (fight fans will know what I mean). See his sight at



TLC does not stand for Tender Loving Care in this post; it is the initials of the Center I’m working at this summer. However, TLC is what the staff, teachers and aides do for each and every child and you adult.

Each day brings a new learning experience by either observing, questioning and listening. Last week one of the boys who is not in my class but is on the bus route I am responsible for (getting on/off bus) had a seizure while we waited in the gym for his bus. At first he slid to the side of his wheelchair, as I sat him up he seemed fine (he does not speak) and I turned to wipe up the drool of another student I turned back and he was slumped over again and I immediately called for help and was assisted with in nanoseconds of my request.

I could feel his body and extremities going rigid very quickly. As I helped him up in his chair the lady assisting me began to squeeze the pressure points in his thumbs. Within a few minutes the seizure was over I asked her why the pressure on his thumbs? She told me his Mom is a therapist and this helps him relive the pressure of the seizure. In fact he was trying to squeeze his own thumbs during the seizure so he knows this will help himself.

His family was called and we made sure he was OK (Nurse arrived) before putting him on the bus. Since it was a 90-degree day we got ice packs and had his bus aide make sure he was cool on the way home.
I have decided to recertify my Red Cross Certifications for infants, children and adults in First Aid, CPR and AED.

Why is it all buses have heat for the kids in the winter but not air conditioning for the extremely warm days from May to September. I know most of the general ed kids don’t go to school in the summer but one bus to transport these children should be a requirement. I suppose the Basketball Floor needs refurnishing or the practice Football Field needs new Sod.

The young men in my room continue to provide daily learning experiences and fun. We had a bus trip to a park where we have a small garden that gets watered, two guys went Bowling and two others were taken on a Boat ride by the local yacht club where they were treated to pop, chips, hot hogs and treats. I knew they had a good time when one of the boys said a girl was driving by in a boat with a lot of hot babes. They were each given cowboy hat too – Whew Baby Now!

I now call them “The Magnificent Seven!”


GAPS & The Last Week

I am really going to miss the M7 when the Summer Program ends this week. It has been a wonderful experience that has taught me so much about the Different People who often go unnoticed or uncared about by the general society except for their parents and loved ones.

One the most useful things learned was the labeling of the four behaviors that most commonly cause outbursts by the ASD folks. I knew these prior to my learning but they were put in such a useful Acronym by David Angel ( a highly respected author on Autism from the United Kingdom.
I "urge" you all to visit his site for a wealth of information on Autismm & Aspergers

G - Give Something

A - Avoid Something

P - Pain

S - Sensory (Hyper/Hypo)

One of the young lady teachers for the summer who is going to get her own permanent job in the Fall asked me for advice. I just told her to "Be Humble & Be Confident."

We had our Pizza Party yesterday to celebrate the completion of our summer school program. Everyone ate their fill and we even had one large pizza left over. I am sorry to see it end but I know I can stop by and visit the class during the school year.

I really enjoyed the people I worked with and I am fortunate to be able to continue our friendship because we all work in the same school district.

Everyone gets a two week break before school begins after Labor Day.

For me I will be back at the same Elementary School hopefully continuing my work with Justin, Jeremy and the others as I continue my search for establishing socialization for the boys I have worked with for the past 3 years.

I look forward to working again with the teachers from last year (EB & AL) and also the new teachers that I will hopefully serve in the best capacity I know how.

To read my other posts on ASD simply click on the ASD Label below and they will all be pulled up in order - Thank You