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Maset News
Volume 60  March 29, 2006

Message From Charles Loew
Comments From Our Readers
New On The Maset Web Site
Tips for New Employee Integration
Tips from Our School for Managers
One Liners
Feature Of This Issue
Second Feature Of This Issue
Third Feature Of This Issue
Coming in the Next Few Issues


Welcome to MASET News. A monthly publication dedicated to the communication between MASET and our many interested friends, customers and potential customers



This is our 60th edition of the Maset News. We hope we have been a help to each and every one of our readers. We hope that we have helped you understand what is going on in the area of Customer Satisfaction, Quality, and Cycle Time Reduction as well as many other areas of business. Please let us know if we are meeting your needs and also what change you would like to see in the Maset News. We do thank each and every one of you for being a loyal reader.

Andrew E. Schwartz, the author of "Our School for Managers", has developed ten workshops that can be formatted in different lengths with emphasis on different areas for managers. These courses are ideal for new managers as well as for very experienced managers at all levels in the organization. We have currently added the first two of these courses to our offerings with the remainder being added during the next few months.

Most of the Maset Associates have broad experience throughout their careers and are ideal candidates to serve on Board of Directors and/or Advisory Boards. Included on the Maset Team are experts in technology, business, management and many other areas. Please contact me at if you have any specific needs. We will be able to match the background you are seeking and present you with the best candidate for your needs.

Our first article, written by our own Dennis Sowards, covers a complete understanding about Lean. This is an excellent introduction to Lean, pulling all the pieces together in one clear concise summary. After reading the article, you will acquire a good understanding of the tools available and realize it is not difficult to begin using some of the basic concepts in your organization If you are considering implementing Lean, please contact us so that we can work with you in this effort.
Our second feature article titled, "The Chinese are Coming? The Chinese are Coming" by Scott M. Paton, discusses the upcoming changes as a result of China's entry into the world economies. US business managers at all levels are not taking this threat seriously. As a business person who has worked with Chinese organizations, let me emphasize that they are excellent competitors and will destroy our business climate in short order unless we are willing to change. The issues facing the auto industry are just a very small indication of what we can look forward to in all of our business. We must begin to face these realities today. We can not afford to wait any longer.
Our final article titled "Stakeholders Bill of Rights" by H. James Harrington, should be carefully read and personalized. This article discusses the values that each of us should develop for ourselves and then recommends that we be sure that our values match the values of our employer. If they do not match closely, then we have only two choices: Try to change the values of the organization or leave the organization and try to find one that closely matches our values.

Unfortunately today many organizations need to have their values changed to be more Customer focused, (I use Customer in the broadest sense as all stakeholders), but are not interested or willing to stand up for the values that most of us are striving to achieve. Read the article and begin to formulate your values and see if you can help to change your organization.



No feedback received this month


We are pleased to add the first two new workshops available for Management Training this month. The consultant who developed these workshops, Andrew E. Schwartz, is the author of "Tips from Our School of Managers". The first workshop, titled School For Managers, is an overview for managers who have not had any formal training and serves as an excellent refresher course for experienced managers. The second course, titled Time/Self Management: Organizing Yourself, covers the fundamentals of Time Management.

Martin Hedley has updated his resume and we have it on the web site.

A number of the Senior Associates of Maset LLC are available to serve on Company or Organizational Board of Directors or on Advisory Boards. All of the Maset Associates have extensive management experience in a variety of fields and have held numerous senior management positions in their careers. Our new Product and Service titled Board Representation describes some of the possible arrangements that can be developed with Maset. Feel free to contact us if we can assist your organization in this way.


Tips for New Employee Integration
Provided by Orientation Passport

TIP 23: Celebrate the New Hire Joining Your Organization
Have the CEO or Site Manager do part of orientation presentation to show the new hires how important they are to the organization.

TIP 24: Tools to Make Them Part of the Team
Encourage the manager to invite the new hire and significant other out for dinner. Allow manager to expense the cost.

Visit the Products and Services describing the Orientation Passport


Tips from Our School for Managers
- by Andrew E. Schwartz


You've known about it since high school or college, when everybody boasted about it. Everyone put off papers for a basketball game or a night on the town. It was OK - you only go through college once, right? You left college, but did you leave procrastination? You are now accountable for procedures and personnel responsibilities more complicated and more consequential than any you shouldered in college. Have your habits and attitudes evolved to handle them?

This link will take you to some of the workshops offered by Andrew E. Schwartz through Maset LLC.

Copyright A.E. Schwartz & Associates, all rights reserved


ONE LINERS - "To make you think and/or smile"

  • Practice is the best of all instructors.
  • "No one made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little." -- Edmund Burke




Lean Thinking is not a Fad Diet

By Dennis Sowards

When Charles asked me to write an article about Lean, I wondered how I could add something new to the field. It seems that everyone is writing about Lean, in fact it may be that more is written about Lean than is currently known! For those already familiar with Lean I hope this may be a good refresher and for those not yet familiar I intend that this will be a useful introduction. I am writing this in a conversational form using questions and answers. Since it is really a one-way conversation, hopefully the questions are representative of what you might ask.

Q: What is Lean?

A: Lean is giving the customer increased value and eliminating waste. Lean is about only providing what the customer needs and delivering the product or service (almost) instantly. Lean is about driving out waste. In fact, waste is defined as the opposite of value, as anything that does not add value to the customer.

Q: What is Value?

A: Value is what the customer is actually willing to pay for. The economist defines value as the ratio of usefulness (to the customer) to the cost. Value includes the product’s functions and features and relates to the whole product and/or service. Cost includes the price paid and the cost in terms of time and hassle in obtaining and using the product/service. In today’s fast-paced world, customers often place greater value on experiencing less hassle than on price. Jim Womack, author of Lean Thinking and creator of the term “Lean” defines value as:

Solving my need or problem completely

Not wasting my time

Providing exactly: What I want; When I want it; and Where I want it!

Q: What is Waste?

A: Waste is anything that does not add value! A Lean company views the waste and non-value-added activities from the customerís perspective and is dedicated to driving out waste. The seven basic kinds of waste are:

• Waste of Defects: This is work that contains errors or rework or does not function as designed or intended. Misunderstanding the customer’s requirements or expectations can cause defective waste. This waste often stems from lack of having and using standard processes.

• Waste of Transportation of Goods: This is the movement of material or goods. Though necessary, any movement of a product does not usually add value. Only if one fabricates or changes the product while transporting it does it add value. Sometimes during transporting, damage occurs causing more waste. This type of waste is caused by poor work area layout, by lack of an organized system for materials placement or staging, by poor logistics planning and/or by receiving material too early to use.

• Waste of Over-Production: Producing more than the customer needs or more than is needed at that time is waste. Examples include fabricating material to keep the plant or shop busy or based on a sales forecast, stockpiles in the warehouse or printing more marketing report copies than needed.

• Waste of Waiting by Employees or Equipment: This is waiting for processes, crews or equipment to finish work or for an upstream activity to be completed. Examples are idle time in which workers are waiting for instruction or materials, a machine waiting for material or when payroll is waiting for late time sheets. Waiting is caused by poor communication between the operations, support functions and/or suppliers. It also happens when people are unsure what is to be done; and/or because of poor coordination between functions.

• Waste in Over-Processing: Unnecessary or extra steps in the process or any steps that do not create value from the customer’s viewpoint are waste. Over-processing includes writing too many purchase orders, over-engineering, multiple handling of timesheets, too many approval signatures, duplicate entry on a form or in data-entry fields, inspections, and getting double and triple estimates from suppliers. Over-processing is caused by a lack of standard methods, over control, poor communication or poor planning. Waste often occurs when a process slowly changes over time and no regular examination is conducted to assess whether the process meets current requirements.

• Waste of Motion: Movement of people that does not add value such as treasure hunts by operations workers looking for tools, material or information; or searches in the office for contracts, files or vendor catalogues. Waste in motion may occur when an operator has to reach for a tool, part or material that is outside his or her strike zone. Waste of motion is caused by poor planning and organization, poor ergonomic design of the work area and/or by a lack of standard methods.

• Waste of inventory: Any material or parts not being used by the customer is waste. This includes raw material, work in process and final production. This type of waste includes parts, excess space and unused tools, copies and reports. Stashes and personal stockpiles are waste, too. While inventory may be needed to ensure that the work is performed in a timely manner, it is still waste. Inventory is an especially costly and usually overlooked as waste. Accounting even calls it an asset, but it is waste. It ties up working capital and space, requires controls to ensure security, must be continually monitored and leads to additional handling.

Companies have traditionally accumulated inventory because of unreliable support from suppliers or delivery function or because of breakdowns in the production process. Inventory is especially bad because it often hides other problems.

Two other types of waste that have more recently been identified are:

• The waste of Not Being Used or Not Meeting the Customer’s Needs: This includes designs, products and reports that may be perfectly sound and functioning but do not meet the need defined by the customer.

• Waste of Not Utilizing Human Talent and Knowledge: Not asking for, involving, following up and/or implementing the ideas and suggestions of employees is waste. The front-line workers are closest to the action and see more problems than managers may ever identify. Waste results when workers’ ideas are ignored. Waste happens when operations supervision is not involved in reviewing design drawings for manufacturability. Waste also occurs when lessons learned and best practices are not shared or replicated from one project or work team to another or across the company.

The Japanese call waste “Muda,” an ugly sounding word in English and Japanese. Lean champions are waste-busters.

Q: Why do Lean?

A: Companies implementing Lean have seen improvements in the following areas:

• Manufacturing Lead Time - less than 1 day

• Delivered Quality – 3 PPM (Parts Per Million so 3 PPM means three defective parts in a million parts - this is operating at a Six SIGMA level)

• Delivery Performance – 99+%

• Inventory Turns – Greater than 50 turns per year

• Conversion Costs (materials to finished goods) - 25 – 40% less than mass producers

• Manufacturing space - reduced 35 – 50% less than mass producers

• New product development – less than 6 months

(Source: Henderson, Bruce A. and Larco, Jeorge L. Lean Transformation)

Q: What does Lean look like?

A: While the application of Lean would vary for each organization, here are some basic characteristics:

• Fast, uninterrupted flow of work

• Elimination of waste

• Flexible planning process effective responding to changes

• Design process supports the “Pull”

• Low inventories and no stashes of materials

• Frequent replenishment of materials

• Safe work environments

• Empowered and engaged workers

• Organized plants, shops and offices

• Rapid response to problems

• Employees understand and live the purpose for the company

Q: Where did Lean come from?

A: The Lean principles and techniques were mostly developed and refined by Toyota and are sometimes called Kaizen or the Toyota Production System (TPS). Most leaders give Toyota’s Taiichi Ohno the credit for developing the Lean approach. Some have credited mistakenly Fredrick Taylor. While Fredrick Taylor is credited with the principles of Scientific Management, Taiichi Ohno gives Henry Ford credit for the initial ideas of Lean. Ford did not want to be associated with Taylor’s works. Their ideas are very different. Taylor taught that there is one right way to do each job - say shovel dirt and that the worker should do it that way and nothing else. In Taylor’s world, the worker was not to think or try new ways. Ford would determine the right place to put the dirt first. Ford and subsequently Ohno encouraged workers to be involved in finding efficiencies.

The Lean approach grew out of many years of trial and testing to continuously improve methods and results. Ideas and techniques still are being refined and advanced. Regardless of its origin, American and international manufacturers have embraced Lean and achieved remarkable results.

Peter Drucker, the father of modern-day management thinking said:

“What has changed Manufacturing, and sharply pushed up productivity, are new concepts. Information and automation are less important than new theories of manufacturing, which are an advance comparable to the arrival of mass production 80 years ago. Indeed, some of these theories, such as Toyota’s “lean manufacturing”, do away with robots, computers and automation.” (Drucker, Peter. “The Economist,” page 12, November 3, 2001)

Q: Is Lean TQM or Six Sigma?

A: Lean or Lean Thinking is focusing on delivering value (as seen by the customer) and eliminating waste. Lean is not Total Quality Management (TQM) but is one approach of continuous improvement, which is an element of TQM. Lean is not Lean – Six Sigma. Six Sigma methods are used to solve problems that surfaced in Lean activities.

Q: Most recently, much is being said that American automobile manufacturers are still losing to Toyota even though they are doing Lean?

A: It took a long time for the big three Auto makers in the US to quit blaming trade barriers, difference in wages and unions on why they were losing market share to Japan. In the last ten years they have been very serious in applying Lean techniques to their operations. They have seen great success. But they have missed the point that Lean is more than techniques, it is a set of principles, a way of thinking and doing work. Lean has had a mixed bag of success around the world with other industries as well. The techniques do work and help improve a company’s processes but without the principles being understood and lived the success will not be sustained.

Q: What are these Lean Principles?

A: Different people have described them in many ways. I like how Jeffrey K. Liker describes them in his book The Toyota Way:

o Base management decisions on a long-term philosophy, even at the expense of short-term financial goals.

o Create continuous process flow to bring problems to the surface.

o Use “pull” systems to avoid overproduction.

o Level out the workload.

o Build a culture of stopping to fix problems, to get quality right the first time.

o Standardize tasks.

o Use visual control so no problems are hidden.

o Use only reliable, thoroughly tested technology that serves your people and processes.

o Grow leaders who thoroughly understand the work, live the philosophy, and teach it to others.

o Develop exceptional people and teams who follow your company’s philosophy.

o Respect your extended network of partners and suppliers by challenging them and helping them improve.

o Go and see for yourself to thoroughly understand the situation.

o Make decisions slowly by consensus, thoroughly considering all options; implement decisions rapidly.

o Become a learning organization through relentless reflections and continuous improvement (Kaizen).

Q: What are the tools and techniques of Lean?

A: Lean tools and techniques are still being developed to meet the intent of providing value and eliminating waste so a complete list is not possible. Here are the more proven ones:

5S’s: The 5S’s came from Toyota. The 5S’s are used to organize and visually control the workplace to eliminate waste. The 5S’s are Sorting, Simplifying, Sweeping, Standardizing and Self-Discipline.

Heijunk: Leveling the production over a set period of time.

Just-in-Time (JIT): A system for producing or delivering the right amount of parts or product at the time it is needed.

Kaizen Event: A quick-hit method for Lean process improvement. It typically consists of several days of intense training combined with immediate application of the concepts just taught to identify and eliminate waste in a specific work area.

Kanban: Japanese term meaning “a signboard.” A communication tool used in JIT production systems. The signal tells workers to pull parts or refill material to a certain quantity used in production.

Last Planner System (LPS): The Last Planner System is a Lean tool developed by the Lean Construction Institute and is a Lean application to project management. The LPS approach routinely gets better results than traditional project management – 30% better as a median (Koskela, Lauri and Howell, Greg, “The Theory of Project Management: Explanation of Novel Methods, Proceedings IGLC – 10, Aug. 2002. Gramado, Brazil.).

Poka-Yoke: A mistake-proofing method or device developed by Shigeo Shingo that is used to prevent an error or defect from happening or being passed on to the next operation.

Root-Cause Analysis: A systematic method of analyzing possible causes to determine the root cause of a problem.

Rules of Release: Lean concentrates on the hand-offs between operations. Rules of Release are established to ensure the hand-offs are done right the first time.

Set up Time Reduction: A process of changing production machines and equipment to run a different part. Sometimes called Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED). ‘Single minute’ is in reference to the target of reducing the times to a single digit (less that 10 minutes).

Spaghetti Chart: A physical map of the work area that shows the path taken by the specific product or a person being observed. A line is drawn from start to end indicating the path moved by the product or person.

Standards: The set defined way to do the job. As used in this context it is assumed to be the best way to do the job or task.

Total Preventive Maintenance: (TMP): Pioneered by Nippondenso, a member of the Toyota team that developed many of the Lean techniques, TMP is a set of methods used to ensure production equipment is always working properly and does not stop production. Many manufacturing companies have applied TMP with great success, but this research did not find any applications in construction.

Takt Time: The time required to produce a piece of product ordered by the customer that is calculated by dividing the total production time by the number of units ordered. Takt is the German word for musical meter and the takt time is the drumbeat of production.

Value Stream Mapping: Includes all the processes, activities and information used to design, produce and deliver the product or service to the customer. A special value stream flowchart is developed to identify all the activities, operations, steps and work times for a process. Steps are classified into value added and non-value added.

Visual Control: Sometimes called transparency, visual control is the displaying of tools, schedules and performance reports in full view of front-line workers so everyone can see the status of work and their unit’s performance. Visual control also includes marking the locations of equipment, tools, inventory parts, disposal cans, cabinets, etc., so that everyone knows where everything belongs. Using visual control helps eliminate waste and is a valuable part of any 5S’s effort

Q: Does it really matter if I do Lean?

A: In industry after industry, the companies who have applied Lean correctly become and stay the industry leaders. The rest become second-string players or go out of business. This is being played out in the auto industry right before our eyes. How many plants can Ford or GM close down before they cease to be in the automobile manufacturing business? One does not have to do Lean or make any improvement efforts. As Dr. Deming said “Survival is not mandatory!”

Q: Where can I learn more about Lean?

A: Good Web sites are

o Lean Construction:

o Lean

o Learning about

o Lean Ideas on the Web

o Poke Yoke

Books & Articles:

o The Gold Mine by Freddy Valle and Michael Balle, Lean Enterprise Institute, 2005

o Lean Production Principles by Dennis Sowards, New Horizons Foundation, 2004

o Lean Thinking by James P. Womack and Daniel T. Jones, Simon & Schuster, New York, NY 1996.

o Lean Solutions by James P. Womack and Daniel T. Jones, Free Press,

o 5 Pillars of the Visual Workplace by Hiroyuki Hirano, Productivity, Inc. Portland, OR, (1-800-394-6868)

o Gemba Kaizen, by Masaaki Imai, McGraw-Hill, New York, NY, 1997

o All I need to Know about Manufacturing I Learned in Joe’s Garage by William B. Miller and Vicki L. Schenik, Bayrock Press, 2000. (208-376-2266)

o Lean Transformation by Bruce A. Henderson & Jorge L. Larco, The Oaklea Press, Richmond, VA, 1999.

o The Toyota Way by Jeffrey K. Liker, McGraw-Hill, 2004.

Some articles I have written include:

Waste is Everywhere but isn’t Inevitable. Part 1 Contractor Magazine - Dec. 2005, Part 2 - Jan. 2006

Lean Production Principles - New Horizon Foundation, 2004

Is Inventory the root of all evil? - Contractor Magazine - Sept. 2004

• 5S’s that would make any CEO Happy Contractor Magazine - June 2004

Lean is a powerful approach to improving but must be done with an improvement culture already in place. Just doing some of the tools of Lean is much like companies who tried to do some aspects of TQM. They really did PQM or Partial Quality Management and failed.


The Chinese are Coming? The Chinese are Coming!
Last Word
By Scott M. Paton

Wake up and smell the green tea, corporate America.

"The regulars are coming! The regulars are coming!" Those are the famous words Paul Revere yelled as he rode through the Massachusetts countryside on April 18, 1775, warning the colonists that 800 British troops (or regulars) were headed their way to capture arms and ammunition the colonists had hidden in Concord.

Why the history lesson? Simple, as George Santayana said, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." Yet, repeat it corporate America does - over and over again.

Paul Revere looked to the Old North Church to see how many lamps the sexton had hung to tell him if the British were coming by land or by sea.

Another invasion has begun, this time by land, air and sea. And this time, we need more than two lanterns; we need to slap some sense into senior management.

The Japanese "invaded" the U.S. market during the 1970s and 1980s with high-quality, low-cost electronics and automobiles. We spent 20 years watching market share plunge and entire industries disappear in this country. Want to buy a U.S. - made television, videocassette recorder, DVD player? Forget it. Manufacturing first moved to Japan, then South Korea, and finally to places like Thailand, Malaysia, and eventually, China.

We reacted with quality circles, TQM, reengineering and the like. Quality improved dramatically, design somewhat. We survived the invasion despite huge losses of market share in electronics and automobiles. We accepted our fate without too much protest. After all, we were still the unquestioned world leaders in high tech, aerospace, pharmaceuticals, and intellectual capital. Japan's gain was really nothing more than a much-needed economic shift.

After we had come to terms with the Japanese, the South Koreans invaded. It didn't seem so bad. Again, just a natural progression, except this time in addition to cars and electronics, the Koreans were selling appliances - things like refrigerators, washers and dryers. This helped to further erode the U.S. manufacturing base.

Now a third invasion has begun, this time by the Chinese. It's no secret that most toys and electronics are made in China, but it may surprise you to learn that China is exporting hundreds of billions of dollars worth of auto parts, furniture and appliances to the United States. A Chinese company, Lenovo, recently purchased IBM's PC business. The first Chinese-made car will hit the U.S. shores in 2007 when China's Chery Automobile Co. begins shipping the first of an estimated 250,000 vehicles annually to the United States. Chery promises to undercut existing auto prices by 30 percent or more. Others are sure to follow.

When China began to flex its economic muscle a few years ago, I wasn't too bothered by it. After all, the Chinese had suffered under Communist rule for so long it seemed natural to welcome them to the world economic stage. It actually felt good to see their success. When I traveled to Shanghai last year, I was amazed at what a modern, capitalist society China had become. Despite whatever problems the Chinese may have with their government the Chinese people have embraced capitalism with unbridled enthusiasm.

I also took comfort in the many U.S. companies present in China: General Motors, IBM, Ford, Coca-Cola, and on and on. Of course, the Japanese, Germans, Koreans and other multinationals are there, too. I reasoned that while some U.S. jobs may be lost to Chinese workers, it was at the hands of U.S. companies. Bad for the U.S. employees, but good for U.S. stockholders.

Chinese companies are beginning to sell in greater numbers to the U.S. market, enriching Chinese companies instead of U.S. stockholders. Some argue that it's simply China's low wages and appalling working conditions that give it the edge. Some say its China's superior work ethic. China leads the world in the number of ISO9001 registrations. Leading Chinese companies have embraced and implemented Six Sigma techniques. Its work force is highly educated and hungry to experience the high living standards of the West.

Their success may have been partly built on low wages, but intelligence and hard work will help them continue and move forward. For example, Japan's workers are now some of the worlds highest paid.

I've got nothing against the Chinese. They are a warm, friendly people with much to offer the world. In fact, my wife and I are in the process of adopting a Chinese girl. However, I'm deeply troubled by corporate America's ignorance of the Chinese. We are as unprepared for the Chinese invasion as we were for the Japanese one 30 years ago.

It's not too late to protect our markets, and the answer isn't tariffs or layoffs. The answer lies in designing and building innovative, high-quality products (and services) U.S. consumers want to buy. The first step is knowledge.


Reprinted with permission of the author. Originally appeared in Quality Digest, February 2005, p. 72.



Build a set of values and act upon them.
By H. James Harrington


Corporate values can be defined as an organization's deeply ingrained operating rules or guiding princi-ples. I like to call them "The Stakeholders' Bill of Rights." Some people might see them as specific cultural attributes that drive behavior. Winning organizations set out to create a specific culture and operating style based on their values.

For example, Owens Corning uses guiding principles in place of values. Their guiding principles are:

• Customers are the focus of everything we do.
• People are the source of our competitive strength.
• Involvement and teamwork is our method of operation.
• Continuous improvement is essential to our success.
• Open, two-way communication is essential to the improvement process and our mission.
• Suppliers are team members.
• Profitability is the ultimate measure of our efficiency in serving our customers' needs.

Values, basic beliefs, guiding principles or operating rules—call them what you will. The important thing is to define and live up to them because they're the fundamentals upon which an organization should be built.

In contrast, losing organizations usually don't have explicit values. Instead, they'll have "hollow" values, or perfectly stated values that only few within the company operate by.

It's extremely important that everyone knows, understands and lives up to his or her organization's values.

It's an essential starting point. All managers have an obligation to model their activities so that they reinforce these values. Managers who can't believe and live up to them have no right to be managers in their organizations. They really have only two options:

  1. Get the organization's values changed.
  2. Get out of management.

An individual manager may slip up once in a while and not live up to all of the organization's values, but this is an area where Six Sigma error rates are too high.

Also, each individual—especially managers at all levels—should have a personal, documented set of value statements. It's very important that there's no conflict between the individual manager's values and the organization's values. Any manager whose personal values are not aligned with the organizations will be faced with a life of hardship, disappointment and failure.

When I started my business career, my father, Frank Harrington, shared his personal value statements with me and recommended that I adopt the same set. I agreed and still find them good objectives around which to build my life. I suggest that you, as quality individuals, prepare your own value statements and do everything you can to live up to them. To help you get started, I'll share my values with you. They were created originally by Dr. J. L. Rosenstein and modified to meet my personal beliefs.

The man I want to be:

I want to be someone:

• Who is concerned with how he can help others instead of himself, who offers loyalty instead of demanding it, who thinks of himself as an assistant instead of a boss and who thinks it's his job to help others do their jobs better.

• Whose pride is peculiar because it's in his people, who walks around the organization and says: "Yes, it was well done but not by me. I just happen to be lucky enough to have the best team in the whole organization." If something goes wrong, he feels that maybe he wasn't on the ball. Maybe he didn't direct, guide, teach or lead his team properly. He takes the blame for anything that goes wrong.

• Who never makes a promise he doesn't intend to keep; a man who would say: "Let's not wait until tomorrow when it's more convenient for me. Let's sit down right now and go at it. Now is the time."

• Who can get excited about others' ideas and respect them no matter how simplistic they might seem—someone who can pick others up and en-courage them when their ideas are rejected.

• Who can handle every grievance right now, unlike the fellow with a 40-room mansion but no garbage pails who says, "We just kick it around until it gets lost."

• Who can respect others but also discipline them if they get out of line—someone who will fight for others every step of the way, even up to the company's president and chairman of the board, if necessary, to see that they get a fair shake and a square break.

I will admit that I have not always lived up to all of these values, but I have tried and I continue trying to meet these high standards.

About the author

H. James Harrington is CEO of the Harrington Institute Inc., and chairman of the board of four other companies. He has more than 45 years of experience as a quality professional and is the author of 22 books. Visit his Web site at


Reprinted with permission of the author. Originally appeared in Quality Digest, September 2003, p. 16.



  • Many more "Tips for New Employee Integration".
  • Future tips from "Our School for Managers" will include topics in coaching, goal setting, time management, communication, delegation, and others.
  • Examples and success stories from users of the "RxSales: An Expert Performance System"
  • Additional Products and service on implementation of Lean


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