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Maset News

Volume 14  May 28, 2002

Message From Charles Loew
Comments From Our Readers
New On The Maset Web Site
Helpful Hints from fellow Practitioners
New Truths on Quality
Top Ten List
Feature Of This Issue


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




This issue of the MASET NEWS will emphasize a very powerful tool that can be used to reduce the Cycle Time in any process that you have in your business. The tool is called Cross Functional Process Mapping and has been used successfully by many of the Maset consultants over the past eighteen years. Many success stories and articles have been written about the implementation of CFPM, some of which can be found on our web page under

This process has been used across the world, including the United States, Europe, India, Australia, Indonesia and China. Savings have run as high as $20,000,000 per mapping. Please contact us if you have any interest in learning more about this effective method of reducing time, reducing cost, increasing Customer Satisfaction and empowering your associates.

I have just returned from a swing through the Middle East. I visited Lebanon, Jordan and Bahrain. The purpose of the trip was to give some seminars and to obtain some additional business. The trip was very enjoyable and I met many interesting and wonderful people.

A number of startling facts that I would like to pass on to you for your consideration:

The people I met like Americans.

The people I met want to see peace in the Israel - Palestine conflict.

It is expected that the United States, as the World Leader, should use its influence to help create a lasting peace in the area.

All the countries I visited condemned the actions of the terrorists on Sept. 11, 2001.

All the countries I visited were very safe and I felt very comfortable at all times.

There are many wonderful sights and things available for tourists to see and do. The food is fantastic.

My point in all of this is that the majority of people around the world feel the way we do and share the same hopes and dreams we do. We must not let a few "nuts" poison our minds and hearts.




  • "Just read the latest newsletter and tried the .PDF file. I printed the newsletter and then read it on the way back from Maryland. Everything worked! I am impressed with the way your newsletter looks, reads, and informs people. I even cut out the telephone tips and put them on my desktop!!"

  • "I was reading MASET news and I take the opportunity to tell you that this letter is very useful for me as I am working as -part time- consultant. It keeps me linked with a community of multinational consultants and advanced thinking."
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  • Welcome to Don Anderson as a Maset associate. Don has recently retired from Motorola and brings expertise in Training and Management areas.

  • Jack O'Mara joins us after 42 years with Citibank/Citigroup. He was an original member of the Corporate Quality Office as they began implementing Six Sigma and Cycle Time Reduction.

  • Welcome to Jeanne Schulze a new associate of Maset with expertise in Organizational Systems Design and implementation as well as many years of experience coaching Senior Executives.

  • A new training course for ISO Auditors and Lead Auditors has been added to the available Maset training.

  • A number of new Success Stories covering some of the Cross Functional Process Mappings have been added to the web page.
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  • In order to keep attention on a slide or point you wish everyone to look at, simply take the pointer you are using, place it vertically in front of you and stare at it. Then move the pointer to the desired area you wish everyone to look at, while maintaining your gaze on the pointer as you move it to the desired location. Everyone will follow your gaze.

  • Please send some of your helpful hints from the time you gave a presentation, taught a lesson or facilitated a meeting. We would love to publish them in this space. Send them to
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  • Old Truth
    Improving Quality Takes Time.

  • New Truth
    Quality Doesn't Take Time, It Saves It.
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    Key learnings - Empowerment

    1.   Empowerment must be claimed by the empowered, it cannot be given.

    2.   An organization sets up the cultural expectations to allow or deny empowerment.

    3.   Empowerment requires honesty, integrity and accountability by the empowered.

    4.   Well established boundaries are essential to encouraging and developing empowerment

    5.   There are some decisions where empowerment is not appropriate. These need to be made crystal clear, then by default other decisions are appropriate.

    6.   If an employee acts upon an empowered decision, and is then reversed or second-guessed by a superior, empowered decision-making will be rejected by employees quickly.

    7.   Frequent communication of empowered decisions made by employees rapidly spreads the message that empowerment is encouraged.

    8.   Empowerment is a behavioral attribute about a person's decision-making authority, nothing more, nothing less.

    9.   Avoid using the word 'empowerment' as much as possible. Overuse of the word gives the idea of a program rather than genuine effort to change behavior and may be resisted.

    10.   Once an employee force accepts a level of empowerment, it is very destructive to morale and productivity to withdraw that empowerment.





    Charles J. Loew

    A tool that has proven to be very powerful in reducing Cycle Time is called Cross Functional Process Mapping (CFPM). This unique methodology has delivered tremendous results whenever properly applied. Typical results achieved a range of from 50% to 95% cycle time reduction with an ROI of 2 to 10.

    The methodology used by Maset uses a cross-functional team that is composed of 75-85% of the people who are actually doing the work, with the remainder of the team coming from the management ranks. The team is responsible for taking that process as it is today and creating a new process that is far superior, eliminating non-value-added steps, streamlining the process, and creating a better working environment resulting in major cost savings to the organization and significantly improving Customer Satisfaction.

    There are many reasons why an organization should embark on cross-functional process mapping to reduce cycle time.

    The first reason is to increase Customer Satisfaction. Every organization, regardless of who its customers are, must continuously increase Customer Satisfaction in order to retain the loyalty of the customers. There are many organizations that are trying to take your customers away and they will try to use every means in the book, including dramatically undercutting your prices in order to increase their market share at the expense of yours. Your customer is the lifeblood of a long-term successful organization, therefore it is imperative that you are continuously improving Customer Satisfaction. In addition, by gaining a reputation of providing excellent Customer Satisfaction you will gain long-term customers from your competitors. The loyalty of your customers will overcome many fly-by-night offers by competitors.

    The second reason to use CFPM is to remove all of the non-value-added steps in a process. In many organizations the processes were established 10 to 50 years ago and no one has ever re-looked at the complete process to develop a more effective process.

    The third reason to apply CFPM to your process is to improve the quality of the product and services that you deliver to your customers. There is a direct correlation between reduction of defects and reduction of steps within a process. So by removing all of the non-value-added steps, you reduce defects thereby significantly increasing the quality of the process, the product, and the services delivered by that process.

    The fourth reason to engage in CFPM is to rebalance the manpower required by the process. We have found that in many parts of the process there is a severe shortage of people, while in other parts of the same process there are too many people performing many non-value-added steps. This results in significant employee dissatisfaction and poor morale. By using this technique, you can redefine the steps in the process, eliminate the non-value-added steps, and thereby greatly increase the effectiveness of the process. This also allows you to increase output without additional people.

    All of the reasons mentioned as well as many others will result in major cost savings. By reducing non-value-added steps, by increasing quality and reducing rework costs, by reducing manpower required or by increasing throughput in the process, the net results will immediately drop to the bottom line.

    Many projects from around the world have saved 50% to 98% of the cycle time involved. Some of the more common processes to which organizations apply the cross-functional process mapping tools include: order-to-cash, new product development, manufacturing, and employee acquisition. Other processes that are looked at include supply chain management, administrative/financial processes, HR processes, setting of standards, preparing proposals and documents for submission to people who will evaluate these documents. Many of the successes that Maset has achieved in the areas of cross-functional process mapping and cycle-time reduction are documented on the Maset WEB page at

    The documented savings on specific cycle-time reduction projects is available for your review and our customers are willing to talk with you about their successes.

    For more information, please look at our WEB page under Cycle-Time Reduction and under success stories using the key words Cycle-Time Reduction at




    by Jeffrey J. Mayer

    The lion is the most powerful animal in the jungle. It can do almost anything it pleases.

    But what is the lion's favorite food? Antelope, zebra, wild beasts and other large animals.

    There are lots of animals a lion could eat: mice, snakes, lizards, small animals, and birds. However, the lion knows that these animals don't offer a large enough reward for the time, effort, and energy expended to hunt and capture them.

    If a lion tried to subsist on a diet of mice, it would slowly starve itself to death.

    Lions hunt in prides, and the members work together in teams, so that after a successful hunt, there is enough food for everybody. Food for the hunters, food for the young cubs, and food for the members of the pride that are too old to hunt.

    Paul thinks of himself as a lion. The king of the jungle. The alpha male. He's bright, sharp and talented. He knows his business inside and out.

    He has only one problem: He is not making the kind of money he knows he's capable of making.

    He puts in lots of hours, comes in early, stays late, works weekends, but never seems to get ahead. He called me one day and asked for help.

    Once we started working together, it became apparent as to the reasons why. He was running his business - and managing his time - as if he were hunting mice, instead of hunting antelope.

    Paul spends his days doing things that kept him busy, instead of doing things that make him productive and move him closer to achieving his goals.

    Each day he arrives bright and early at the office. He sits down at his desk, and begins reading - and replying to - his e-mail. He then writes some letters, works on proposals, and makes some phone calls.

    Then the phone begins to ring, FedEx and snail mail arrives, his colleagues and coworkers walk into his office and ask him questions, and by the end of the day, he hasn't accomplished very much. He's tired, stressed out, and frustrated.

    Paul spends his days hunting mice, not antelope.

    Paul didn't have a plan or strategy for managing - and taking control - of his day, for setting his priorities, for staying focused.

    Yes, he was busy. But hardly productive.

    If you want to learn how to get more work done, in less time and with less effort, you should get a copy of my new eBook "Taking Control of Your Day." Here's the link to order and download it:

    If you're tired of hunting for mice, here are six things you can do that will help you to capture antelope:

    1. Create A Master List

    A Master List is a detailed things-to-do list. A list of everything that you need to do. You can keep your Master List on a pad of paper, inside your contact manager like ACT, or in Outlook or your Palm.

    By writing down all of your tasks on your Master List, you've a complete inventory of everything that needs to be done. Nothing slips through the cracks because it's meticulously noted on your Master List.

    2. Review Your Master List Throughout The Day

    Look at your Master List throughout the day and ask yourself, "What is the most important thing I must work on now?" Then do it!

    3. Review Your Master List Before You Go Home At The End Of The Day

    Your Master List becomes your #1 planning tool. You review it before you go home at the end of the day to determine what are the most important things you must do tomorrow, and to begin planning for the tasks that will need to be completed in the days ahead.

    4. Start Early While You've Plenty Of Lead Time

    It's not enough that you've 'identified' the things that need to be done. You need to start - and complete - them.

    The best way to insure that you'll get your work done on time is to start on the project while you've plenty of lead-time. The goal isn't just to complete the work, but to deliver your BEST work.

    Your goal isn't just to make a presentation, but to get the customer to say YES, and close the sale!

    5. Schedule An Appointment With Yourself

    When you've important work that needs to be done, schedule an appointment with yourself. Block it out on your calendar. Think of the appointment with your most important client, because it is.

    Once you begin working on the task, don't allow yourself to be interrupted. Don't accept telephone calls. Don't check e-mail. Don't answer questions from your colleagues and co-workers.

    6. Use Your Prime Time

    We all have a time of day we do our best work. When are you most productive? Morning? Afternoon? Late in the day?

    Schedule your appointments with yourself at the time you're at your best.

    Paul started implementing these six strategies into his daily activities and his productivity soared. He's now getting the important things done every day. He's much more focused. He knows what he wants to accomplish - and he's succeeding.

    Reprinted with permission from Jeffrey Mayer's "Succeeding In Business Newsletter". (Copyright, 2002, Jeffrey J. Mayer, Succeeding In Business, Inc.) To subscribe to Jeff's free newsletter, visit"




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