Sep 1 2015
Managers’ near universal reaction to the challenge of improvement is that their own operations are already run as effectively and efficiently as possible, given external constraints, including fickle customers, unreliable suppliers, local labor laws, worn-out equipment, a rickety transportation infrastructure, and the weather. The internal problems are so puny compared to the external ones that it would be futile to address them. Who cares about doubling operator productivity when labor costs are 5% of the cost of goods sold? Why should we reduce production lead times to one day when component purchasing lead times are four months?