Tag Archive: management

Despite what everyone seems to be saying, lack of ‘resources’ is almost never the actual constraint.

Your real constraints are:

  • Lack of Creativity
  • Lack of Imagination
  • Blind Acceptance of Inefficient Processes
  • Lack of Focus
  • Poor Planning
  • Lack of Direction
  • Lack of the RIGHT People
  • …and the list goes on.

The truth is, ‘Lack of Resources’ is an excuse. It is a rug under which we sweep the dirt of inefficiencies, incompetencies, and poor processes. Heck, I’d even go so far as to say that we use the excuse of ‘Lack of Resources’ to foster, support, and encourage our bad habits.

Sure, getting more people is easy, but doing the right thing (and attacking the items in my list above) has the higher payoff in the long run.

…and I think this is one of the biggest causes of the great division between Employees and Management.

If you’re having back problems, you wouldn’t buy more of the chairs that you already have, so why, when projects are running behind schedule, do we require more meetings (which detract from productive time) or try to throw more people (outsiders to the current project) at the problem (which require the project ‘insiders’ to slow their work to catch their new counterparts up on the tasks at hand)?

Again, I defer to the law of extremes:
-if you threw a million people at your problem would it go away? Most likely not. You would have a smaller, core group working and a much larger group just standing around.
-but, if you put someone who was extremely talented on the job, how would your job look? It would most likely be completed in a timely manner and to a high degree of quality.

So, which will you choose?

Finding quality people and making more productive meetings is hard, but the dividends pay off in the long run.

Parking on the Grass

I firmly believe that people are naturally innovative – especially when they’ve been doing something for a long time (long enough to become habitual).

For example, why do manufacturing engineers insist that they can dictate how to properly assemble a device better than the folks who assemble said device day-in and day-out? Sure, the engineers have a better grasp on the technical aspects (e.g. which torque values are optimal), but they lack much of the common sense aspects (You can’t put this part on there yet, because this part gets in the way, etc…).

…by the way, I was once in this role, so I can vouch for the validity of the previous statements.

In the same sense, it seems like we waste an awful lot of  time yelling at folks for doing things differently, but we seldom question the reason for them doing something in the first place.

“Stop parking on the grass!!!”

Well…why are they parking on the grass in the first place? Are there too few parking spaces left in the lot? Or, perhaps, did folks just find a better place to park? Would we benefit from making that section of grass into a legitimate paved parking spot instead of just yelling?