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3 Things Stopping Your Advancement to Operation X

September 14, 2017

"Early leaks of new designs had stirred anticipation for Apple's new smartphone — and on Tuesday Apple delivered on all the predictions with a $699 iPhone 8 and a $999 special-edition iPhone X (as in '10')," writes Alina Selyukh in their recent NPR article entitled "Apple Unveils Three New iPhones, But The Watch Sends Shares Up."

Selyukh continues that "The 10th-anniversary iPhone is the biggest redesign in years, with an all-screen front that eliminates the home button and can use facial recognition to unlock the display."

That's not all either.

According to the NPR article, "CEO Tim Cook says that the Apple Watch has now become 'the No. 1' watch in the world — beating even traditional watchmakers like Rolex."

iPhone X.

No. 1 watch in the world.

Apple doesn't rest on its laurels, does it? Then, why should you?

Question: Do you believe your operation has made its latest iteration to "Operation X?"

If not, what's inhibiting you? We think we know.

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Sometimes You Need to Shift Focus (Again)

June 22, 2017

“The next-generation Ford Focus will be built in China and exported for sale in the U.S., Ford Motor Co. said Tuesday, abandoning a plan to build the small car in Mexico. Production of the new car is scheduled to begin in 2019,” writes Bill Chappell in their recent NPR article entitled “Ford Shifts Focus (Again): Car Will Be Imported To U.S. From China, Not Mexico.”

According to Chappell, “Ford says the move will save it $1 billion in investment costs and will make it "a more operationally fit company." It also promises that "no U.S. hourly employees will be out of a job" because of the move to China.”

A more operationally fit company? Now, we’re interested in this recent development.

“Ford is coming off a record year in China, having sold 1.27 million vehicles there in 2016 — a 14 percent gain over 2015. That figure includes vehicles made in China by Ford's joint ventures, as well as Ford and Lincoln imports. When it opened its sixth assembly plant in China back in 2015, Ford said it could build 1.4 million vehicles a year in the country,” the article continues.

The NPR piece continues that “For Mexico, this is the second dramatic shift from Ford in 2017. The new Focus originally was to be built in the central state of San Luis Potosi, but the company canceled construction of a $1.6 billion plant there in January.”

“Back in November, Ford's then-CEO Mark Fields said the company would move forward with a plan to build the Focus in Mexico. But under new CEO Jim Hackett, that plan has changed again,” Chappell explains.

Ford, being a large corporation, got our attention with this shift.

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Do You Really Want a Mistake of Epic Proportions Driving Change?

May 04, 2017

According to a recent NPR article entitled 'It Was A Mistake Of Epic Proportions,' United CEO Testifies and written by Camila Domonoske & David Schaper, the CEO of United Airlines was “in the hot seat on Capitol Hill” Tuesday morning.

The NPR article states that CEO Oscar Munoz was “answering pointed questions from members of Congress about last month's incident in which a United passenger was dragged off a plane.”

"’It was a mistake of epic proportions,’ United CEO Oscar Munoz told representatives, as he explained how United has changed its rules moving forward. ‘In hindsight, clearly our policies broke down," explains Munoz in the article.

We agree with both statements. But, did this “mistake of epic proportions” or the ‘policy breakdown’ need to happen?

No - which is why many other airlines were questioned.

Domonoske and Schaper’s article explains that “executives from other airlines” were present as well during the examination.

Their report says that Congress scrutinized “customer service problems across the commercial aviation industry and considers legislation to better protect airline passengers.”

Why does it always take a devastating incident to drive change? Why don’t you regularly review your processes to avoid potential breakdowns altogether?

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How to Push Your Team to Embrace Proactive Operations

April 20, 2017

“Kevin Butt's job is to find cleaner ways to power Toyota. One of the hardest places to do that is at the automaker's sprawling plant in central Kentucky, a state where nearly 90 percent of electricity still comes from coal,” writes Jennifer Ludden in her recent NPR article entitled “Big Business Pushes Coal-Friendly Kentucky To Embrace Renewables.”

According to Ludden’s piece, “Butt points out a new engine assembly line, where a conveyor belt moves in a slow circle. He says it was specially designed with a more efficient motor. There are also enormous fans overhead and LED lights, all changes that save millions.”

"I mean, what company doesn't want to reduce their energy bill," he says in the article.

We couldn’t agree more.

It’s critical for an organization to streamline costs and “reduce their energy bill.”

But, we’re focused on the principle of improvement at a higher level. We’re looking at the Meta problem, which is being a reactive operation.

Ludden’s article and the efforts of Kevin Butt offer great insight into the need for a different way of doing that helps not only your business – but the customers you serve.

Do you agree?

Even in a state where 90% of the electricity comes from coal, trailblazers like Butt are challenging the current situation (or status quo) to improve their business.

They’re also helping to “clear the air” for future generations.

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A Lesson in Change From the Atlanta Hawks You Need to Know

November 17, 2016

According to Matt Kempner’s recent AthleticBusiness article, “Boosted by Mayor Kasim Reed's promise to kick in three-fourths of the upfront cost, leaders of the Atlanta Hawks are planning a $192.5 million renovation of Philips Arena aimed at wooing more young adults.”

In a statement made in the article, Hawks CEO Steve Koonin explains that “this will be the first arena designed for a millennial audience.”

What does he mean? Why are Koonin and his team spending millions to change Philips?

As we dove into the article further, we recognized why. We immediately understood and applaud the decisions made by the Hawks to make changes to their current arena.

They’ve accepted the need for change. The Hawks believe that change will help the organization achieve greater success down the road.

Koonin has a goal to be “a top-tier” arena, and he feels like they just aren’t there, yet. So, the Hawks see what’s holding the organization back, and they’re going for it and making the changes.

According to Koonin, the arena was “designed in the '90s, and I think a lot of the pieces are antiquated. It is not a top-tier arena, which makes it tough to capture the best fan experience."

This fact could be a hard pill to swallow for any organization and their executive team. But, it’s commendable nonetheless to see the Hawks conceding to their weaknesses.

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