Update From Asia
Things are going well in Asia. We completed the first week of Sigma Tool Facilitator
training last week and completed Mistake Proofing Tool Facilitator training
the week before last. We'll be completing the CI Action Team planning sessions
this month. Finally, we'll complete Sigma Tool Facilitator training during the
first two weeks of October (with only one day off between the two weeks to cool
the brain cells) after which we will launch the plans for FY 04.
We've been having some good events that were led by the newly-trained toll
facilitators. One was a Kaizen event in Cikarang, Indonesia which resulted in
a 10% capacity increase and over $100,000 annual savings for the cylinder fill
plant there. We had a Workplace Organization and Visual Controls event in Singapore,
led by the Singapore tool facilitator, which yielded $75,000 hard savings.
Since May 23rd we've had six events and have completed tool facilitator training
in Facilitator Basics, WOVC, Kaizen, Mistake Proofing and week one of Sigma.
We completed the Continuous Improvement (CI) Leadership Team annual plans for
the entire region. And we have presented about six one-day CI Introduction workshops
(Buzz Electronics). The whole Asia CI team was in Jakarta two days before a
terrorist bombing nearly leveled the Marriott hotel there - and were in Central
Java (a terrorist hot spot) when the bombing took place. Despite the tough schedule,
the new CI team here has been holding up well and their spirits are high.
There has been a high level of interest and have been numerous requests for
events throughout the region. My approach now is to have the CI Action teams
evaluate all the requests and put together their annual plans (during September)
- prioritizing events based on their potential benefits and alignment with the
high-level targets. By the time they have their plans in place, the tool facilitators,
organization champions and CI managers will be trained and ready to implement
It's been quite a trip! From May 23 to mid-August I spent four days in Hong
Kong (my home away from home) - the rest of the time was on the "road"
- including weekends and holidays. From now through October 10th all of the
training and planning meetings will be in Hong Kong (with one exception - a
three day planning meeting in Taipei). So, at least I'll be able to be at "home"
Well, that's it for now. Take care...
Mark R. Reed is a regional continuous improvement manager for a Fortune
200 company in the industrial gases and specialty chemicals industry. He has
been implementing Kaizen since 1999 and has conducted Kaizen events in the U.S.,
the Middle East, and throughout Asia. He is a certified leader and has led training
for workplace organization and visual controls, quick change, mistake proofing
and team facilitation skills. He is currently leading the implementation of
continuous improvement (providing training and leading demonstration events
in team facilitation skills, Kaizen, workplace organization and visual controls,
quick change, mistake proofing, demand flow technology, and six sigma) for the
Asian segment of his company's global business.