Posts Tagged ‘Cycle Time Reduction’

The Stanford marshmallow experiment was a study on deferred gratification. The experiment was conducted in 1972 by psychologist Walter Mischel of Stanford University. In the study, a marshmallow was offered to each child. If the child could resist eating the marshmallow, he was promised two instead of one. The scientists analyzed how long each child resisted the temptation of eating the marshmallow, and whether or not doing so had an effect on their future success.

The purpose of the original study was to understand when the control of deferred gratification, the ability to wait in order to obtain something that one wants, develops in children. The experiment took place using children around the age of four to six as subjects. The children were led into a room, empty of distractions, where a treat of their choice (Oreo cookie, marshmallow, or pretzel stick) was placed on a table, by a chair. The children could eat the marshmallow, the researchers said, but if they waited for fifteen minutes without giving in to the temptation, they would be rewarded with a second marshmallow.

While a few children would eat the marshmallow immediately, only one third of the children could defer gratification long enough to get the second marshmallow.  Deferred gratification, self control and self-discipline are essential attributes for success.    

What are the marshmallows in your life?  What are your dreams and goals? What are the things in your life that are worth waiting for?

What things seem to tempt you most? What things have derailed you from achieving your goal? What things have you wished you would have waited for?

I wonder what the results of the test might have been if the subjects had a coach in their corner. Someone to encourage…Someone to hold them accountable….Someone to keep them focused on task…..Come on, you can do it!  Only a couple more minutes…It will be worth it…you can do it….Stay away from the temptation….Remember, the ROI!  Stay the course…hold it steady…

Got a coach?  Get one!  A performance coach can help you bring people and process into alignment with strategy and help you develop the leadership potential within your organization.  Raising the leadership quotient in your organization leads to improved results.  Patrick Frazier, CBC, is the performance coach that can help you raise the bar and lift your team to greater heights.  The Coaching Authority is the place to go for help….which by the way, in the last 5 years, we have helped over 25 different companies in our community get quick results and build a long-term competitive advantage.  Don’t delay. Call Patrick Frazier at the Coaching Authority today!


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I didn’t think so…We also know of no company that has positioned themselves for long term success without managing their costs and productivity.


Business advisors may suggest that major hurdles are either financially or marketing driven. However, our experience indicates that chief obstacles in both these areas are driven by misalignment of core processes. This causes symptoms that become financial and look as though marketing may be involved, but the root cause may lie somewhere else.


The beauty to finding the solution is that there is no need to rush into a flavor of the month program. In fact this approach often has helped create the problem. What is required is an approach that is yours, is developed inside-out and is proven. When implemented properly this not only impacts profits, but also has positive effects upon customer and employee satisfaction, productivity, speed of new product introductions, and improved supplier relations. In a word, you become more competitive and more profitable.


The simple fact is that today, processes designed to fit “yesterday’s needs” can be bleeding companies by as much as 15% of their gross sales. If only a fraction of this erosion could be stopped and added to your bottom line what would that mean to you this year?


I’d like the opportunity to connect the previous paragraphs with your current business situation to see if our organization might become a resource for you.  You have absolutely nothing to lose and perhaps a whole bunch to gain. At worst we’ll both meet a good person.  Don’t Delay.  Call the Coaching Authority TODAY!


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A successful organization is one where all the parts are working together (are in alignment). These organizations are innovative, customer responsive, and prevent fires – they’re not spending their time putting out fires.

The diagram below provides a theoretical model that will allow management to understand the source of their problems and you can provide the solutions.

Start with the Strategy – What’s your game plan?

If you want to accomplish something that means you need to do something differently – that’s change. Has the organization defined success, where they want to go, what they want to accomplish?

Does your structure support that strategy? Many times when something isn’t working, organizations change their structure rather than  address the real problem.

Do your processes support your strategy? We look at the way the work flows: how much time to produce a product, waste measurement, etc. Again the key is alignment. If the strategy is low cost, quick turnaround, but the processes don’t support it, your strategy is dead.

Do your rewards and recognition systems support the strategy? For example, if the strategy is team based but you’re only rewarding individuals, the strategy’s dead.

Moving on to your people. Do they have the attitudes, skills, and knowledge to implement the strategy? Do you have the right people in the right places, doing the right things for the right reasons? Are they aligned with your strategy?

All of this feeds the heart of your business: your Loyal Customers and your Results. If all you are measuring is profits, how does that support creating loyal customers?

This is the most important piece – What are you measuring? If they are only measuring profitability, is that a good measurement?

Profit is the result of something – it’s the result of past decisions. Profit is a lagging indicator – not a forward indicator.

If you are only measuring profitability, then the affiliate knows that this organization has a problem. An organization cannot forecast their future only by looking at profit.

The other key is Leadership. Ask them how they would define the difference between Leadership and Management?

Leadership has to do with the future – innovation –where are they headed – determining what the right things to do are. Management’s role is to do the right things now.

Does the organization know what a healthy model of an organization looks like?

How does all the above impact your organization?  What does that look like, what does that do to the health of your organization, and your alignment?

So what do you look for?

  1. Structure: Turnover in 30 days, firing, high turnover, turf war, gridlock, fighting fires, silo mentality
  2. Process: Cycle time, re work, response time, gridlock, lead times, scrap, customer complaints
  3. Rewards & Recognition: internal competition, gridlock, and turf wars
  4. People: Low morale, communication, long meetings, productivity, and turnover
  5. Results: Lost targets, no focus, looking at past results to determine future growth, loyal employees, and loyal customers

Senior management builds trust by allowing employees to “fix” issues, which creates loyal employees.  If you see any of the above symptoms, THEN we need to talk.  I am very confident that I could help you and your organization focus, ALIGN and execute what needs to happen in order to achieve your success measures.

What if your organization had a competitive advantage? Say someone with years of experience and a proven track record for developing and implementing ideas leading to higher productivity, greater efficiency, noticeably improved morale, higher profits, and continued upward growth?  Sounds too good to be true, eh?

performance coach can help you bring people and process into alignment with strategy and help you develop the leadership potential within your organization.  Raising the leadership quotient in your organization leads to improved results.  Patrick Frazier, CBC, is the performance coach that can help you raise the bar and lift your team to greater heights.  The Coaching Authority is the place to go for help….which by the way, in the last 5 years, we have helped over 25 different companies in our community get quick results and build a long-term competitive advantage.  Don’t delay. Call Patrick Frazier at the Coaching Authority today!

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Start with a cage containing five apes.

In the cage, hang a banana on a string and put stairs under it.  Before long, an ape will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana.  As soon as he touches the stairs, spray all apes with cold water.

After a while, another ape makes an attempt with the same result – all the apes are sprayed with cold water.  This continues through several more attempts.  Pretty soon, when another ape tries to climb the stairs, the other apes all try to prevent it.

Now, turn off the cold water, Remove one ape from the cage and replace it with a new one.  The new ape sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs.  To his horror, all of the other apes attack him.  After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs he will be assaulted.

Next, remove another of the original five apes and replace it with a new one.  The new comer goes to the stairs and is attacked.  The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm.  Again, replace a third original ape with a new one.  The new on makes it to the stairs and is attacked as well.  Two of the four apes that beat him have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs, or why they are participating in the beating of the newest ape.

After replacing the fourth and fifth original apes, all the apes, which had been sprayed with cold water, have been replaced.  Nevertheless, no ape ever again approaches the stairs.  Why not?

Because that is the way they’ve always done it and that is the way it is always been around here.

And that is how company policy begins..

Remember. Bad processes kill good people – every day!.  Are you ready to stop monkeying around with bad company policy?  Call the Coaching Authority today to help you discover ways to get quick results and build a long-term competitive advantage.   As a trained total quality facilitator, Patrick Frazier can help you and your organization eliminate inefficiencies and reduce process variance. Don’t delay. Call the Coaching Authority today!

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The US Standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet 8.5 inches.


Because that’s the way they built them in England, and the US railroads were build by English expatriates.

WHY did the English build them like that?

Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the pre-railroad tramways, and that is the gauge they used.

WHY did they use that gauge then?

Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools that they used for building wagons, which used that wheel spacing.

WHY did the wagons use that odd wheel spacing?

If they tried to use any other spacing the wagons would break on some of the old long distance roads, because that is the spacing of the old wheel ruts.

WHY were the wheel ruts that distance?

Ahhhh. Now we are getting somewhere. The first long roads in Europe were built by Imperial Rome for the benefit of their legions.  The roads have been used ever since.  The initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagons, were first made by Roman war chariots.  Since the chariots were made for Imperial Rome they were alike in the matter of wheel spacing.  Thus we have the answer to the original question.  The US Standard railroad gauge, 4’8.5”, derives from the original specification for an Imperial Roman chariots where made to be just wide enough to accommodate the backbends of two war horses.

But wait.  There’s more.

When we see a Space Shuttle sitting on the launch pad, there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank.  These are the solid rocket boosters, or SRBs.  The SRBs are made by Thiokol at a factory in Utah.  The engineers who designed the SRBs might have preferred to make them a bit bigger, but the SRBs had to be shipped by train from the factory to the launch site.  The railroad line to the factory runs through a tunnel in the mountains.  The SRBs had to fit through the tunnel.  The tunnel is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the railroad track is about as wide as two horses’ behinds.  So a major design feature of what is arguably the world’s most advanced transportation system was determined by the width of a horses rear-end.

Keep this in mind.  Specs and bureaucracies live forever. The next time you are handed a specification and wonder what horse’s behind came up with it, you may be exactly right.

Got a Coach? Get one today and learn how performance coaching can help you challenge the status quo and help your business grow.  As a certified total quality facilitator, Patrick Frazier can help you and your organization get quick results and build a long term competitive advantage.

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What does ‘Explosive Growth’ mean to your business? What would it mean to you personally to see your business grow exponentially?  What is keeping your business from growing?  What needs to happen to overcome that obstacle?  These questions (and many more), are questions that a business coach might use to help you and your team determine the right action to get the right (explosive) results.  Here are some obstacles that may be holding you and your organization back:

No common direction, working on different priorities

Lacking criteria for decision making and empowerment

Silo mentality

Fractionalization of efforts and lost opportunities

Lack of collaboration across departments

Long decision and innovation cycles

Difficulty in sharing info, poor efficiencies, excessive waste

Frustration and turnover

Low standards and wasted energy

Lack of team work

Effort without results

Lack of employee satisfaction

Excessive meetings with no results

Goals that are not relevant to the future strength of the business

Often lacking a customer focus more driven by the P&L

Of course there are many other possible obstacles, but which ones are keeping you from getting the results you had hoped for.  Stop hoping. Start planning.  Got a coach?  Get one! Call the Coaching Authority, TODAY! And get started building that plan to get quick results and explode ahead of the competition!

Take our Quick Poll: Where is the responsibility for achieving organizational goals?

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Ever wonder exactly what is in a ‘Twinkie’.  Probably not. But for those of you that have wondered, but never new where to look – click here.  If you knew the ingredients, then they might not taste so good going down.  Apparently there are 37 individual ingredients that make up that cream filled cake wonder. A list of ingredients or pictures of individually measured elements really doesn’t look or sound so good.  However, put the right amounts all together and then you have a culinary delight!

A Strategic Plan is sort of like that.  You can make an outline or list all the elements of a business strategic plan and it seems lifeless, tasteless and without purpose.  Get the right people focused on the right things, at the right time, to get the right results and you have something to behold. A strategic plan helps a business do exactly that.  A certified business coach can help you pull together all the right ingredients for a sound strategic plan.  For more information on the Strategic Planning process call The Coaching Authority.  Call today, and they might even throw in a free twinke to sweeten up the deal.

Do you have a written strategic plan?

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