At Ampogee, we often find ourselves in a manufacturing environment conducting a training session in person. When you are supporting an operation, the most effective trainings happen in person. For one, most of the operators don't have access to a computer on the floor, but even if a computer was present, they wouldn't be able to hear the zoom call due to the manufacturing ambient noise and quite frankly it’s tough to focus on a zoom call anywhere, much less on the factory shop floor.
For Duke University, the key to keeping students on campus with in person instruction has been thorough systems for monitoring community health beyond COVID testing.
If you are a leader in manufacturing right now, you are drinking from the firehose. Between the unexpected events of employees exposure or diagnosis with COVID, you are also managing material shortages and order changes at an unprecedented level. Your life right now feels especially chaotic, and there is no real antidote for that chaos.
Many organizations that I work with have this concern when we first start discussing a software for tracking performance of individuals on the shop floor.
When most manufacturers are trying to impact productivity, they are focused on improving the number of units produced per labor hour. If a manufacturer can get more units out for the same or less labor put into the units, they will have improved their labor productivity.
One of the biggest differentiators between manufacturing organizations is how they learn and improve. Continuous improvement is a popular buzzword in the industry, but few organizations have tapped the top tiers of continuous improvement. After seeing manufacturers at all the different stages of the continuous improvement journey, I have 3 steps to help your team get grounded in the foundations of continuous improvement.
We are starting to hear the communities think about "opening back up" after the first wave of extreme social distancing comes to a close. Employers have furloughed and laid off staff, and they are already thinking through who would be best to bring back on full time, part time, and who is a permanent departure from the team.
As you and your leadership team respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, you can think of this as an opportunity to improve your manufacturing team culture. Take this opportunity to invest in people, and you will have a stronger employee culture on the other side. “At the end of the day people won’t remember what you said or did, they will remember how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou
I’m always overwhelmed when I walk in a manufacturing plant and see miles of endless charts on the wall with red and green dots. Individually, I know that chart means something to one or a few people, but collectively my brain is blurred at answering the most basic questions: