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A Modern Parable

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 13:07
Chris Farris View Drop Down
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A Modern Parable

 

A Japanese company (Toyota ) and an American company (General Motors) decided to have a canoe race on the Missouri River. Both teams practiced long and hard to reach their peak performance before the race.

On the big day, the Japanese won by a mile.

The Americans, very discouraged and depressed, decided to investigate the reason for the crushing defeat. A management team made up of senior management was formed to investigate and recommend appropriate action.

Their conclusion was the Japanese had 8 people rowing and 1 person steering, while the American team had 8 people steering and 1 person rowing.

Feeling that a deeper study was in order, American management hired a consulting company and paid them a large amount of money for a second opinion.

They advised, of course, that too many people were steering the boat, while not enough people were rowing.

Not sure of how to utilize that in formation, but wanting to prevent another loss to the Japanese, the rowing team's management structure was totally reorganized to 4 steering supervisors, 3 area steering superintendents and 1 assistant superintendent steering manager.

They also implemented a new performance system that would give the one person rowing the boat greater incentive to work harder. It was called the 'RTQFP' (Rowing Team Quality First Program), with meetings, dinners and free pens for the rower. There was discussion of getting new paddles, canoes and other equipment, extra vacation days for practices and bonuses.

The next year the Japanese won by two miles.

Humiliated, the American management laid off the rower for poor performance, halted development of a new canoe, sold the paddles, and canceled all capital investments for new equipment. The money saved was distributed to the Senior Executives as bonuses and the next year 's racing team was out-sourced to India.


Sadly, The End.


Here's something else to think about: Ford has spent the last thirty years moving all its factories out of the US , claiming they can't make money paying American wages.

TOYOTA has spent the last thirty years building more than a dozen plants inside the US. The last quarter's results:

TOYOTA makes 4 billion in profits while Ford racked up 9 billion in losses.

Ford folks are still scratching their heads.

IF THIS WASN'T SO SAD IT MIGHT BE FUNNY

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 13:21
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It's quite sad, but quite true.

 

What happened to the heart of all the big american companies?

 

This company needs to grow it's balls back and quit wining about everthing.  This is a HUGE problem.

 

J

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 16:00
tahqua View Drop Down
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Originally posted by Chris Farris Chris Farris wrote:

A Modern Parable

 

Here's something else to think about: Ford has spent the last thirty years moving all its factories out of the US , claiming they can't make money paying American wages.

TOYOTA has spent the last thirty years building more than a dozen plants inside the US. The last quarter's results:

TOYOTA makes 4 billion in profits while Ford racked up 9 billion in losses.

Ford folks are still scratching their heads.

IF THIS WASN'T SO SAD IT MIGHT BE FUNNY

 

Not a parable but a joke that has been floating around FoMoCo emails for some time.

Ford made $750 million last quarter.

As far as moving all of our plants off shore, nothing could be further from the truth. We have closed inefficient plants, some of them multi-level that cannot support flexable manufacturing. We have also shut others do to location from suppliers in a just in time era. The bottom line is that we have shut plants because of over capacity due to shrinking market share. This situation stinks for all of us at Ford and it is not pretty.

On the other hand we have invested heavily in new technology and improving existing plants. We have also built a new flexible assembly plant at the Ford Rouge Center. This plant is capable of building several vehicles with different platforms. The Rouge Center also has a modern integrated stamping plant using the latest in metal stamping presses. Our Schuler press was on the History Channel.

All of our plants have work teams that look for the root cause of TGW's and use data analysis to stop problems in there tracks. This is not management doing this alone, but integrated teams consisting of assemblers, trades people and engineering. We all have a stake in Ford's future. All Ford employees take ownership in the company.

John, I assure you that there is no whining at Ford Motor Company and we have excellent people in engineering and manufacturing working on every level of concern. We are lean and will resolve the issues. When more arise we will attack them, also. That is what continuous improvement is all about.

This was all discussed earlier in the year. http://opticstalk.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=5799&KW=edge&a mp;TPN=1

 

Doug

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 16:18
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It's the first time I've seen this e-mail.  I am glad you set the facts straight because I am a FoMoCo fan, it's all I've ever owned.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 18:31
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Tahqua,

 

As a sometimes owner of Ford stock, please let me comment.  Management is crazy.  I do not mean the people on the line or even the design teams or even higher management.  I do mean that the ownership is split into two factions that are at odd with one another.  You have the Ford family trust fund babies verses the rest of the world.  The trust fund babies are trying to save the freaking world.  Everybody else is trying to make a profit by selling cars.  There is a fundamental disconect between the two groups.  That is why GM is recovering faster than Ford, they do not have that problem.

 

As a note Toyota and Honda do not focus on being the low cost provider.  Ford tries to fit various product into this niche.  It's a fools game. The competition is focusing on cost of ownership, while Ford only looks at cost of production. 

 

During the spring the boss gets us what ever cheap rental car he can find. Nobody wanted the Ford.  Spend all day in a Focus and you HURT!

 

Regionally dealer support varies greatly for all makes but Honda. For the record, I've owned Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Honda, and Jeep.  GM makes nice stuff, but Mopar offer a better value.  If I were buying a car again Honda would be my first look, with Toyota my second. SUV Jeep then Toyota. Truck Dodge, Toyota, Chevy.  The only Ford to make my list is honorablemention for the Mustang convertable.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 20:30
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here is my opinion of ford, i know ford makes a damn tough work truck, the best in the business i think. so to me there is only one real problem with ford, they arent pushing there bread and butter, the f-series pick up is what ford is all about, imo ford should dump car making in general and just stick to pickups, tahqua dont take this to heart but imo ford aint a car company, just like dodge isnt when i think ford i automaticaly think f-series truck, i think dodge i think mini van, chevy makes the cars, and lets face it gm has always made great cars through out history belaire  stingray  chevelle  camaro  gto olds442 malibu lumina etc chevy builds an ok truck i like there ride but i know that day in and day out they wont take the punishment an f-series will at work. so my advice is focus on what your good at, now in ford's defense i will admitt that people love the taurus, and i was actually glad they brought it back.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/01/2007 at 21:23
tahqua View Drop Down
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Originally posted by silver silver wrote:

 

 

As a note Toyota and Honda do not focus on being the low cost provider.  Ford tries to fit various product into this niche.  It's a fools game. The competition is focusing on cost of ownership, while Ford only looks at cost of production. 

 

 

Ford looks at what the consumer wants and designs a product to suit. They may not always get a hit but so far with the Edge, Focus and Taurus things are looking good. The Flex is just around the corner and if the reviews from the New York Auto Show are any indication will be a hot seller.

The Taurus X should do quite well and is going to be in the same market as our Volvo XC-90. It has three row seating and will leave Ford a solid line up in the cross over segment.

I will have to look in my folders and post some of the other humour that goes around. Don't get me wrong, I am a big supporter of Ford Motor Company, but humility is a good thing. That's we we receive all this

Super High Intensity Training.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 08:10
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tahqua - i wasn't referring to FORD as the whiners.  I meant to say COUNTRY, not company

I have owned fords before and will again, i am sure.

 

just our country in general - or the ones TRYING to govern the country are the whiners.

 

There is a core of good people w/ good values.  They just need to get off their ass and do something.

 

This new generation of 'activists' scares the crap out of me.  They will realize they were dead wrong when they grow up.

and that will, unfortunately, be too late.

 

Our role models are going to hell in a handbasket and our children are following suit.

 

my 2 cents. it's worth 2 cents. hehee.

 

J

 

P.S. - the ford Five Hundred series is quite nice. for a car.

 

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 09:20
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Pyro,

 

C'mon man!  FORD is much more than the F-Series.

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 11:06
tahqua View Drop Down
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Okay, I said I would get some more auto industry humor so here is a starter.

 

How a Honda employee bakes a potato:

Preheat new, high-quality oven to 350 F.  Insert Idaho potato.  Go do

something productive for 45 minutes. Check for doneness, and then remove

perfectly baked potato from oven and serve.

How a GM employee bakes a potato:

Instruct an Idaho potato supplier to preheat the oven to 350 F. Demand that

the supplier show you how he turned the dial to reach 350F, and have him

come up with documentation from the oven manufacturer proving that it was

calibrated properly.  Review documentation, then have supplier check the

temperature using sophisticated temperature probe.   Direct supplier to

insert potato and set timer for 45 minutes. Have supplier open oven to

prove potato has been installed correctly, and request a free study proving

that

45 minutes is the ideal time to bake a potato of this size.

Check potato for doneness after 10 minutes.

Check potato for doneness after 11 minutes.

Check potato for doneness after 12 minutes.

Become impatient with supplier (why is this simple potato taking so long to

bake?). Demand status reports every five minutes.  Check potato for

doneness after 15 minutes... After 35 minutes, conclude that potato is

nearing

completion. Congratulate supplier, and then update your boss on all the

great work you've done, despite having to work with such an uncooperative

supplier. Remove potato from oven after 40 minutes of baking, as a cost

savings; without loss of function or quality versus the original 45 minute

baking time. Serve potato. Wonder aloud what on earth those Japanese folks

are doing over there to make such good low-cost baked potatoes that people

seem to like better than GM potatoes.

Daimler Chrysler's Baked Potatoes:

Design great looking potato. Include sour cream, bacon bits, chives, and

cheese.

Bean counters then create MCM system. Engineers spend 2 years looking for

ways to take out sour cream, bacon bits, chives, and cheese. Engineers find

cheap imitation chives from Japanese supplier. Management commands

engineers to use expensive, over-engineered German bacon bits to help prop

up weak

German suppliers. Sell potato with cheap imitation chives, no sour cream,

cheese or expensive German bacon bits. Potato rots so fast customer swears

never to buy another DCX potato.

Ford's Baked Potatoes:

Engineers create plain looking, "everyman" potato.

Sold as "green" alternative to French Fries.

When micro waved, potato explodes, causing death and injury to customers

and bringing end to 100-year potato and butter-supplier relationship,

Lawyers

flourish.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 11:13
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This is from a friend at DCX

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 11:36
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Originally posted by jonbravado jonbravado wrote:

Our role models are going to hell in a handbasket and our children are following suit.

 

my 2 cents. it's worth 2 cents. hehee.

 

J

 

 

 

John, just so you know. We are looking at a car for one of our daughters and she has been looking at the used lots at local Ford dealers on the web. She tells me on the phone she found a car within our guidelines. So I look on the tube and it's a Mitsubichi. This is after stating several times that what we buy is going to be a Ford.

So.......I point at our roof and inform her that it is over her head because of FoMoCo and the food she eats is because of FoMoCo. Maybe this isn't a values thing and just push back from a teenage girl, I dunno. If it is values, I'm a terrible role model.

 

Doug

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 12:14
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nah - marketing has a big role in what kids see - even my WIFE falls victim to 'slick' marketing.

 

after reading your posts for some time now, tahqua, i am sure her dad is doing a fine job.

 

i was a dumb kid (probably still am, a bit) and learned the hard way after being on my own.

values are getting harder to instill in the youngsters these days.

 

oh well - what do we do?

 

J

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 12:17
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Thanks, I appreciate that, John.

 

Doug

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/02/2007 at 21:35
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This may not still be common practice;

Some years ago I worked for a non-automotive company with a large facility in Smyrna, Tn.  I visited that plant on a semi-regular basis.
About the only place in town to eat that was safe was the Shoney's.....right next to the Suds-N-Duds laundamat and pizza parlor.
Each morning the parking lot was lined with employees of a foriegn car manufacturer, sitting on the curb, waiting to go inside and eat.
One morning I just had to ask.  Seems the "labor" could not even enter the establishment if there was "management" inside dining.

I just can't wrap my mind around that.


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/03/2007 at 21:55
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Originally posted by Chris Farris Chris Farris wrote:

Pyro,

 

C'mon man!  FORD is much more than the F-Series.

 

sorry chris when the word sports car is said i never ever think ford,

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/04/2007 at 11:30
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More auto industry humor

 

Numbers do not lie.

This is a strictly mathematical viewpoint...it goes like this:

What Makes 100%? What does it mean to give MORE than 100%?

Ever wonder about those people who say they are giving more
than 100%? We have all been to those meetings where someone
wants you to give over 100%. How about achieving 103%?
What makes up 100% in life?

Here's a little mathematical formula that might help you

answer these questions:

If:
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

is represented as:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26.

Then:

H-A-R-D-W-O-R-K
8+1+18+4+23+15+18+11 = 98%


and


K-N-O-W-L-E-D-G-E
11+14+15+23+12+5+4+7+5 = 96%

But,

A-T-T-I-T-U-D-E
1+20+20+9+20+21+4+5 = 100%

And,

B-U-L-L-S-H-I-T
2+21+12+12+19+8+9+20 = 103%

AND, look how far ass kissing will take you.

A-S-S-K-I-S-S-I-N-G
1+19+19+11+9+19+19+9+14+7 = 118%

So, one can conclude with mathematical certainty that While Hard work and
Knowledge will get you close, and Attitude will get you there, it's the
Bullsh*t and Ass kissing that will put you over the top.



Edited by tahqua
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: August/04/2007 at 23:41
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Man have you hit a chord!!!!   I bleed ford blue (Only drive Fords) but work for Mercedes Benz. My Bots paint the GL and the ML models.  There is a lot of truth in your parable and some humor, but the truth is management needs to lead and UNIONS need to get out of politics and get back to understanding worker needs, JOBS!!!  "I don't begrudge a rich man a quarter, cause a poor man never gave me a job". The problem is not just in the auto industry our steel industry has gotten' its butt kicked for allot of the same reason.  Most of the worlds infrastructure was destroyed, if you needed steel, we were the only supplier. As we sat around selling everybody steel making it with hundred year old technology never even thinking about modernization, the world grew up. After the world rebuilt. It used new technology to create modernized automated systems that are more efficient and cheaper to produce their products.  Corporate America needed a window installed in their bellies so they could see where they were walking. Union leaders sold out the shop floor to hobnob with politicians and here we are.  If your wondering why I work for a foreign auto manufacturer, See quote above. There is another saying some people forget,  the U.S. Auto Industry leads the way. Wherever Detroit goes, so goes the country, the auto industry is the first hit in hard times. I recommend you batten down the hatches. We may be in for a wild ride.
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