‘Productivity isn’t everything,’ wrote economist Paul Krugman, ‘but, in the long run, it is almost everything. A country’s ability to improve its standard of living over time depends almost entirely on its ability to raise its output per worker.’
Productivity is simply a ratio of outputs to inputs. We would all like to learn how to get the maximum output for the least amount of input. Productivity improvement is not merely cutting costs, as some corporate toe-cutters would have you believe. There is both a numerator and a denominator in the equation. You can increase the numerator, decrease the denominator or do some combination of the two. (more…)
Recently, I wrote about Asset Constraint Management and the capabilities required to achieve remarkable results. None of that will amount to much if you don’t encourage a systems thinking mindset with behaviours to match. Systems thinking is at the heart of what we do, encapsulated in our mantra: ‘know the whole, focus on the constraint’. Knowing the whole and being able to focus on the constraint is not possible without a commitment to lifelong learning—another core tenet of the Ensemble Way. (more…)
In my article Competing by Managing Asset Bottlenecks, I unpacked our value statement: ‘We help ambitious executives in industrial environments systemically improve productivity’. This article looks at four levers that fulfil this promise to make Asset Constraint Management yield its full potential. First, let’s see why it’s so essential to get the most from your assets.(more…)
Peter Drucker quipped, ‘Business has only two functions—marketing and innovation.’ Early in my career, I focused obsessively on innovations in productivity. The really hard part, though, is convincing an organisation that a better way of delivering greater productivity exists. Allow me to try.(more…)
The first two parts of our series on storytelling focused on the overarching narrative: the big stories we tell ourselves. In this final article, we look at smaller stories—the kind we tell every day—which can add up to a shift in mindset from the listener.
We no doubt need the large stories that place us as the hero on our journey to something greater than ourselves. But how do we get there? What do we encounter in our daily adventures at work? And how can we learn from others in our field—or even way outside it? Smaller stories make our points more memorable to the listener. Done right, they can spread throughout the organisation. (more…)
In Part One of this series on storytelling, we looked at the importance of stories as a way to inspire change in the people we seek to lead. This article looks at the big, overarching narratives that can drive our people to see themselves and their work in a new light.
We tell our biggest stories at the level of myths and legends. They answer the questions about why we’re here, how we must behave within our cultural group, and what we must do to live a good, true and beautiful life. (more…)