Looks Good on Paper

The heart of today’s quality problems lies in an accounting system that has remained unchanged for more than 60 years. The cost accounting system used today in the United States and many other parts of the world is based upon the Sloan School of Management’s M model (i.e., men, materials and machines). Let’s look at how the Sloan accounting model came into existence Continue reading

Let’s Stop Paying Lip Service to Excellence

The time has come to change our standards. Our companies must make fewer errors and permit fewer defects. Poor employee training, inferior supervision and one-way communication must be corrected. It’s time to stop accepting mediocre performance as “exceeds expectations.” An error rate of 3.4 errors per million opportunities isn’t good enough. We must embark on a new philosophy of Continue reading

Basic Block and Tackle

Last year was a landmark for U.S. automakers. Ford Motor Co., the founder of the auto industry in the United States, lost its longstanding second place standing to Toyota Motor Corp., and General Motors Corp. may also bite the dust because Toyota sold more cars in the United States last year than GM did. Chrysler produced thousands of cars that it wasn’t able to sell. In 2000, about two-thirds of all cars purchased in North America were bought from U.S. companies. That figure has now dropped to 54 percent. Detroit sales keep falling while Japanese and Korean auto companies gain ground in the U.S. market. Consumer Reports recommends a much smaller percentage of autos manufactured by U.S. companies than by their Japanese counterparts—37 percent to 80 percent, respectively. “[U.S. companies’] reliability is hit-or-miss,” it states, “not consistent like that of vehicles from some Japanese companies.” Continue reading

The Deindustrialization of the United States

So if the United States continues to allow its manufacturing base to erode at a staggering pace how in the world can the U.S. continue to consider itself to be a great nation? We have created the biggest debt bubble in the history of the world in an effort to maintain a very high standard of living, but the current state of affairs is not anywhere close to sustainable. Every single month America goes into more debt and every single month America gets poorer.

So what happens when the debt bubble pops? Continue reading