Seen & Heard

The good ol’ days

As I was reading the Keeping Current article "No Bachelor’s Degree Required" (September 2013, pp. 12-13) what immediately came to mind is that back in the "good ol’ days," we had tradesman and master journeymen who possessed the lion’s share of the science, technology, engineering and math skills without having a university degree. These master journeymen also took on apprentices whom they tutored and to whom they passed on their knowledge and experience. But many big corporations decided to do away with these master journeymen positions to save money. That’s why you now have degree-holding graduates in the field who do not know which end of a screwdriver to hold.

Alex Lau
Whitby, Ontario

Resonating words

In response to "Words to Work By" (November 2013, pp. 18-25):

Love the quotes. I would also add: "Quality without data is just cheerleading," to which I usually comment that I am not a cheerleader. Not that cheerleading cannot get results. I had an instructor who said, "If you want to improve quality and yields in a steel mill, paint a red band on a visible structure, such as a smoke stack. Everyone will be on their best behavior, assuming they are being watched and a temporary improvement will happen."

This, of course, is not sustainable. Real and continual improvement requires understanding how to make changes that eliminate negative variation and waste.

Mike Williams
Carol Stream, IL

Good quotes are always food for the mind and soul. It simply reminds us that we are here for something good, and we must do it good, with quality and value.

Buds M. Fernando

Give credit where it’s due

I couldn’t agree more with the servant leadership concepts presented in "At Your Service" (November 2013, pp. 38-43). I try to practice it when challenged with leading a group in problem solving. It is my goal to make all participants open minded to all ideas and to make those contributors feel like their ideas are worth considering. The one thing I find most important is at the conclusion of the problem-solving project, recognize everyone involved (to them and bosses) for their contributions. A sure way to kill future team input is to take credit—alone—for the team’s success. Don’t for once think the team’s members aren’t aware of it.

Tom Herr
Huntingdon Valley, PA

Quality tweets

@lupaulise: New on ASQ TV: Why ISO 9001, one of the world’s best known standards, is being revised. Plus, a guide to auditing. http://videos.asq.org/home.

@jstepnio: Excited to see the December issue of Quality Progress arrive today! Don’t miss my Quality in 1st Person article! :) pic.twitter.com/vgRM6Ojprh.

@knowwareman: World Quality Month went by so fast! #WQM13 #qimacros.

Tune In

The latest ASQ episode focuses on careers in quality. In the episode, get career development tips, learn how to get the most out of mentoring and find out where the quality jobs are.

Also, watch upcoming episodes on risk management (available Jan. 7) and global supply chains (Jan. 28).

Visit http://videos.asq.org to access the full video library.

Online Extras

Big data details

Hear more about what quality professionals must know about big data in this month’s Author Audio interview, featuring a conversation with Shu Liu, author of "Breaking Down Barriers," (pp. 16-22).

What do you think?

Let us know what you think of the articles in this issue. Sound off by emailing editor@asq.org, or go online to rate and comment on this month’s feature articles.

Quality questions?

Submit a quality-related question using the online Expert Answers form or email it to editor@asq.org, and QP’s subject matter experts will help you find a solution.

Quick Poll Results

Each month at www.qualityprogress.com, visitors can take an informal survey. Here are the numbers from last month’s Quick Poll:

What do you like best about your job?

  • It’s challenging. 64.7% 
  • Lots of career growth opportunities.  14% 
  • I don’t like my job.  12.6%
  • The amount of money I make.  8.4%

Visit www.qualityprogress.com for the latest question:

What developing innovation will have the biggest impact on our world?

  • Big data.
  • 3-D printing.
  • Package-delivering drones.
  • Self-driving cars.

Quality News Today

Recent headlines from ASQ’s global news service

Honda’s New Plant Takes Manufacturing to Next Level
The factory, with annual capacity to make 250,000 vehicles, specializes in small cars based on the Fit platform. It bustles with hyperefficient machinery that shaves cost and time from Honda’s already lean manufacturing process.

Retailer Amazon Announces Drone Delivery Plan
Jeff Bezos, Amazon.com’s chief executive, says he is planning to take something that looks like a barbecue grill, attach eight propellers and a basket to it, and use it to deliver small items to people’s houses.

Want the latest quality-related news and analysis?
The QNT Weekly enewsletter delivers it every Friday.

Subscribe now at http://email.asq.org/subscribe/qntwk.

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