Seen and Heard

Coaching on the job

In response to "Quality Bulldogs" (April 2015): I have always felt like coaching gives back more than it takes personally and professionally.

As a manager, I find myself frequently "coaching up" my co-workers. When I was hired in my current role, I made no mistake that I was a coach, and my end state was to have a high-functioning team that cooperated and collaborated with other parts of the company so that we (our team) could become a resource for other departments, and I meant every word of it.

What the article describes is one part motivation, one part diagnostics (assessing strengths and weaknesses) and one part training (drills). Coaching is one of those ways we can sharpen the blade because it requires us to do the things described in the article and more, such as conflict management, behavioral management, game management (resource allocation) and planning.

I haven’t coached in more than 20 years but a friend of mine at work needed help because the league his son played in did not have enough coaches, so I told him I would help. It has been great and has given me a new perspective on things I can do or do differently in my professional role.

Mike Alumbaugh
Derby, KS

Making the most of FMEA

I fully agree with the author of "No Finish Line" (April 2015). Failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA) is a document that is based on the estimation in the initial stage based on the past knowledge gained. As the knowledge about the customer requirements changes, so does the severity factor.

Also, the field returns or internal failures refine the estimates of the occurrence. These must be drilled back into the FMEA to make it closer to reality. The more accurate the FMEA is, the more useful a tool it will be.

Rajan Bhagwat
Chetananagar, Nasik, India

Focus on value

In response to "Tell Me What I Don’t Know" (April 2015): As an internal auditor, sometimes we concentrate on nonvalue-adding sections. I recommend every auditor read this article and start practicing this way of auditing. I am definitely going to start applying this method.

Nompumelelo Masiko
Saxonwald, Johannesburg,
Gauteng, South Africa

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Tune In

In the latest episode of ASQ TV, learn how to introduce quality to your workplace. The episode includes: how a plant manager made quality fun, how the absence of quality can create disaster and introducing lean and 5S principles to mainstream audiences. The next episode covering teams is available June 16. Visit http://videos.asq.org to access the full video library.

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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:

May was the month of ASQ’s World Conference on Quality Improvement in Nashville. Which famous Milwaukeean would you like to see as next year’s keynote speaker when the conference is in Milwaukee?

Henry Winkler ("The Fonz" in Milwaukee-based TV show "Happy Days"). 35.7%

Gene Wilder. 25%

Steve Miller. 17.8%

Hank Aaron. 14.2%

Bud Selig. 3.5%

Frank Caliendo. 3.5%

Visit www.qualityprogress.com for the latest question:

What efforts most enhance an organization’s culture?

  • Providing frequent opportunities for employees’ feedback.
  • Involving the entire workforce in improvement initiatives.
  • Hosting fun, team-building activities.
  • Offering benefits, such as training and tuition reimbursement.
  • Encouraging risk-taking.
  • Leadership engaging with frontline staff.


Recent headlines from ASQ’s global news service

Toyota Reinvents the Factory
Toyota has spent the past four years rethinking its principles of mass production. What has resulted is arguably the most significant reboot of the modern production line since Henry Ford’s 1913 Model T line began rolling.

FAA Expands Commercial Drone Testing
A new Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) program will test the expanded use of drones for commercial purposes, including flying over urban areas and over distances farther than the pilot can see.

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