Dec 28, 2011

2011 Management Blog Roundup: Business 901

Joe Dager
In an organization's lean transformation, getting sales on board is not always easy. They are used to a tug of war over winning business and fulfilling it and seem to speak a different language. You may be looking around for a new way to present lean that will finally catch their attention.

Joe Dager, author of the Business 901 blog, is the guy who can connect the two worlds. Joe spent one lifetime running a couple of companies that manufactured industrial equipment, so he gets the shop floor issues most lean implementers grapple with. To stay in business and put food on a lot of tables, he also needed to work the revenue side, and seems to have a gift for sales -- he's just the kind of guy you want to be friends with.

A few years ago, Joe started thinking about how lean applies to sales and marketing and now has a budding empire sharing his knowledge in books, podcasts, marketing services, training, and his blog.

What can you gather from reading the Business 901 blog? Joe's one of the Blog Carnival players, so right now you'll see what he recommends you take a look at. I like his picks, and intend to delve into all three of them.

Let's take a look at Joe's own post, Lean sales and marketing works because of leader standard work. Leader standard work seems to be the big thing right now, usually focusing on what an operations manager will do in the plant. Joe looks at how the layers of responsibility in a marketing group can be coordinated with SW, making sure that each has regular sharing with the others, deploying everything from call scripts to campaigns to budgets.

In If less than 1% of companies are successful with lean, why are we doing it? Joe reckons with this assessment from Jeff Liker, one that sounds pretty discouraging when you are putting all your energy into getting your organization to move along the path. Joe sees it another way. What works for the one percent... the same thing for both people and organizations. It is the scientific process of trial and error. You don’t get it right at first, you have to break habits, personal habits as an individual and company cultures as an organization. Successful companies do it a little bit at a time. In Lean, we call this scientific method PDCA. We plan, do it, check the results and adjust. It is a purposeful experimentation.
To me, this is the excitement of Lean, is this empowering aspect that is not easy. You teach people, rather than solve people’s problems for them. And in doing so, they learn how to make better decisions which leads to better performance.
Dr. Michael Balle stated in an interview with me, “Lean gives you an ideal; it’s a commitment to an ideal.”
So take Joe's inspiring tidbits from his blog, add them to his podcast interviews with influential thinkers, and blend with some of his books and slidecasts and you'll begin to see how lean operations can partner with sales, share practices and a philosophy to make a company more competitive and fun to work in.

The complete Management Improvement Carnival list


Joe Dager said...

Thanks for the wonderful comments, Karen.

Unknown said...

Well deserved!

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