Improve Manufacturing Operations | Manage Change

January 18th, 2013

In manufacturing, change is a part of the job. No matter the industry or position, things change. As an employee, it can be hard to swallow change, especially when it means learning something new or setting a new goal. Before you can lead your employees through such changes, you need to be ready to face them yourself.

To Improve You Must Change

There is always going to be change. In order to see any improvement, you need to see changes occurring. Companies cannot improve especially in today’s economy without making changes that affect the bottom line, the product, or the results. The key factor to remember is that it’s not about processes, but about focusing on people instead. What can you do?

One step in the right direction is to talk to the people that are actually involved in the processes that you plan to change. Gather applicable information from these employees (not from surveys or other plans.) The employee, in most cases, often knows exactly what you can do to improve the operational process to get the results you want. This is the information you need to have if you want to make changes to improve efficiency overall.

Why Don’t They Do It?

Why don’t managers talk to employees more often to gather this information? Many believe that employees will criticize the system, often the one that the current manager has put into place. That means the manager ends up with the blame on his shoulders. Some employees are unwilling to share the truth for fear of stepping on toes.

The key to overcoming this is the job of the manager. He or she needs to push aside the defensive attitude and realize that some processes may no longer be adequate or even effective in the current situation. How can you fix this problem? Don’t look at it has something you did wrong.

Seek It Out

It’s a good idea for managers to not only be willing to hear criticisms, but also to take steps to seek it out. That’s not always something people will do easily. Yet, by becoming an effective communicator and learning from employees (the ones on the job floor doing the work) it is possible to see continuous change improvement this way.

By creating the type of culture that encourages this type of behavior, for the employees not only to do their job but also to be critical thinkers, far more can be accomplished. It’s a great way to see change that starts with the people in the business. Hiring a temporary workforce who understands the aspect the change in manufacturing can be one way to handle this challenge. Stark Talent gives you tools to manage change in your staffing needs, with customized staffing support and quality employees on-demand.

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