Letters To The Editor For April 2005

March 23, 2005
Treat employees and lean with respect.

Checkup On China

Re "China Checklist," February 2005: Traci Purdum's excellent advice on how to treat Chinese workers applies to any worker anywhere in the world. Treat everyone with respect. Make your employees feel as if they were family members in your organization. Why should a Western worker have to swallow his or her pride any more than a Chinese worker?

Arnold Howard
Paragon Industries LP
Mesquite, Texas

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Short And Sweet?

Re "Brandt On Leadership -- Beware The McGillicuddy," March 2005: I thought your article was a pile of Brandt.

Jim McGillicuddy, product manager
Krauss Maffei Process Technology Inc.
Florence, Ky.

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I got a kick out of your McGillicuddy article ("Brandt On Leadership -- Beware The McGillicuddy") in the March 2005 issue of IW. Do you have any more on this subject? Maybe a book, a paper or a presentation at a seminar?

Jim Logrando, quality assurance manager
Hastings Machine Co.
Hastings, Pa.

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Another Brandt Rant

Re "Brandt On Leadership -- Hooked On Lean?" February 2005: John Brandt is quite right if the intent of his article is to criticize those who see lean as a "fashion accessory."

The real reason that "lean" is spreading globally is that mature lean value chains led by such enterprises as Toyota, Dell, Pella, Wiremold and others have done the hard work to make lean the currency of their culture and are enjoying significant competitive advantage as a result.

It is now not surprising that lean is migrating beyond the factory floor and when properly integrated and embraced by an organization, can indeed lead to growth, market share and a creative, empowered workforce.

What is puzzling about Brandt's attempt to marginalize the lean movement is the reality of the need for mentoring and knowledge transfer that is so important in transforming a culture and sustaining traction for the proven success that lean enterprise delivers.

Anand Sharma, CEO
TBM Consulting Group
Durham, N.C.

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