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Point to Ponder:
"Here is the test to find whether your mission on Earth is finished: If you’re alive, it isn’t." - Richard Bach.
This year, Friday Reflections got visits by people from 149 countries. Many readers shared interesting stories of their own. When learning is shared, it multiplies.
So in the spirit of “things that are given away are never lost”, here are some of the stories:
1. Keep on learning new skills: they will never abandon you until your mind does.
The thrilling potential of 'SixthSense' technology: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tv/TED-India-Pranav-Mistry/videoshow_ted/5231080.cms
2. Assume Responsibility: If you see an opportunity/problem, you own it.
Pushcart educator named CNN Hero of the Year: http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/living/2009/03/05/heroes.penaflorida.three.cnn
Can I talk to that William fellow? He was so helpful: http://blogs.msdn.com/oldnewthing/archive/2009/11/23/9927055.aspx
3. People and Relationships: It is people who make things happen, not machines.
Pay me now, or pay me later: http://fridayreflections.typepad.com/weblog/2007/10/pay-me-now-or-p.html
4. Flexibility: If you want to be successful in this fast moving world, be ready to change the document before the ink is dry.
Change before you have to (or before it becomes too late): http://fridayreflections.typepad.com/weblog/2009/03/change-before-you-have-to-or-before-it-becomes-too-late-.html
Mission Impossible: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=py8SlrkgNHY
6. Persistence and Passion: Do things with passion. It is contagious.
Apple 1984 Shareholders Meeting: "And don't speak too soon For the wheel's still in spin": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2OrxjxlLE78
7. Performance and Results: In the final analysis, it is the value that you bring to the society.
Leadership is The New Marketing: http://www.schneiderism.com/seth-godin-leadership-is-the-new-marketing/
As a parting thought:
We hope that Friday Reflections has helped you take a few minutes out of a busy week to reflect on these values, and on how you can achieve your own dreams.
Thanks for your support through the years.
We wish you a very Happy Holidays and a successful New Year.
Points to Ponder:
Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren't used to an environment where excellence is expected. (Who said this? Hint: a well-known CEO and incredible "Out of the Box" person)
The answer to this question is in another question “What are your customers’ performance expectations for your products or service?” Realistically, when do people say that something is not good quality (company, person or a product)? It is when one fails to meet the expectations of the other party.
“Are we doing too much Quality?”
The answer to this second question is in having clear understanding and alignment (LEAN principle) of what Quality means, who owns it, and then ponder “Are we producing quality (performance) in most effective way?” This is the real question people want to ask but some how end up questioning the end instead of means, and waste time in UnLEAN discussions and presentations.
So ... if Quality means meeting performance expectations/commitments in any relationship (Product, Service, and Personal) then bold statements such as “My business is different. It is low cost. We can’t live with quality” or, “We are in very cost constrained environment and we need to de-prioritize Quality” sound not only funny (a feast for the cartoonist), but also results in increasing the total cost to the business. Is there a business or relationship where it is OK not to deliver expected performance or not to meet commitments?”
Once it is clear that Quality means delivering on performance expectations for a product, service or relationship, then looking for the answer to the question “Can we produce same quality (a.k.a same performance) at a lower cost?” becomes easier (the LEAN way).
So who and what things are involved in producing the performance? Here is where Deming’s famous statement “Quality is everyone’s responsibility” becomes very relevant. If it is Product or Service Quality, the entire company and its resources contribute in one way or the other to the cost that produces quality (performance). So the company’s entire infrastructure (Processes, Systems, Resource Utilization, and Materials etc) needs to be constantly scrutinized to reduce cost per performance/quality.
These are the primary reasons why the Total Quality Management program in late '80s and early '90s insisted on top-level ownership and commitment, as well as the involvement of the entire company.
This week, we're highlighting an interesting article on the Harvard Business Blog. If you have an idea (e.g. for a project or a product) that seems bold and revolutionary, what's the best way to gain acceptance and implement it?
The answer should be familiar to anyone who is familiar with the principles of continuous improvement in manufacturing.
To read more click here
"Empty your mind, be formless. shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water my friend. If nothing within you stays rigid, outward things will disclose themselves." - Bruce Lee (... analogy to job situation is in Reflection section)
All the world is a stage and men and women are merely the players. While some enter, others exit, a person plays many roles in his/her life time.
There was once a small wave who was unhappy. "I'm so miserable," it moaned. "The other waves are big and powerful, while I'm so little and weak. Why is life so unfair?"
Another wave passing by heard the small wave and decided to stop by. "You only think so because you haven't seen your own 'original nature' clearly. You think you're a wave and you think you're suffering. In reality you are neither."
"What?" The small wave was surprised. "I'm not a wave? But it's obvious I'm a wave! I've got my crest, see? And there's my wake, little as it is. What do you mean I'm not a wave?"
"This thing you call 'wave' is merely a temporary form you assume for a short time. You're really just water! When you understand completely that this is your fundamental nature, you will no longer be confused about being a wave, and you will be free of your misery."
"If I'm water, what about you?"
"I'm water too. I'm temporarily assuming the form of a wave somewhat larger than you, but that doesn't change my fundamental essence - water! I'm you and you're me. We're part of a greater self."
Be Agile, Be Flexible, Be Diverse (Keep on learning new skills). Keep your fundamental values (customer focus, assume responsibility, constantly increasing value to the stakeholders). Whatever assignment you get, do it with passion while staying consistent with your fundamental values. You will not only have a great career but also you will have time of your life.
It's that time again - watch the video above as we rotate a simple image, and let your creativity run free! Let us know what you can see in the comments section. The best idea (leaving an email address) will receive a free copy of Friday Reflections.
Congratulations to last month's winner: Melinda Ball!