Erika James’s picture

By: Erika James

Patagonia, the sportswear brand, made headlines this summer when its founder and CEO, Yvon Chouinard, announced his intention to effectively give away the multibillion dollar business instead of selling it.

Chouinard, a famously “reluctant” entrepreneur, detailed his decision to an astonished press and media: Patagonia was to be turned over to a nonprofit trust, the Holdfast Collective, and its profits channeled exclusively into efforts to fight the climate crisis.

Although the decision to “go purpose” instead of “going public” has been heralded by many as setting a new standard in corporate citizenship, it was still not an easy one for Chouinard to make. Patagonia explored every option, he says, including selling the company privately—a decision that ran the risk of new owners not sharing his values or vision for the environment. In a statement published on Patagonia’s website, he writes: “Another path was to take the company public. What a disaster that would have been. Even public companies with good intentions are under too much pressure to create short-term gain at the expense of long-term vitality and responsibility. Truth be told, there were no good options available. So, we created our own.”

Bryan Christiansen’s picture

By: Bryan Christiansen

Assets are resources owned and used by a company to generate a positive economic benefit. Assets can be physical items, like equipment or furniture, or they can be intangibles like software, patents, or documents.

As a business owner, it’s important to know which assets you own, their location, and their value. Your shareholders would also like to know that company assets are being efficiently used and maintained.

All of that can be covered by a good asset management policy. Let’s see how.

Why do you need an asset management policy?

An asset management policy is an overarching, high-level document that helps businesses meet their governance, quality, and strategic needs.

It dictates how a business maintains the integrity and availability of all assets by outlining the company’s requirements for asset ownership, categorization, acceptable use, and ongoing maintenance.

Multiple Authors
By: Leeza Garber, Allison Jegla

In late spring 2022, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged an elite investment adviser for “misstatements and omissions” about environmental, social, and governance (ESG) considerations related to its managed mutual funds. This same financial firm has also faced myriad cybersecurity problems during the past 15 years, including a data breach and deficient cybersecurity practices.

It’s not a unique scenario: Companies large and small, public and private, are facing increased challenges in managing the requirements and responsibilities of ESG and cybersecurity. Both fields, besides maintaining a stronghold on news headlines and cutting-edge tech entrepreneurs, demand not just constant attention but also transparency. As various federal agencies have demonstrated, audits and investigations will determine when quality reviews and compliance certifications aren’t accurate.

Jeff Dewar’s picture

By: Jeff Dewar

This is the final installment of a five-part series.

We’ve considered two quality organizations. The first, ASQ, has been around since 1946. Founded by none other than W. Edwards Deming, Joseph M. Juran, Walter A. Shewhart, and George D. Edwards. Titans of the quality field. Visionaries before they were recognized as such.

The second, ASQE, is barely two years old. Birthed by ASQ as a trade organization, with membership of 180 organizations and growing, is grappling with getting recognized and understood even by long-term quality professionals. As you will see, its time will come.

We sat down with both CEOs and discussed their “connected journey”—how 1 + 1 = 3, and how the two quality organizations mutually support the profession and the industry, the individual, and the organization.

Some weeks ago, Quality Digest Editor-in-Chief Dirk Dusharme and I attended ASQ’s 2022 World Conference on Quality and Improvement (WCQI) in Anaheim, California. It was the first in-person conference since Covid hit the world, and attendance was just over 1,000, about a third of what had been the norm.

S. Heather Duncan’s picture

By: S. Heather Duncan

A new deep-learning framework developed at the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory is speeding up the process of inspecting additively manufactured metal parts using X-ray computed tomography, or CT, while increasing the accuracy of the results. The reduced costs for time, labor, maintenance, and energy are expected to accelerate expansion of additive manufacturing, or 3D printing.

“The scan speed reduces costs significantly,” says ORNL lead researcher Amir Ziabari. “And the quality is higher, so the post-processing analysis becomes much simpler.”

The framework is already being incorporated into software used by commercial partner Zeiss within its machines at DOE’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at ORNL, where companies hone 3D-printing methods.

ORNL researchers have previously developed technology that can analyze the quality of a part while it is being printed. Adding a high level of imaging accuracy after printing provides an additional level of trust in additive manufacturing while potentially increasing production.

Elizabeth Benham’s picture

By: Elizabeth Benham

Calling all teachers, parents, and students. It’s easy to learn the metric system—or, as it’s more formally called, the International System of Units (SI). Explore these top 10 tips for teaching the SI. Let’s begin the countdown with....

10. Make it fun!

Integrating metric measurements into play activities is an easy way to motivate students to learn more, build self-confidence, and transfer metric measurement skills to other situations. Games provide a low-risk opportunity to experience success applying metric measurements.

Gleb Tsipursky’s picture

By: Gleb Tsipursky

BlackRock CEO Larry Fink claimed in a recent interview with Fox that “we have to get our employees back in the office.” According to him, doing so would result in “rising productivity that will offset some of the inflationary pressures.”

Fink didn’t provide any data in the form of statistics, surveys, or studies to support his claims. He simply insisted, without evidence, that in-office work would reduce inflation. So what do the data say?

Kerry Stevenson’s picture

By: Kerry Stevenson

Operating a desktop FFF 3D printer can be a ton of fun, except when you make mistakes. Mistakes can cause print failures, and also embarrassment when they are so obvious you really should not have made them.

Let’s take a look at my list of the eight dumbest FFF 3D printing mistakes you can make.

Mismatched filament

Symptom: “Why is there no extrusion? Is there a jam?” No, it’s because you’re trying to print a higher-temperature material like ABS or ASA when you’ve sliced the job for PLA temperatures.

Cause: This is a common mistake caused by forgetting to select the proper material when slicing a print job. It’s easy to focus on other parameters and forget to match the slicing material to the actual spool on the machine.

Solution: Always double-check the spool type and slicing material.

Forgetting support structures

Symptoms: “Why is this print all spaghetti?” “What happened to the underside of the protrusion?” “The print just failed, and I don’t know why.”

Multiple Authors
By: Alex Waddell, Diki Tsering, Peter Bragge, Paul Kellner

Emergency medical workers, already at increased risk for burnout compared to other professions, continue to be challenged by the fallout of Covid-19.

Stretched to the breaking point by increased workloads, highly contagious and acutely ill patients, and limited resources, workers’ risk factors for burnout have been amplified.

One obvious solution is to fix critical staffing shortages. But emergency health worker burnout was an issue before pandemic-driven staff shortages, and will likely continue into the future.

There is no easy fix, but the World Health Organization has been calling for action to better protect workers because many are leaving the profession.

Jeff Dewar’s picture

By: Jeff Dewar

This is the fourth installment of a five-part series.

As detailed in our third installment, ASQE is a new legal entity connected to the ASQ we all know and love. It’s a trade organization to which organizations, rather than individuals, can belong. Current membership is about 180 organizations, including Procter & Gamble, FedEx, and the IRS. Dozens have joined in 2022 alone.  

Some weeks ago, Quality Digest Editor-in-Chief Dirk Dusharme and I attended ASQ’s 2022 World Conference on Quality and Improvement (WCQI) in Anaheim, California. It was the first in-person conference since Covid hit the world, and attendance was just over 1,000, about a third of what had been the norm.  

ASQ made its leadership available for wide-ranging video interviews covering everything from the future of the quality profession to the organization’s new legal structure. Quality Digest appreciates ASQ’s efforts to help us provide valuable reporting to our readers.  

In all, we conducted five interviews with:
• ASQ’s CEO Ann Jordan
• ASQ’s board of directors
• ASQE’s CEO Jim Templin
• ASQE’s board of directors
• Both CEOs together, talking about their “connected journey”

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