Training Article

Laurel Thoennes @ Quality Digest’s picture

By: Laurel Thoennes @ Quality Digest

In the foreword of Mark Graban’s book, Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More (Constancy Inc., 2018), renowned statistician, Donald J. Wheeler, writes about Graban: “He has created a guide for using and understanding the data that surround us every day.

“These numbers are constantly changing,” explains Wheeler. “Some of the changes in the data will represent real changes in the underlying system or process that generated the data. Other changes will simply represent the routine variation in the underlying system when nothing has changed.”

The problem is in deciding whether data changes are “noise” or signals of real changes in the system.

“Mark presents the antidote to this disease of interpreting noise as signals,” adds Wheeler. “And that is why everyone who is exposed to business data of any type needs to read this book.”

Mike Richman’s picture

By: Mike Richman

With more than 110,000 expected attendees, IMTS is Chicago’s hottest suburb this week. (I like to refer to it as “Manufactureville.”) Here’s what we covered during our second show of the week, from the booth of today’s sponsor, Q-Mark Manufacturing:

“Tapping Your Employee’s Knowledge”

It’s no secret that the employees closest to a process know best how to improve it. But how do you tap that knowledge without ruffling feathers?

“What Business Are You Really In?”

Author and consultant Jesse Lyn Stoner offers this trenchant look at the true reasons why a business exists: To better serve customers.

Tech Corner: Q-Mark Styli

Katie Takacs’s picture

By: Katie Takacs

As a consumer, it’s nearly impossible to get away from videos, advertising or otherwise. To give you a numeric sense of our collective obsession with online moving images: Since last year, YouTube has started registering more than a billion hours of video viewing every single day.

We all know the reasons we personally turn to YouTube, whether it’s to watch sports highlights, silly cat videos, cooking instructions, or power tool demonstrations. But does video—originally a consumer-oriented medium—have a rightful place in the marketing arsenal for manufacturers with a strong B2B audience?

Mark Rosenthal’s picture

By: Mark Rosenthal

During a TED talk, Amy Edmondson, the Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management at Harvard Business School, talks about “How to turn a group of strangers into a team.” Although long-standing teams are able to perform, our workplaces today require ad-hoc collaboration between diverse groups. The question is: What kind of leadership, and what kind of structure, contribute to working together on the problem?

Edmondson studies people and teams seeking to make a positive difference through the work they do. For those of you unfamiliar with her work, I’ll add that I have found anything that she writes or speaks about is worth reading or listening to.

The key message in her Ted talk starts around the 10-minute point:

“When teaming works, you can be sure that leaders, leaders at all levels, have been crystal clear that they don’t have the answers. Let’s call this ‘situational humility.’ It’s appropriate humility. We don’t know how to do it.”

Laurel Thoennes @ Quality Digest’s picture

By: Laurel Thoennes @ Quality Digest

Does this sound familiar? The keynote speaker is talking a mile a minute as you scramble to take notes on her every word. Your hand cramps, and then it’s over. Speaker bows to a standing ovation while you sit perturbed, knowing you missed some things. But angst arrives as you look over your notes and realize you can’t read your handwriting!

It’s easy to blurt, “That’s the last time I do that!” only to find yourself at another seminar scribbling notes in much the same fashion. End the muda with visual note-taking, aka sketchnotes, coined by designer Mike Rohde.

In this article are tips and further advice from several pundits known in visual note-taking circles. I will express what some may call “the voice of reason,” aka the devil’s advocate.

“Sketchnotes are about listening and drawing, capturing meaningful ideas, not how well you draw,” says Mike Rohde,  author of The Sketchnote Handbook: The Illustrated Guide to Visual Note Taking (Peachpit Press, 2013).

NIST’s picture

By: NIST

Organizations worldwide stand to lose an estimated $9 billion in 2018 to employees clicking on phishing emails. We hear about new phishing attacks regularly from the news and from our friends. So why do so many people still click? NIST research has uncovered one reason, and the findings could help CIOs mount a better defense.

The findings—distilled in the brief video below—reveal that context plays a critical factor in why users click or don’t click on a phishing email. The more the context of the message seems relevant to a person’s life or job responsibilities, the harder it is for them to recognize it as a phishing attack.

Caroline Preston’s picture

By: Caroline Preston

Editor’s note: This story is part of Map to the Middle Class, a Hechinger Report series looking at the good middle-class jobs of the future and how schools are preparing young people for them.

The program had to be a scam. Why would anyone, she wondered, pay her to go to college?

Even after Sarat Atobajeun found information about the program on Harper College’s website, she remained skeptical. A job with a $30,000 salary, plus college tuition and even complimentary textbooks? She called the community college to verify. The Harper receptionist told her it was true: A Swiss-based insurance business with its U.S. headquarters down the street—housed in a behemoth glass building she’d often driven by and puzzled over—had exported its apprenticeship program to the United States.

Multiple Authors
By: Morgan Ryan Frank, Iyad Rahwan

How do workers move up the corporate ladder, and how can they maximize their career mobility? Increased wealth disparity, increased job polarization, and decreases in absolute income mobility (i.e., the fraction of children who earn more than their parents) all suggest that upward mobility is difficult for today’s workers. It’s as if the rungs on the ladder to career success are there for some and absent for others. But who is stuck, and why?

Marc Le Menestrel’s picture

By: Marc Le Menestrel

Let’s say a store has been selling large snow shovels for $15. The morning after a major snowstorm, the store raises its price to $20. Is this acceptable?

A large majority of business people in my seminars answer that yes, it is acceptable to raise the price of shovels after a storm. They invoke the law of supply and demand; they quote the example of people street-selling umbrellas when it rains; they explain that the competitive context would not let them survive otherwise; they blame the customers for not having anticipated the storm, and many other reasons that resemble excuses.

In reality, they don’t really think about whether it is acceptable or not for the store to raise its prices. They react, and then they think about how they can justify their “choice.”

Their reaction mostly comes from an implicit and unconscious identification with the business owner. From this perspective, they expect that raising the price of the shovels will help them make more profit. This is the way they think.

Syndicate content