39 Years Ago I Wrote a Whitepaper on Combining Multiple Performance Improvement Methods

I am ‘the office got several computers for the secretarial staff’ years old.

Back in 1982 I was working at MTEC – Motorola’s Training & Education Center. And something struck me that I wanted to get down on paper and present to MTEC Management.

I had recently seen the NBC Whitepaper TV program called, “If Japan Can Do It, Why Can’t We” about Japan’s Improving Quality – to the detriment of USA companies such as Motorola.

Motorola was trying to become what Likert called a System One organization. You can read a little bit about THAT here in a previous post. They called their efforts the PMP: “Participative Management Program.”

But that effort was stumbling from what I heard from my clients in Manufacturing, Materials and Purchasing as I did my ISD projects across the various Business Sectors (SBUs) and the 30+ manufacturing facilities strewn across North America. Everybody was frustrated it seemed with PMP.

But it seemed to me that we had all the pieces in place – we just needed to merge them all into a whole.

So one weekend in the Home Office I penned my Whitepaper, which the secretaries/administrative assistants typed up.

Because that’s how we did it Back-in-the-Day.

Here it is in the typed/word-processed format of Motorola’s own 4 Star Computer System … after a couple of go-rounds (versions) …

Here is the Original Handwritten Version –

Here is the Final Word Processed Version submitted to my management –

My immediate boss decided to turn my ideas into what he called, The Geary Rummler Do-It-Yourself Consulting Kit.

Or, “Kit” for short.

So there were a series of meeting were held about this, in New Jersey at Rummler’s office, at the MTEC offices in the Motorola HQ building in Schaumberg Illinois, and at my boss’ office in Phoenix.

Here is my boss wearing his T-Shirt at his Phoenix office.

Here Rummler and I sit in Phoenix trying to work out how to bring what has now become The Kit to fruition.

I was influenced by quite a number of “sources” by the spring of 1982 – having been out of college less than 3 years at that point. These included Geary Rummler, Neil Rackham (soon to be of SPIN Selling fame), and the Total Quality Management Movement – especially Deming and Juran.

Plus many other folks, such as Tom Gilbert, Joe Harless, Bob Mager and several other Quality folks that Motorola was following such as Phil Crosby.

I am a Rummler-ite or Rummler-lite

Take your pick.

Geary Rummler had a significant influence on my professional development.

RIP Geary.

And Thank You!

I left Motorola 5 months later.

Here are some prior posts about this effort…

38 Years Ago – My 1st White Paper: Participative Management of the Performance System







I still see Performance Improvement today as a combination of those 3 sets of principles and tools.


One comment on “39 Years Ago I Wrote a Whitepaper on Combining Multiple Performance Improvement Methods

  1. Pingback: Not that it would improve my bottom of the barrel position, but… | EPPIC - Pursuing Performance

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