Six Sigma At Motorola: How Motorola Realizes The Potential Of Its Employees By Fostering A Leadership Culture.

1396 words - 6 pages

Motorola - "all employees at Motorola must consistently strive for a six sigma targetSix Sigma at Motorola:Motorola learned about quality the hard way: by being consistently beaten in the competitive marketplace. When a Japanese firm took over a Motorola factory that manufactured television sets in the United States, they promptly set about making drastic changes in the way the factory operated. Under Japanese management, the factory was soon producing TV sets with 1/20th the number of defects they had produced under Motorola management. In the late 1970s and early 1980s the company responded to the competitive pressure by engaging in a publicity campaign decrying "unfair" competition and calling for political protection solutions. Finally, even Motorola's own executives had to admit "our quality stinks," (Main, 1994) and Motorola decided to take quality seriously. Motorola's CEO at the time, Bob Galvin, started the company on the quality path and became a business icon largely as a result of what he accomplished in quality at MotorolaToday, Motorola is known worldwide as a quality leader. To accomplish its quality and total customer satisfaction goals, Motorola concentrates on several key operational initiatives. At the top of the list is "Six Sigma Quality," a statistical measure of variation from a desired result. In concrete terms, Six Sigma translates into a target of no more than 3.4 defects per million products, customer services included. At the manufacturing end, this requires "robust designs" that accommodate reasonable variation in component parts while providing consistently uniform final products. Motorola employees record the defects found in every function of the business, and statistical technologies are made a part of each and every employee's job.Reducing the "total cycle time"-the time from when a Motorola customer places an order until it is delivered-is another vital part of the company's quality initiatives. In fact, in the case of new products, Motorola's cycle-time reduction is even more ambitious; the clock starts ticking the moment the product is conceived. This calls for an examination of the total system, including design, manufacturing, marketing, and administration.Motorola management demonstrates its quality leadership in a variety of ways, including top-level meetings to review quality programs with results passed on through the organization. But all levels of the company are involved. Non-executive employees contribute directly through Motorola's Participative Management Program (PMP). Composed of employees who work in the same area or are assigned to achieve a specific aim, PMP teams meet often to assess progress toward meeting quality goals, to identify new initiatives, and to work on problems. To reward high-quality work, savings that stem from team recommendations are sharedTo ensure that employees have the skills necessary to achieve company objectives, Motorola spent in excess of $170 million on worker...

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