Many industries experience “shoulder periods.” These are the time periods leading up to and away from the peak volumes. Figuring out how to manage these periods can be a difficult task for managers, but it’s also very important for realizing performance improvement gains.
Management system changes often entail tightening up the planning standards that are used to schedule the operations, and then providing managers with tools to control, monitor and report on attainment to the plan.
Implementing change requires re-configuring processes – and modifying the management systems and behaviors that need to accompany them. But as anyone who has ever tried to instill change knows, maintaining those gains can be very difficult
One of the things we look for when we examine organizations is the degree of variability present. The more variability, the harder it is to manage. Variability can be both inherent in the nature of the industry and it can be self-imposed through policy or errors.