Seeing issues in a large scope

Scope, Granularity and Scale

Can you understand and solve a broad or large-scale problem with a high-level, low granularity view? Usually the answer is no. That makes for some major challenges, as we have only a limited capacity to work with many items at the same time. Granular detail across a broad scope is very difficult to fathom. Fortunately, […]

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Software Change-out and April Fools

Why did the company change out their legacy software applications? To get to the other side. This might sound like a pretty lame April Fool’s joke, but actually it’s companies who don’t change out applications who often end up being the fools. Or who don’t execute great program management and change management through a software […]

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Simply See Materials Origin Across Business Networks

Social media has been threatening to penetrate business applications for years, and the simple ones have – only perhaps under different guises. Trading exchanges were that, and now traceability applications bring data together from across a supply chain. What I’ve seen is that to gain traction, shared or social applications must be simple to use […]

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MES in Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 – Obvious and Subtle

The potential benefits of foreseeing the future are pretty obvious. It means you can prepare. Yet what you need to do to prepare for that foreseen future may not be quite so obvious. That is to say, you might need discernment to see subtle differences in approaches that will and won’t be suitable. Industry 4.0 […]

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3D printing a car at IMTS

Is Manufacturing Plant Optimization Obsolete?

What are the implications of 3D printing? Larger than I can imagine, I know. So large that I am asking myself: Will discrete manufacturing plants be replaced by a network of makers? Will I witness the end of manufacturing as I have known it all my life? As 3D printing matures to handle multiple materials […]

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Color 15 Tesselation Justin P

Holistic Supply Chain Planning Finally Gets its Due

Everything is interconnected, and you can’t optimize an entire system unless you take a holistic view. While this is common sense, the more recognized supply chain software providers assembled a portfolio from disparate planning pieces that only integrate at a surface level. Until recently companies with true end-to-end holistic planning and optimization were the upstart […]

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Inside & Outside the box

Outside-the-box Business Applications

Is it time to re-vamp how you manage your enterprise information and business processes? Probably. Most companies are boxed in by their systems today. Nearly every company has an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system and these were critical to establishing business process flows. Yet ERP has some major mismatches with how companies work today. For […]

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The Curious leader leverages his team

The Curious Leader

In this time of great change for manufacturing, leaders must stay curious. While good leadership requires self-confidence and knowledge, a healthy dose of paranoia about what you don’t know is also critical. Leadership means being open to new ideas¬† and actually seeking them out.¬† How? By listening both to the people around you putting your […]

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Getting Comfortable with a New Skill or Topic

How do you go from hearing about something for the first time to feeling comfortable with it? How does the initial uncertainty make you feel? Many of us feel discomfort with things we don’t know. Depending on your outlook, you might get anxious, angry, defensive, frustrated, fearful, embarrassed or just curious when faced with something […]

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Pitcher

Manufacturing Mimics Nature – or tries to at least

Think about the most complex, carefully controlled and fine-tuned systems on the planet. Where did that thought take you? To a high-mix specialty chemicals process? A semiconductor fab? Automotive assembly line? A VOIP system? An industry 4.0 “smart factory” with smart products, equipment, and materials? BZZZZ. Incorrect. These don’t hold a candle to what your […]

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