Phil Hauck's TEC Blog

Saturday, October 28, 2017

On China's Potential ...

Worry all you want about China and its future economic and political impact, but consider this:
Already, China is …
      •  In Top 3 nations for investment in virtual reality, autonomous vehicles, 3-D printing, robotics, drones and artificial intelligence.
      •  The world’s largest e-commerce market, with 40% of value of transactions.
      •  In mobile payments, has 11 times the transaction value of the U.S.
      •  In 2016, the three huge internet giants in China accounted for 42% of all venture capital investment, compared to the 5% total of Amazon, Facebook, Google and Netflix.  They also made 35 overseas deals, compared with 20 by the US biggies.
Source:  McKinsey Global Institute

Contrast this performance with the newly-announced government desire to control more and more of what's happening.  Indeed, in case you missed it, the government intends to begin "rating" each individual on the level of patriotism he/she shows ... formally including everyone beginning in 2020 ... based on participation in various kinds of government-suggested activities.

Takeaways from Manufacturers First Conference ...

This past week, I attended the Manufacturing First Expo sponsored by the N.E.W. Manufacturers Alliance at the KI Center, which had about 100+ exhibitors … and attended several of their presentations/workshops.  Among my takeaways:

•  Lindquist Machine Co., a 110-employee equipment manufacturer.  CEO Mark Kaiser, with consultant Lee Bouche, is in a multi-year effort to create a truly integrated Intentional Culture.  The major elements are in, and 2017 is dedicated to getting every employee to understand how to conduct “Crucial Conversations,” using the Patterson/Grenny-authored book of the same name.  Many plant floor employees, and even some leaders, aren’t readers or communicators, so it’s sometimes a challenge, but they are persisting.  Think of the cultural/morale/performance impact when a entire workforce is being trained in practical communication techniques!

•  Some great quotes and points, cited by Lee Bouche:
Employees’ Basic Needs:  Respect, Learning, Challenge and Inclusion!
Gruenter/Whitaker:  “The culture of any organization is shaped by the worst behavior the leader is willing to tolerate.”
David Couper   “Employees work harder for Cause than for Cash!”  Pay and benefits don’t make it anymore; they’re threshold.
From the book, Never By Chance, Aligning People and Strategy thru Intentional Leadership:  “One of the most important obligations as a leader is to create a compelling vision for the company and then create a culture to achieve that vision.”

•  From Melinda Morella-Olson, Imaginasium, on how to reach out to employees:
Have a Careers Page on your website, as Plexus does.
Look at Manitowoc Co.’s “Employer Brand” approach on its website.

•  Final Takeaways proposed by the three panelists:
Melinda Morella-Olson:  Get a feeler your Employees’ Experience.  What’s driving them to come to work every day?
Steve Hirt, Optima:  De-Select from your choices.  Don’t keep trying to do more just because you can.
Fred Johnson, InitiativeOne:  YOU drive the conflict.  Have the conversation, but in a spirit of respect and kindness.  Don’t let the conflict drive you, creating discomfort.

•  NOVO:  Physician-Led HealthCare.  I’ve seen their signs, but wondered who they are and what they do.  Because sick care costs and delivery challenges are such a problem these days, I attended … and founder Kurt Kubiak explained what they’re doing.  They began in 2015, after he spent six years with Plexus’ world-class manufacturing (and 6 sigma mentality) and then at Fox Valley Orthopedics.  His mission:  To speed up the trend towards “price bundling” while providing a more satisfactory patient experience … primarily for self-insured companies.  Today, he has bundled price arrangements with specialists in Cardiology, Orthopedics, Hematology/Oncology, and some in primary care and rehab.  They develop deals at much lower total costs (30% lower he says) than state averages.
Of interest:  To invent employees to use their doctors, they provide cash payments (often $2,000) to the employees … and even pay travel from remoter areas.
It’s a great idea, and a struggle to get inroads … because the major health systems won’t use them and are much slower to embrace the bundled pricing ideas, though they’re making progress.
They also do Workers’ Comp work.
How to make inroads into fully-insured companies, hoping the insurance companies will recognize the cheaper cost structure and reward with lower premiums … or at least lower premium increases?  And how would you know?