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54 SMT Magazine • August 2015 FeAture summAry by Stephen Las Marias i-connecT007 This month, our three magazines here at I- Connect007—The PCB Magazine, The PCB Design Magazine, and SMT Magazine—are all focused on the challenge around quality and process con- trol. We surveyed companies involved in design, fabrication, and assembly, as well as OEMs and suppliers. Their major issues boiled down to four: poor process control, poor training of employees around quality, an inability to quickly identify where and how waste is being created, and poor technical support from suppliers (Table 1). David Dibble of New Agreements Inc. has written "War on Failure," an article that aims to provide answers to these issues. He notes that while the quality programs of the past have brought us to this point in the evolution of our businesses, we clearly need more. In the war on failure, Dibble points out that we must move beyond traditional thinking and problem solv- ing techniques to something new. Quality Programs are not Working After more than 30 years of familiarity with quality programs that morphed into TQM and on to Six Sigma, Lean, Lean Sigma and others, one thing can be said with some conviction: Most quality programs implemented over the past three to four decades are underperform- ing or outright failing in Western culture com- panies. Even where they have been somewhat successful, lack of sustainability is rampant. In his article, Dibble also writes about the four primary reasons why most qual- ity programs are underperforming: programs mentality; a lack of user-friendly tools; the absence of paradigm shifts; and leaders who don't grow. Dibble explains that the war on failure is really a war on poor systems and non-systems- based thinking of leadership and management. Decades of data show us that more than 90% of the problems we experience in the workplace are a function of the systems in which people work, not the efforts of people. Non-systems- thinking leaders and managers tend to focus on people as the source of problems. It is also a war on leaders and managers who don't value people or don't know how to set up their peo- ple to be most successful in their jobs. Because without knowledge of systems and systems improvement, how can any leader or manager know how to set up his or her people for suc- cess, quickly and sustainably solve problems, or manage anything? Non-systems-based leaders and managers do their best, but their best is far from optimum. It doesn't have to be that way, says Dibble. There is a whole new way of leading and managing, a whole new way of being in the workplace that wins the war on failure through quality systems and tools, systems thinking and a willingness to grow beyond more-better-different and the deadly status quo. To read David Dibble's article, check out the August 2015 issue of The PCB Magazine. SMT "War on Failure" in the August Issue of The PCB Magazine Table 1: Based on our survey, the above are the key challenges when it comes to quality and process control. 54 SMT Magazine • August 2015

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