Originally Posted by Grafika
It sounds like you have many of the checks and balances you should have for a print production process in place already. What doesn't seem to be happening is your employees aren't learning from their mistakes.
You said you meet every morning to discuss the day's jobs, set priorities, and discuss ideas. I would add one additional weekly meeting, perhaps first thing Monday morning, where you and your team discuss the errors, by both department/person and step in the process.
You need to be specific - what steps are creating or allowing errors to occur, is it a specific person that creates the error or can anyone make the mistake, what job(s) have the most errors. The more specific you can be, and the more data you can capture, the better you will be at identifying the root cause for each error.
First, determine what to track, then figure out how to measure it, then determine what is acceptable for performance, and finally track your performance metrics. Once things go out of acceptable parameters determine WHY and fix that.
People need to see, visually, where and when problems occur. You can talk about isolated issues all day long, but once you start piling them up and showing how much went awry each week/month/job/ step/etc. it becomes much more difficult to ignore.
Mistakes suck. I truly believe that in life we all assume good intent and nobody wants to make a mistake. With that being said if people are doing their job everything is not always as you would like it to be.
First off you can't wear all the hats and grow the business. There are an elite few that pull it off but for the rest of us we need a good supporting cast. Give me a B plan with an A team all day long. I suspect you have some underlining issues within your company.
Are you in a payscale with your employees that is realistic for the market you are in? If your pay is not up to speed don't expect for most people to put in but so much effort. It just doesn't work that way and never will. You get what you pay for. People should always try to do a good job whether they are folding someone's Brochure or cleaning toilets. Once again, that is my opinion.
Then there is the bait trick with the Bonus program for low errors. I have actually seen that work quite well at times. It has ranged from affecting a bonus for all employees based on rework to those who standout in production receiving a nice giftcard for them and their spouse to a nice Restaurant. Tread lightly as not all months let you allow for this in the budget and if employees start zoning in on the extra incentives that can create conflict within the company.
It sounds like you have spent some time creating some safety nets in production. The big problem that shows signs of weakness is a redundancy in the type of rework. That can come from lack of training, lack of overall knowledge, personel friction, substance abuse, trying to do things with equipment that is not realistic, and people just not giving a crap.
Maybe get the whole company together for a meeting and explain to them that it is an exciting time for the company with growth. Make them aware that actions have rewards and consequences. And ultimately it may come down to you getting a strong Production Manager to release some of that pressure off you. It would allow you to concentrate on building the business. At the end of the day, we all makes mistakes. We learn and we get smarter in what we do. If you don't have that energy in your shop, then evaluate the staff and be ready to make adjustments whether it bothers you personally or not if it will help you grow the business.
What, besides money, can be a motivational resource to reduce mistakes?
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Does pride in craftsmanship count these days?
With apologies in advance to the women in the forum!
Originally Posted by Al Ferrari
Not really. Most employees of shops I know have taken pay cuts, lost jobs, lost benefits, and generally feel like a number. There is always a percentage of people who will charge on and take pride in their work but those days are long gone from what I have seen in the last 5 years.
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