Another Maytag Story

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Chicago Tribune news : Business:

This is a tough spot to be in. Ideally, you'd like to grow your way into increased efficiency — avoid hiring instead of letting people go. But if the choice is to sacrifice some jobs to save the rest, wow, that's a real tough and unenviable leadership challenge to face.

“Making full use of a Japanese manufacturing philosophy called Kaizen, management and labor worked together to make the plant more productive and profitable. There was plenty of grumbling as managers asked workers to think of ways to eliminate their own jobs. But incremental changes in the way things were done led to major savings. And as the appliance business grew, increasing production, Herrin managed to keep most of its jobs.”

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