A System Problem

The conference room was comfortable. New leather chairs and a marble top. Nothing like success to create a little overhead.

Sam had assembled a cast of the brightest minds in the company. Marketing was represented, sales, customer service, production and accounting. Everyone looked armed with official looking reports, charts and graphs, ready to defend the slightest attack.

Sam was good. He wasn’t looking for a scapegoat. He knew the problem wasn’t from someone being lazy, or even a wrong decision. He knew it was more likely that the organization’s system needed some attention.

He began by explaining what he had observed, and asked each member to accurately report the real figures behind the events. Unfortunately, four weeks worth of excess finished goods had translated into an eight-week inventory turn. Something had put the brakes on the market.

“So, take a piece of paper,” Sam began, “and write down your condition of satisfaction for this meeting? What has to happen in the next two hours that will indicate time well spent?”

2 thoughts on “A System Problem

  1. jo weeks

    This is great, Management tool, especially for senior management. When there are so many $$ sitting at a table or in a room for a meeting, especially a 2-hour meeting. this “condition of satisfaction” could be a great tool!!! Thanks for sharing. Hoping our senior management gets ‘wind’ of this šŸ˜‰

  2. Tom Foster

    The most important thing this does is to move the responsibility for the meeting’s success from the manager to the team.


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