“Come on, I think you are splitting hairs,” Corina said. “Everyone knows that the goal of the company is to make money, and the goal of the plant floor is to make as much product as efficiently as possible.”
“Is it, really?” I asked.
Corina stopped. She was trying to be defensive without being defensive. Rarely works.
“Has there ever been a time,” I continued, “where you were doing such a good job on the plant floor that you produced more than the company was selling?”
“Oh, all the time. We always produce to the sales forecast that Joe puts together. And his forecast is always wrong. I mean, right now, is a good example. If you had been here last week, you would have seen stuff stacked up all over the place. We even had three semi-trucks in the parking lot loaded with finished goods.”
“Where is it all now?”
“Well, there was a warehouse that we were trying to sell. I got lucky and found out in time to stop it, so we moved all the excess inventory there. Now, that’s utilization of resources.”
“Who knows about this?” I probed. “Does Sam, your VP of Ops know?”
“Yeah, he was down here a couple of weeks ago and saw all the inventory. He looked concerned, but I told him we were working on it. When he came down a couple of days later, I had all the stuff taken care of. He looked relieved.”
Our conversation became quiet.