What’s on your list? Lists?
Holidays provide a great time for reflection. Santa checking his list started me thinking…

Didn't know that Santa was into over-inspection
As a quality guy, I didn’t know that Santa was into over-inspection

Here is our list of “to be given”

  1. To our customer’s- Zero Defects, 100% on time, delightful answers and best in class service
  2. To our suppliers- Sufficient lead time and clear requirements on the specification and purchase order.
  3. To our employees- Sincere appreciation and offers of further training
  4. To our community- Continuing to be great citizens and networking

And our “Wish List”

  1. From our customers- Orders with sufficient lead times and clear specifications
  2. From our suppliers- the same treatment that we give our customers
  3. From our employees- attention to safety and their best efforts
  4. From our community- respect for the magic that our people and processes accomplish that makes a difference in everyone’s lives.

What’s on your list?
Need help with creating and using lists? There’s a great book for that:

Maybe a great gift Idea for some of your key performers...
Maybe a great gift Idea for some of your key performers…

Checklist Manifesto Amazon
Savage Chickens

The medical industry will continue to develop new products, require new capabilities from their suppliers, and maintain their drive for continuous improvement in technology, costs, and quality.
Production of precision parts for medical applications is constantly changing. More challenging materials, geometries, and ways to assure  conformance / performance are what’s ahead in this market.
What  are the keys to meeting these challenges if this is your market?
Key #1- Technology
Technology is certainly a key part of a sustainable commercial strategy. With tolerances, finishes, and geometries standard that were unheard of in other markets years ago, modern equipment is a must- capable, productive, precisely controlled equipment.
Key #2- Zero Defects not just Zero PPM.
Zero PPM tells us about your process.  Or Processes. Zero Defects is a condition of your products. In the surgery, they don’t  have the ability to analyze your ppm. They need defect free. Zero Defects. And that means anticipating and preventing latent defects… so close communication with design is a must, as well as process control and understanding.
Key #3- Knowledge and Training
Knowledge and Training not just for operators.  Engineering, Programming, Toolmakers, Quality Assurance  as well as Operators all need upgraded skills to successfully manufacture  complex geometries from  materials such as Titanium and Stainless  Steels  such as 316L. Simple form tooling is no longer adequate for the complex forms now being generated by whirling or interpolation of milling cutters. This requires higher skills and process knowledge.
Which of these is most important?
If any of these is missing, it would be a showstopper for your medical market business. They are all important. But if one had to be ranked most important, I would say that it would be knowledge and training. With a knowledgeable and well trained crew, you could find the technology and reinvent the mistake proof processes needed to succeed in the business.
Without knowledge and skills, all you would really have is a technology showroom or museum.
What do you think? Is knowledge and training first among equals? Or is it silly to rank any of these as more important?