Back to basics = corporate transformation

In maintenance and reliability, the transformation of performance isn’t about new tools and methods. It is about doing the basics right.

I’ve been speaking with corporate business transformation leaders, and it seems that many of them have seen their transformation programs put on hold. In one case, that program was put on hold in favor of getting back to basics.

I am shaking my head in wonderment at that. Perhaps they didn’t know what they were doing to achieve the transformation in the first place? Perhaps packaging the essentials of getting back to basics as a “transformation” made it a cost cutting target when markets soften and the cost cutters take over. If they only knew that transforming was about getting back to basics, and it will cut costs!

Hmm: what does that say about internal communications when it comes to our M&R field? That’s another topics altogether.

Managing the change, whether it is back to basics or some other new technology being introduced is always challenging. In the M&R field the biggest challenges are seldom technical – we know what we should be doing already. But we don’t always do it. We need to transform behaviors, processes, and more importantly, the interactions among processes and people, to actually return to doing the right things (which we already know), the right way (which we also know).

In M&R the challenge is that these changes involve multiple business functions. For instance, you can’t improve maintenance planning and scheduling without the involvement of stores, purchasing and operations. It’s that multi-function participation, in a siloed organization that makes the transformation so difficult. Organizations are not structured to handle that sort of change. Arguably, they are purposely designed to resist that change. After all, if they were set up correctly in the first place, why change them? But were they?

You can get some insights into the sort of problems that need to solved and some idea of how to solve them in my new book, “Uptime for Executives” (click the title to be taken to the bookstore for the EBook). Hard copy book to follow.