LESSONS FOR MANUFACTURING SECTOR FROM PIZZA MAKERS

LESSONS FOR MANUFACTURING SECTOR FROM PIZZA MAKERS

Before joining the Bank in 1980 I had worked in M/S JYOTI LTD BARODA for 7 years from 1973 to 1980 where I had learnt a lot.

The recent issue of BUSINESS TODAY Dated 22nd June 2014 has an interesting snippet on the similarities between Manufacturing and Pizza Making. Here is the article for you to read and respond:

LESSONS FROM PIZZA MAKERS

Everybody loves a pizza, including the honchos running manufacturing companies. But is there something the manufacturing sector can learn from pizza makers?

It would seem there is little in common between manufacturing companies and the quick-service restaurant industry, particularly Jubilant FoodWorks that holds the master franchise for Domino’s Pizza in India. Think again.

In both sectors, the nature of work is repetitive, operating procedures are standardized, and precise output and timing are critical. Both also need just-in-time inventory management, offer a tough physical work environment and hire workers with moderate education levels. Sure, there are differences as well. Baking a pizza is simpler than operating a furnace; and the pizza delivery boy is more empowered than a factory worker. If he delivers the pizza late, he can decide whether to make it free. Nevertheless, there is a lot manufacturing companies can learn from Domino’s management practices.

Domino’s employs more than 20,000 people – all directly. But it is easier to manage them because they are all split into smaller groups – one store typically has 25 employees. This, according to Venkatraman Girish, Senior Vice President of Human Resources at Jubilant Food Works, emphasizes the importance of operating in smaller units. Manufacturing companies, he says, perhaps, need to organize workers in smaller work groups where employees realize output, success and failure.

The second lesson is related to identity. All Domino’s employees have a uniform that gives them recognition among their peer groups. That cannot be said of many workers in the manufacturing sector, particularly contract employees. But the most important lesson is perhaps how Domino’s has limited class conflicts within its ranks. This is Domino’s 19th year in India and many of its senior leaders joined the company at low ranks.
“People at the level of deputy general managers have risen from low ranks, like delivering the pizza. There is no class barrier because a big chunk of managers have come from within and rose up the ranks. Roughly half the manager level staff has risen up the ranks within the company,” says Girish.

Everybody in the company is trained to deliver a pizza. Every new employee, whatever level he joins, trains for five days in a restaurant, from taking orders to baking the pizza. The senior management works in a restaurant once a quarter, taking calls from customers and calling them back. On high volume days like December 31, when the highest numbers of pizzas are sold, everybody in the company holes up in restaurants, from morning until close.

If top executives of manufacturing companies dirty their fingers working on machines even once a quarter, that could go a long way in bridging the divide with the “labor class”.

YOUR VIEWS/COMMENTS PLEASE.

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