Running on luck … the Young Manufacturing exercise

Tonight’s role-playing exercise from the EMOB, page 235 entitled “Upward Communication: Young Manufacturing Company,” illustrated a case where the CEO of the company was absolutely clueless and his management team was running amok. Apparently, if you order 1 million gaskets and find out they are defective, this can be the ultimate test of a just-in-time inventory system. And when your CEO doesn’t know that you’ve switched to a just-in-time inventory system, and you commit all of the companies resources to trying to rework the product of a defective supply chain, you get the Young Manufacturing Company.

I had the great misfortune of playing Roy Conti, manager of quality control and a direct report to Bob Young, the president of the company. And apparently my character has still not gotten over the fact that his son was not hired by the company, and that instead they hired Fran Kurowski. Now, Roy has been with the company from the very beginning ( nine years ago) and from the looks of things he’ll be there till the bitter end. It turns out that the genius in charge of production, Donna Kelly, specializes in obfuscation but not so much in production.

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