Write a 500 word paper answering; Analysis of Business Operations Using Hoshin Kanri Planning There are seven management and planning tools that have their origins in the fields of operations research. They originated from the researches carried out by the Japanese during World War II and were performed to ensure total controls on quality. The seven tools utilized were the affinity diagram, interrelationship digraphs, tree diagrams, prioritization matrixes, matrix diagrams, process decision program charts and the activity network diagrams (Hutchins 25). The tools that are familiar to me are the first four listed tools whereas the latter three are new to me. The management tool of my choice will be the affinity diagram when it comes to applying one of them in my business which deals with the sales and marketing of various products.
The use of the affinity diagram greatly requires the utilization of team efforts. It therefore requires the complete attention of the whole team that is operating in the business. The importance of utilizing the diagram in my business arises from the fact that there is a lot of information generated. The team therefore requires to sort through this information to come up with the most effective measures of increasing a products sale. It is also applicable since the answers required are not just obvious to all the team members working on a presented problem. The solutions that are normally adopted come from the general consensus reached by all the team members. The tool is vital since it helps in establishing connections that were previously invisible between the information collected (Hutchins 56). It also greatly assists in the brainstorming of the causes and the solutions to various problems being experienced especially in situations where there is little information availed.
The business benefits in a variety of ways through the use of the affinity diagram. This is because the diagram assists in making breakthroughs in various problems occurring and it also enables the establishment of greater teamwork activities. The diagram additionally helps in revealing relationships between various pieces of information and building of greater skills of critical thinking within my business team. The creation of these skills within the business greatly assists in solving the problems that our clients forward to us through the development of the most cost effective along with efficient solutions. The use of the affinity diagram has enabled the team members within the business to develop better communication skills when dealing with any problems that are brought to the company. This move has enabled the business to remain profitable and on course in achieving the set objectives. It also allows for the complete participation and contribution of all team members in the development of solutions along with the decision making processes within the business.
In order to effectively utilize the diagram and achieve the above benefits in the business, I have to ensure that the sales along with the marketing solutions development team are comprised of the appropriate team members. This will be achieved by staffing the team with members who are qualified and have the required skills. The problems at hand are then described in full for clarification purposes to the team members and followed by the carrying out of a brainstorming exercise. This is done so as to positively identify the challenges and responses that the team needs to address. All the ideas generated are then recorded on a posting note book for the eventual sorting of the notes in groups of three to four members. This activity is carried out silently as a consensus is reached among the team members. Finally, a summary posting for each participating group is created for the adoption of the best implementable decisions.
Hutchins, David, C. Hoshin Kanri: The Strategic Approach to Continuous Improvement, 2008.
Hampshire: Gower Publishing, Ltd.