The conversations that took place at the start of the project were interesting; we reviewed the targets that were set for the production rates within the project.
The targets were not shared with the production team and not accurate; you can imagine why we were having a conversation about bring a project back on track!
Of course, this could have been a conversation with any number of businesses - this is a situation that I see time and time again.
Production targets are not solely for factories that make repeat products. Targets are there to help people focus on what level of achievement is required from the task at hand; it gives context to how performance should look like with regards to the speed of production.
Ok , some targets are unrealistic in the wrong way - expecting to get more produced than is possible with the current process. But, this is not a reason to not set targets in the first place.
In this particular case (and others I recall) a few quick calculations told us how fast we needed to go in order to achieve the project delivery. From this we could work backwards and re-design the process so that it was achievable.
It isn't good luck, it is being realistic and doing the right kind of planning.
If you have production deliveries, or project deadlines, being missed and don't have meaningful targets in your business (that your teams understand) then perhaps it is time to take another look.
Author of Business Process Re-Engineering
P.S. If you are looking for some more ideas in this area then check out my e-book on 'Takt Time' - available on Amazon and iBooks.
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