Tag Archives: Asia

Good Startup Ideas from Startup Weekend JB (Malaysia)

I like all these startup ideas from Startup Weekend JB (Malaysia). I can’t figure out how to comment on their blog (I am guessing Tumbler just eliminates commenting?), so I started this post – and ended up adding much more than I planned on putting in a comment.

All of these ideas are not very technically challenging and pretty much versions of these businesses are already successful around the globe. But creating great user experiences (in apps or on web sites) is often neglected for doing something passable (and local conditions mean the business is a bit different here than it would be somewhere else).

To create a greatly successful startup focusing on great, not adequate, customer experiences is extremely useful. And you can leap ahead of competitors that don’t focus on customer delight.

One of the interesting things from my experience living in Johor Bahru, Malaysia the last few years is that Malaysia has way more entrepreneurial diversity than the USA (in my limited experience). Many of these businesses stay small. But you have entrepreneurs in all sorts of businesses at events in JB. In the USA the events I went to were all software focused (internet businesses etc.).

Here you have people setting up factories, printing companies, beauty entrepreneurs, construction companies, bakers, motel chain (less than a handful of motels so far) etc. going to HackerSpace meetings and Drinks Entrepreneurs, BarCamp etc.. Startup Weekend I do think was very IT focused, even in JB (it is setup to be that way so it isn’t surprising).

There are small business entrepreneurs in the USA, but they don’t go to entrepreneur/ LeanStartup etc. type meetings (in my experience). And they are more limited; so many businesses in the USA really can’t be done easily by some new college graduate. The capital and legal requirements are just so huge you need so much to start that it isn’t something considered in the cool-startup communities (in general – I’m sure there are some things like micro-brew startups etc.). In JB it seems to me fewer than 33% are IT dominated. Though I expect this will increase rapidly. I think there is a real benefit to including non-IT focused people in these communities.

The number of people outside of IT that decide to be entrepreneurs out of school is tiny (it seems to me). In Malaysia it seems much more common. But in general people don’t talk about it as being entrepreneurs they are trying to make a living and setting up their own business to do so is just a natural thing to do.

SmartDining – find local restaurants (mobile app) and order (for take out or dine in).

The app shouldn’t be too hard to do well. The challenges will be working with restaurants, marketing (so often the case) and maybe mapping (finding good suggestion). How to balance efforts well will also be a challenge – you could spend tons of time on many different valuable efforts related to this business. Vote.

Continue reading

Deming Prizes for 2011 go to Companies Based in India, Taiwan and Thailand

image of the Deming Prize medal

The Union Japanese Scientists and Engineers (JUSE) has awarded the Deming Prize to 3 companies in 2011:

Follow the links I included for the companies to see a bit about their management philosophies. As has been the case since 2000, India and Thailand again did well. Between them the are home to 27 of the 38 award winning organizations.

I have moved to Malaysia and have started some work in Singapore helping organization improve management performance, maybe we can get those 2 countries represented in the coming years (this isn’t a short term effort). I may also do some work in other parts of Asia and Australia.

Organizations receiving the Deming Prize since 2000, by country. Prior to 2000, nearly all winners were from Japan:

Country Prizes
India 17
Thailand 10
Japan 7
USA 1
Singapore 1
China 1
Taiwan 1

The 2011 Deming Prize for Individuals went to Mr. Masamitsu Sakurai, Chairman, Ricoh Company, Ltd. (Japan). Previous recipients include: Kaoru Ishikawa, Genichi Taguchi, Shoichiro Toyoda, Hitoshi Kume and Noriaki Kano.

Related: 2010 Deming Prize2009 Deming Prize2008 Deming Prize: Tata SteelDeming Prize 20072006 Deming Prize

Continue reading

Deming Seminar in Singapore: New Philosophy of Management

image of the Deming medal

The W. Edwards Deming Institute is working with the NTUC LearningHub to offer management seminars in Singapore. I will be co-facilitating at several seminars in Singapore with Kelly Allan and Kevin Cahill next month.

The 2 1/2 day Seminar, Deming’s New Philosophy of Management, is open for registration to the public so if you want to join us, sign up (link removed) for the seminar which will be held January 18 to 20, 2011 in Singapore.

In the seminar you will learn the way of thinking taught by Dr. W. Edwards Deming. Those ideas have been used by leading companies around the world and the value of these management ideas is as high today as it has ever been. Applying these ideas will allow your organization to achieve higher quality, lower costs and increased productivity. As regular readers of this blog know I often write about these ideas here.

Seminar Overview
Application of Dr. Deming’s “New Philosophy of Management” gives you the insight to remove barriers to success, increase efficiencies, reduce waste, boost motivation, stimulate innovation and understand your organization and its real capabilities. Some improvements are as simple as stopping current practices and enjoying productivity increases. Others require learning and understanding the four key components of the “New Philosophy of Management:”

The seminar is conducted with facilitators. It is not lecture style and is interactive and significant time is spent in exercises or discussions and their application. The seminar is based on Dr. Deming’s two books on management – Out of the Crisis and The New Economics. It focuses on a philosophy of four components that lead to understanding of how the organization can work as a system, how an organization can learn as it develops, how to get the best out of people, and interpret data.

After the seminar you will have an understanding of the four critical elements of Deming’s “New Philosophy of Management” and how to apply it within your organization. They are:

Who Should Attend
The seminar material is applicable to senior executives and management in every size of business and service organization, education, retail, health care, government and manufacturing. It will benefit those being introduced to Deming’s thinking for the first time as well as those familiar with his philosophy.

Global Manufacturing Data 2007

The updated data from the United Nations on manufacturing output by country clearly shows the USA remains by far the largest manufacturer in the world. UN Data, in billions of current US dollars:

Country 1990 1995 2000 2005 2006 2007
USA 1,041 1,289 1,543 1,663 1,700 1,831
China 143 299 484 734 891 1,106
Japan 804 1,209 1.034 954 934 926
Germany 438 517 392 566 595 670
Russian Federation 211 104 73 222 281 362
Italy 240 226 206 289 299 345
United Kingdom 207 219 228 269 303 342
France 224 259 190 249 248 296
Korea 65 129 134 200 220 241
Canada 92 100 129 177 195 218

See manufacturing data for more countries.

The USA’s share of the manufacturing output of the countries that manufactured over $200 billion in 2007 (the 12 countries on the top of the chart above) in 1990 was 28%, 1995 28%, 2000 33%, 2005 30%, 2006 28%, 2007 27%. China’s share has grown from 4% in 1990, 1995 7%, 2000 11%, 2005 13%, 2006 15%, 2007 16%.

Total manufacturing output in the USA was up 76% in 2007 from the 1990 level. Japan, the second largest manufacturer in 1990, and third today, has increased output 15% (the lowest of the top 12, France is next lowest at 32%) while China is up an amazing 673% (Korea is next at an increase of 271%).
Continue reading

Overview of 5 Nations Health Care Systems

PBS presents a very nice overview of the heath care systems in Japan, United Kingdom, Germany, Taiwan and Switzerland in: Sick Around the World. It is a just a surface view of the overall system but even so does a good job of providing more understanding of the options available to fix the failed system in the USA. The US system costs over 50% more than others and has worse outcome measures than the alternatives (and leaves many without any coverage). And while the alternatives are not perfect the defenders of the status quo make claims about the alternatives are not accurate.

Table combines data from my previous post, International Health Care System Performance, and the PBS website:

Australia Canada Germany Japan Netherlands New Zealand Switzerland Taiwan UK USA
National health spending – Percent of GDP 9.5% 9.8% 10.7% 8.0% 9.2% 9.0% 11.6% 6.3% 8.3% 16.0%
Percent uninsured 0 0 <1 <2 0 0 16

Switzerland, spending 11.6% of GDP on health care, is the 2nd most expensive in the world.

Related: USA Spent $2.1 Trillion on Health Care in 2006Measuring the Health of Nations (USA ranks 19th of 19 nations studied)Drug Prices in the USAUSA Health Care Costs 16% of GDP (2006)Deadly Diseases of Western Management5 Million Lives Campaign

Toyota Building Second Plant in India

Toyota is investing $350 million in a second Indian manufacturing plant. The plant is focused on producing vehicles for the local market – as the Toyota Production System suggests that production be close to the market.

Toyota to invest Rs1,400 crore for “strategic” small car in India

The new plant will have a production capacity of 100,000 units and will become operational by 2010, he added. The company’s current plant has a capacity of 63,000 units a year.

The plant will make the Corolla sedans along with the small cars The company plans to have high level of localisation for the small car by procuring several components and sub-systems from Indian vendors. Primarily the car maker plans to sell the small car in the fast growing domestic market, though some will be exported as well, the company stated.

The Japan-based automaker said last year that it plans to capture 10 per cent of India’s market. In 2007 Toyota sales accounted for a mere 0.6 per cent of the Indian car market

Related: Manufacturing Takes off in IndiaToyota Chairman Comments on India and ThailandTop 10 Manufacturing Countries 2006Indian companies have received as many awards as companies from all other countries combined since 2000Toyota to Build New Plant in India to Make Small CarsTVS Group Director on India – Manufacturing, Economy

Inside Honda’s Brain

Inside Honda’s brain by Alex Taylor III

why is Honda playing with robots? Or, for that matter, airplanes? Honda is building a factory in North Carolina to manufacture the Hondajet, a sporty twin-engine runabout that carries six passengers. Or solar energy? Honda has established a subsidiary to make and market thin-film solar-power cells. Or soybeans? Honda grows soybeans in Ohio so that it can fill up cargo containers being shipped back to Japan. The list goes on. All this sounds irrelevant to a company that built some 24 million engines last year and stuffed them into everything from cars to weed whackers.

Since 2002 its revenues have grown nearly 40%, to $94.8 billion. Its operating profits, with margins ranging from 7.3% to 9.1%, are among the best in the industry.

The wellspring of Honda’s creative juices is Honda R&D, a wholly owned subsidiary of Honda Motor. Based in Saitama, west of Tokyo, R&D engineers create every product that Honda makes – from lawn mowers to motorcycles and automobiles – and pursue projects like Asimo and Hondajet on the side. Defiantly individualistic, R&D insists on devising its own solutions and shuns outside alliances. On paper it reports to Honda Motor, but it is powerful enough to have produced every CEO since the company was founded in 1948.

The engineer in Fukui [Honda’s president and CEO] cannot help but be intrigued by what his former colleagues are up to, and his office is only a few steps away from Kato’s. But even with the CEO just down the hall, says Kato, “We want to look down the road. We do not want to be influenced by the business.”

mistakes like the Insight are also the exception. R&D has provided Honda with a long list of engineering firsts that consumers liked, including the motorcycle airbag, the low-polluting four-stroke marine engine, and ultralow-emission cars.

Related: Toyota as HomebuilderS&P 500 CEOs – More Engineering GraduatesMore on Non-Auto ToyotaAsimo Robot, Running and Climbing StairsApplied ResearchGoogle Engineering Energy

Go Lean to Remain Competitive

Go Lean to Remain Competitive:

Captains of industry should adopt Lean Production Systems, an idea {conceived} by Toyota for its car-making, to transform their plants to efficient ones, for survival in the globalisation era

Sundaram Clayton Limited Brakes Division President C N Prasa.

In 1998 the SCL Brakes Division won the Deming Prize and in 2002 they won the Japan Quality Medal.

Sundaram-Clayton Limited, Mission:

We are committed to being a profitable and socially responsible leading manufacturer of environmentally friendly auto components and sub-systems for customers in markets and to provide fulfillment and prosperity for customers, employees and suppliers.

India has been represented very well among Deming Prize winners the last few years including 3 of 4 winners this year.

I think it will be interesting to see if this is a sign of a broader adoption of such management principles in India. If so, I think that would compliment the software industry in promoting continued economic development in India quite well. And, if so, in 10 years I think we will be hearing much more about manufacturing in India than we do today.

More articles on Management Improvement in India (including several on Sundaram Clayton Limited).

2004 Deming Prize Awardees

2004 Deming Prize announcement – JUSE (Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers)

This year again provided impressive showings by India and Thailand: of the 6 awards 3 went to Indian Companies and 3 went to companies in Thailand. And this is not a fluke, a unit of the TVS group (India) has been awarded in each of the last four years, see, “Deming medal for Lucas TVS and SRF.”

2004 The Deming Prize for Individuals
– Mr. Akira Takahashi, Senior Adviser to the Board, Denso Corporation (Japan)

2004 The Deming Application Prize (alphabetical order)
– CCC Polyolefins Company Limited (Thailand)
Indo Gulf Fertilisers Limited (India)
– Lucas-TVS Limited (India)
– Siam Mitsui PTA Company Limited (Thailand)
– SRF Limited, Industrial Synthetics Business (India) SRF press release – pdf format
– Thai Ceramic Company Limited (Thailand)

In recent years, Thailand and India have been the home to nearly all awardees: 6 of 7 in 2003, 2 of 2 in 2002 and 3 of 4 in 2001. Prior to this new trend, nearly all awardees were based in Japan, the exceptions being:
– Sundaram-Clayton Limited Brakes Division (India) 1998
– AT & T Power Systems (U.S.A.) 1993
– Philips Taiwan, Ltd. (Taiwan) 1991
– Florida Power and Light (USA) 1989

Find online Deming resources: Curious Cat Deming Connections
Full List of Deming Prize Winners