In the world of lean management and manufacturing, problems are considered opportunities to grow. FastCap, a company I toured, clearly has that principle engrained in the minds of their people.
The day before my visit, the plant had a power outage. While they were able to operate normally in general, they did find some holes in their back-up systems. They discussed the issues in their company-wide employee meeting. One of the operators blurted out,
Let’s not waste a great crisis.
Everyone chuckled and nodded in agreement. Crisis shows us where we’re strong and where we’re weak. Once the crisis passes – for FastCap that meant the power was back on – and we’re not fighting fires anymore – it’s time to let the crisis teach us where we have room to improve.