Category Archives: Business

Market Segmentation – Psychographic Method

Market segmentation is definitely one of the most significant parts of the marketing process. In this article I will examine the car industry in the UK. We will mostly concentrate on the psychographic method of the segmentation. The weaknesses and strengths of the method will be discussed here. I will also look at several other market segmentation methods in the car industry.

Market segmentation is an essential part of the marketing process. It allows firms to allocate their market into groups that have the same similarities which are relevant for decision making in the marketing strategy. Then firms can target their market to serve it effectively, they can differentiate the market, define the opportunities and threats and tailor the marketing mix. To be useful, segments selected should be measurable, substantial, accessible, differentiable and actionable. The market can be segmented in different ways; the three most popular techniques used are: behavioural segmentation which analyse benefit sought, purchase occasion, purchase behaviour, usage and perception and beliefs; the second is psychographic segmentation which analyse the lifestyle and the personality of consumers and the third is profile segmentation which base its researches on demographic, socio-economic and geographic variables.

Researches show that there is no exact definition for psychographics The basic basis of psychographic research is that the more firms know and understand about their customers the more effectively they can communicate to them. Psychographic research can identify similar values, attitude, and lifestyle or personality groups, but the two main variables used in psychographic segmentation are the lifestyle and the personality of the customer: Personality is an individual’s pattern of character that influences behavioural responses such as self-confidence, dominance, sociability. This variable is important to be understood because people tend to see themselves in a way and purchase products to satisfy their self-concept so people see them in the way they want. Lifestyle is a person’s pattern of living as expressed in this or her interests, opinions and activities. It is considered to be a rich descriptor of people buying patterns. Often, people buy brands because those brands relate to their way of living. For example a successful businessman in his late thirties will buy a BMW because the image the brand shows in its advertisement is power, success and high standard of living. Psychographics are necessary to firms because they can investigate into specific product category and brand decisions by consumers and can be used to paint the big picture of consumer lifestyle.

Psychographics has proven to be a very useful tool for organisations in their marketing research. It identifies target markets that could not be isolated using only demographic variables. Psychographics are designed to measure the consumer’s predisposition to buy a product, the influences that stimulate buying behaviour, and the relationship between the consumer’s perception of the product benefits and his/her lifestyle, interests and opinions. Often researchers have turned to psychographics because of the limitation encountered in demographics. An advantage of psychographics is that it describes segments in terms directly relevant to advertisement campaign and market planning decisions of organisations.

It has also appealed marketers for its power to combine the richness of “motivational research” with the statistical sophistication of computer analyses and, provide corporate strategists with rich descriptive details for developing marketing strategy; it has the ability to give marketers a big image of the consumer’s lifestyle. There is also the appealing advantage that psychographic segments which are developed for markets in one geographic location are generalizable to market in other geographic locations. Psychographics are essential for discovering both the explicit and the hidden psycho-social motives that so often spell the difference between acceptance or rejection of the brand.

But psychographics have limitations. Researchers have found reliability problems: first there are no standardized methods to evaluate the stability of results of psychographic techniques and incertitude in this area weakens predictive power. Therefore it will throw doubts in whether the segment and market targeted are reliable or not. The main problem is that psychographics attempt to measure intangible and diffuse concepts, values and attitudes are not easy to measure as every single person has a different personality and consequently have different opinions and interests. It has also been point out by that there is little cross-study evidence on reliability so findings cannot be compared and improved.

The car industry in the United Kingdom is very large but is resumed by two monopolies: the first one is a monopoly in favour of Ford which owns most of the leading brands. The second is another monopoly which is described as a “complex monopoly situation arising from the selective and exclusive distribution system used by most car suppliers in the United Kingdom. ” by the United Kingdom Parliament.

The UK has the biggest used car market in Europe: of the 26 million cars on the British road only 2 million have been bought new in the past twelve months (United Kingdom Parliament (1998)

Jaguar creates cars for customers that are seeking distinctive saloons and sports cars which deliver “stimulating performance and captivating style”. They have built an image for their cars which corresponds to what their potential buyers want to identify themselves with. The company is seeking to reflect the individuality of its consumers. Its image is one of luxury, sport and freedom to inspire people. Jaguar uses psychographics since a big part of the customer’s purchase decision process is based on values, self-concept and attitudes. Jaguar need to know its customers, their personality and their self-concept to create a car up to their expectation and reflect the lifestyle they have.

Volvo is another brand of car that has a very different target market. Volvo uses psychographics to segment their market. They create cars aiming mainly at “modern families”. They analyse what are the attitude and values of families towards cars, what are the lifestyle of today’s families: research showed that families were going away for holidays and needed big cars that are able to be reliable and provide comfort for the whole family. It has been found that today, families go to the beach but also to the mountain. So Volvo created cars that allowed families to purchase car to suit their lifestyle. They also had to analyse the personality and the self-concept of those families. A family that want freedom, that is adventurous. And this is reflected in Volvo’s advertising campaign. So when people watch those advertisements they can rely on it and identify themselves with the image they are giving out.

Other methods of segmentation are used in the UK car industry such as demographics or geographic. But often those methods, particularly in the car industry, need to be supplemented with other data, even if some researchers such as Ziff affirmed that “as demographic is based on the ground that demographic groups are relatively homogenous, it does not need psychographics to distinct customer’s behaviour. ” Demographics can turn up objective facts such as tell that the target customer owns a car but it will not be able to tell why the person bought the car; this “why” is told by psychographics. In order to be successful, the car industry must know its consumers: their age, their sex, their marital status, their income, their purchase behaviour such as if they are brand loyal or if they are innovators.

Jaguar keep record of every single client and follow them for up to four years to know everything about their satisfaction, their complaint, so they are able to measure the number of clients that are brand loyal. Both Volvo and Jaguar saw a new target market in women
and developed design to satisfy their wants. In order to serve this new and growing market, identified through demographics, those firms will need to use psychographics because women have different attitudes, values, personalities and lifestyle than men. They will also need to know what their expectations are and what issues they think are most important when they buy a car. For example, women may be more focused on safety and design while men may be more careful about their image and the performance of the car.

Mary Anne Winslow is a member of Essay Writing Service
counselling department team and a dissertation writing consultant. Contact her to get free counselling on custom essay writing.

Registered Respiratory Therapist Job Description, Schooling, Exam

Individuals who make the decision to work in a registered respiratory therapist job need to know the occupational requirements in order to pursue this career path. A registered respiratory therapist is referred to as being a RRT. These people are responsible for the evaluation and treatment of patients with lung disorders.

Being a RRT, you will test patients for lung abnormalities, setting up and monitoring ventilator equipment, helping patients with rehabilitative exercises, and the measuring of patients lung capacity.

You will give intensive treatment to patients who might have a variety of chronic lung diseases such as cystic fibrosis and emphysema.

In order to become a registered respiratory therapist, you must first find a school in order which to study. You’ll have to either complete a two year associates degree or a four year bachelors degree in order to be in this occupational career.

By the time schooling is all done, you will have finished the four year bachelors degree from an accredited institution but there are programs and at home studies that can get a person started.

At the end of schooling, a person has a choice to sit for one national exam that will make them a certified respiratory therapist (CRT). After passing this exam, then you can sit for two additional exams in order to become a registered respiratory therapist.

The internet is the most used place in order to find the right schooling to become an RRT. There are many web sites on different schools that you will be able to contact that have this occupational career path listed. After you find several, all it takes is a phone call to find out further information.

Once all schooling is finished to become a registered respiratory therapist, in order to start your career and get a job, you must be licensed. To qualify for licensing, you must graduate from an accredited university and pass the CRT exam.

Next you must pass the RRT exam. These exams are an intensive objective measurement of the essential knowledge and skills and also abilities that are required to be a registered respiratory therapist.

There is also the NBRC test that has to be taken. . This test is standard for licensure in the 48 states that regulate the registered respiratory therapist profession. source : Certrespiratorytherapis dot com

Get a free guide to registered respiratory therapist job
, and training, as well as respiratory therapist salary range at Certrespiratorytherpist dot com

Small Business Marketing Strategy – A Blink Lesson #1

This is Article one of six in a series of lessons for small business marketers from Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink.

Six articles may seem a bit much to review one book, but Blink is worth it. Malcolm Gladwell’s newest book is about first impressions-specifically, about the first Two Seconds a person encounters new data.

Because Blink deals with First Impressions, learning the mechanisms behind a ‘blink’ can have huge payoffs for the small business marketer. As Gladwell writes (p. 241):

“This is the gift of training and expertise-the ability to extract an enormous amount of meaningful information from the very thinnest slice of experience. To a novice, that incident would have gone by in a blur. But it wasn’t a blur at all. Every moment-every blink-is composed of a series of discrete moving parts, and every one of those parts offers an opportunity for intervention, for reform, and for correction. ”

The above quote describes an encounter between a police officer and a young man with a gun. The police officer is the person who has the “training and expertise”, but when we look at our customers we see that all their so-called “snap decisions” about purchasing a product from you-or not purchasing a product from you-are also the results of their own ‘blinks’.

Those of you who’ve read our articles before know how much we enjoy and admire Gladwell’s first book, The Tipping Point. But why spend six articles examining this new work? The answer is simple: each section of Blink reveals vitally important lessons for the small business owner and marketer.

Consumers are generally very adept at buying and sorting through advertising hype. Much of Blink examines the ability of experts to make extremely good decisions or arrive at spot-on conclusions in those first two seconds.

You probably see elements of this skill of the specialist in your own industry. Doesn’t your accumulated experience sometimes enable you to evaluate certain aspects unique to your field in a blink? Products and procedures that were mysterious when you were a rookie in the industry now make sense and have become such a part of your experience that you don’t even think about how you process some of your decisions.

Well, consumers have been buying their whole lives-they are experts at it. The more we can learn about how our customers make decisions, the more we can adjust our own small business marketing efforts to fit their style of evaluating.

Chapter One in Blink explores a mental process called ‘thin slicing’. As you read this book-and we emphatically encourage you to go buy it and read each chapter and then look at some of our comments-please understand Gladwell’s definition from page 23: ““Thin-slicing” refers to the ability of our unconscious to find patterns in situations and behavior based on very narrow slices of experience. ”

OK, it’s a good definition, and a catchy phrase. But you may ask yourself-‘How do I use this in my small business?’

Well just a few pages later, on p. 32, Gladwell details how an expert, John Gottman, has discovered that one factor-Contempt-is the #1 predictor if a marriage will survive or not. Later, Gladwell supplies us with another example drawn from the medical and legal professions; a single factor-A doctor giving respect to patients-is the key determinant of whether or not a patient will sue their doctor for malpractice. And there is a dominant indicator that shows if the doctor gives respect to the patient: tone of voice.

These are two powerful examples of how experts who have enormous experience with a certain set of human behavior have been able to discover one small yet critical indicator of how people will behave.

And it’s really no different for your small business. As you read through Blink you’ll see several examples of how the experience of experts can uncover key indicators that can then be taught to people who aren’t specialists. These non-experts can become very good at thin slicing a particular behavior, because they know what traits or indicative behaviors to look for. Even a casual observer can tell if a person’s tone of voice is respectful or domineering.

Many small business owners find it almost impossible to pass on to their employees all their experience-but how could they? It’s taken you years to really learn your industry, and your customer. But if you can teach your staff how to identify the really important signals a customer sends, and then how to react to those signals to either make the sale or service the customer, you’ll arm your people on the frontlines with a powerful weapon in the war against lost sales and unhappy customers. If you can teach your employees what elements of the client purchase process are most important to thin slice, you will gain an edge over your competition.

Remember: Brand (who you are) + Package (your Face to the Customer) + People (customers and employees) = Marketing Success.

© 2006 Marketing Hawks

Craig Lutz-Priefert is President of Marketing Hawks
, a firm providing essential marketing vision for small business. Marketing Hawks also sponsors the ongoing small business adventures of entrepreneur Crystal Trino at the JourneyToday website.

Flea Market Vendors: How To Start Selling At Flea Markets

Flea market vendors have been seeing increasing sales as more and more customers shop at flea markets. In the past, flea markets were seen as places to buy used goods, or places to simply spend a free day at.

But now flea markets are seen by many shoppers as sources for their consumer products, at substantial savings off their regular prices.

You can take profit from this consumer trend by setting up as a flea market vendor.

To become a flea market vendor you will first need to have a resellers tax ID number. You should speak to an attorney or accountant to see what you need to get started.

Most flea markets will guide you in this process, since it is in their interest that you start renting a booth at their flea market.

Once you have the proper licenses, you will want to decide on what type of merchandise to sell.

Flea markets can also be of help in this regard. You can ask the management of the flea market what products they feel will sell well.

They should tell you what products are not being sold, or what products can be sold more of.

You can also focus on the basic products that all flea market shoppers need, like T-Shirts, socks, underwear, towels, toothpaste, soap, etc.

As long as your prices are cheap compared to local stores, and to those of other flea market vendors, you should be able to sell those items.

Most flea market vendors stumble when they try to sell either novelty items, or unique esoteric products.

Stay to the basics and your flea market business should prosper.

You should obtain a list of wholesalers who carry the items you want to sell. Narrow down the list to wholesalers who specifically cater towards flea market vendors.

These wholesalers will have experience in what products will sell well at the flea market.

You can use search engines such as www.wholesalecentral.com and www.wholesalequest.com to compile a list of wholesalers.

Stay away from membership sites, since most wholesalers are listed openly online.

Your next step is to jump in. Over analysis will only discourage you from selling at the flea market. Instead of focusing on how much you can make, you need to focus on selling and building up your flea market business. Make sure you start your first day at the flea market with a full assortment of merchandise. This will make a great impression on customers, and will help you sell a good amount of products.

Donny Lowy is the CEO of the following wholesale and closeout businesses.

http://www.closeoutexplosion.com

http://www.wholesalecloseoutforum.com

http://www.wholesalequest.com

Total Productive Maintenance: The Way Of Excellence

Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) is a maintenance program which includes a newly described concept for keeping in up to date conditions of plants and equipment. The goal of any Total Productive Maintenance program is to reduce losses attached to equipment maintenance or, in other words, keep equipment generating only good product, as fast as promising with no unexpected downtime and at the same time, increasing employee morale and job satisfaction.

TPM carries maintenance into a basic and significant role in to the business. It is no longer considered as a non-profit movement. The goal is to hold catastrophe and unplanned maintenance to a lowest level and to confirm the machinery and equipment availability to manufacture products for the end customer. By reducing rework, slow operating equipment and downtime, maximum value is added at the lowest cost. The basic purpose of TPM is to execute ‘perfect manufacturing’.

TPM – History

TPM is a pioneering Japanese model. While preventive maintenance was established in Japan, the origin of TPM can be emerged. However some belief is that the theory of preventive maintenance was taken from USA. Nippondenso was the foremost company to commenced preventive maintenance in 1960 for their plant. Preventive maintenance is the perception wherein, workers created goods applying machines and the maintenance group was devoted with work of looking after those machines, however with the moderation of Nippondenso, maintenance became a setback as further maintenance personnel were needed. So the management determined that the habitual maintenance of equipment would be operated by the operators. Maintenance group took up only essential maintenance works.

Thus with preventive maintenance Nippondenso also added Autonomous maintenance by production operators. For enlightening consistency in the equipment the maintenance team arranged equipment modification and ultimately it leads to maintenance prevention. Hence the Productive maintenance originated due to preventive maintenance with maintenance prevention and its maintainability improvement. The objective of productive maintenance was to optimize plant and equipment efficiency to attain maximum life cycle of production equipment.

Mean while, with total participation of employees, Nippon Denso made quality circles concept. Nippondenso was awarded with the renowned plant prize TPM by the Japanese Institute of Plant Engineers (JIPE) for up-warding and executing based on employee’s complete involvement maintenance in maintenance programme. Nippondenso of the Toyota group became the first company to achieve the TPM certification.

The objectives behind to adopt TPM

Evade wastage in a rapidly changing economic environment.
. Manufacturing goods without dipping product quality.
. Decrease all over operation cost.
. Make a low batch quantity at the sufficient time.
. Products delivered to the customers must be non-defective.
. Superior teamwork and complete employee participation at all levels
. Attain Zero Defects, Zero Breakdown and Zero accidents in all functional areas of the organization.

Comparison between Total Quality Management (TQM) and Total Productive Maintenance (TPM)

The TPM program is similar to the Total Quality Management (TQM) program in some way or other, but the approach is different. Many of the tricks and tactics such as employee empowerment, benchmarking, documentation, etc. are applied in TQM and also are used to execute and maximize Total Productive Maintenance.

The similarities between them are as follows:

1. Total dedication to the plan by the top management is necessary in both programmes
2. Employees must be authorize to set off corrective action, and
3. A long term goal must be established as TPM may take a year or more to put into practice and is an on-going process. Adjusting employee mind-set toward their job everyday jobs must take place as well.

Types of maintenance

1. Breakdown maintenance

Breakdown maintenance is a type of maintenance in which workers or employees works until the equipment fails and repairs it. Such a thing could be applied when the equipment failure does not considerably influence the procedure or production or produce any noteworthy loss other than repairing cost.

2. Preventive maintenance (1951)

It is a type of maintenance where daily the updating of equipment is done, it involves cleaning, inspection, oiling and re-tightening and design to keep the healthy condition of equipment and stop failure through the prevention of deterioration, periodic inspection or equipment circumstance finding, to measure corrosion. Preventive maintenance is further divided into periodic maintenance and predictive maintenance types.

2a. Periodic maintenance (Time based maintenance – TBM)

Time based maintenance is inspecting at regular intervals, repairing and cleaning equipment and substituting their parts to stop sudden breakdown and process problems.

2b. Predictive maintenance

Predictive maintenance is a technique in which the service life of significant component is forecasted based on assessment or judgment, in order to apply the component or section to the limit of their service life. Predictive maintenance is condition based maintenance compared to periodic maintenance. It handles slit values, by appraising and investigating data about deterioration and utilizes an observation system, intended to check circumstances through an on-line system.

3. Corrective maintenance (1957)

Corrective maintenance involves of the action in used to re-establish a failed system to ready condition in its as usual status. This generally concerns with substituting or repairing the component or part that is accountable for the failure of the overall system.

Corrective maintenance is carried out at random intervals because a component’s breakdown time is not known in a prior. The objective of corrective maintenance is to re-establish the system to adequate action within the shortest achievable time. Corrective maintenance is generally operated in three steps:

Diagnosis of the problem: Here the maintenance expert takes time to find the failed parts assess the cause of the failure of the system.

Repair and/or alternate faulty component: Once the reason of system failure has been found out, action must be taken to address the reason, generally by substituting or repairing the components that made the failure of the system.

Verification of the repair task: Once the components repaired or replaced maintenance expert confirms the system for effective use.

4. Maintenance prevention (1960)

It specifies the device of new equipment by keeping in mind “Prevention is better than cure”. Fault in the current machines are adequately and are built-in before task of new equipment. It works on the principle.

Direct benefits of TPM

1. Increase productivity and OPE (Overall Plant Efficiency).
2. Take corrective measure steps against customer complaints.
3. Decrease the manufacturing cost.
4. Complete satisfaction of customers’ (Providing the right quantity at the right time, in the needed quality. )
5. Reduce accidents.
6. Pollution control assurance

Indirect benefits of TPM

1. Superior belief level among the employees.
2. Maintain the work place clean, careful and appealing.
3. Constructive change in the approach of the operators.
4. Attain goals by ‘team work’ concept.
5. Horizontal maneuver of a new idea in all areas of the organization.
6. Knowledge and expertise sharing.
7 The workers dig up with a reaction of has possession of the machine.

Steps of implementing TPM in an organization

Phase I – Preliminary phase

Declaration by Management about TPM

Appropriate supportive, committed involvement of the top management required for this. Circulate it in the house magazine and should be putted on the notice boar
d. Send formal letter to all task related individuals if necessary. Awareness programmes can be organized for all levels of employees (from top level to bottom level).

Initial learning process for TPM

Training programme to be prepared according to the individual’s involvement or based on the requirement.

Establish TPM team

TPM comprise perfection, self-directed maintenance, quality maintenance etc. , an individual and group committees are set up to take care of all those requirements.

Setting up the TPM functioning structure and target

Each group assigned with the relevant targeted job for the achievement of fixed target.

A master plan implemented to improve organizational culture

Next step is to implement and executing a master plan wherein TPM grow to be an organizational culture.

Phase II – Launching phase

Launching a TPM by inviting all employees including sister concern establishments, associated companies and it is one kind of good practice to invite all.

Phase – III: Implementing phase

In this stage the activities are brought out by main pillars in the progress of TPM action. These pillars are intended for the production efficiency, initial control method of new products and equipment, improving the effectiveness of administration and are for control of safety, sanitation as working environment etc.

Phase: IV – Institutionalizing phase to attain high organizational culture

By gradual progress of the above activities, if one would have arrived at maturity stage adopt a change to make high organizational culture by giving recognition, PM award etc.

Seiri – Sort out

This denotes categorizing and organizing the items as significant, regularly utilized items, inadequate, or items that are not required as of at the present moment. Useless items can be put away. Significant items should be set aside for the use nearby and items that are not be utilized in near future, should be stocked at other place. So, here the worth of the item should be determined according to the usefulness and not cost. As an out come, the hunting time is reduced.

Seiton – Organize

It states that “Each and every item has a place and just only and only one place”. The items after utilizing for work should be to be found back at similar place. To spot out items without difficulty, name plates and colored tags has to be utilized.

Seiso – Cleaning up workplace

This entails cleaning the work place must be free of dust, grease, oil, waste etc which means housekeeping.

Seiketsu – Standardization

Employees have to talk about mutually and putted in the practice some standards for maintaining the work place, machines and roads neat and clean. These standards are executed for whole organization and are checked arbitrarily.

Shitsuke – Self-discipline

Taking into account of 5S as a manner of life and made self-discipline amongst the employees of the organization. This covers wearing badges, following work methods, punctuality, devotion to the organization etc.

Pillar 2 – Jishu Hozen (Autonomous maintenance)

This pillar is driving up-warding workers to be capable to secure small maintenance tasks, thus acquittal the trained maintenance people to use up time on more value added action and technical upkeep.

Policy

1. Continuous function of equipments.
2. Adaptable worker to function and keep ready other equipments.
3. Removing the imperfections at foundation through effective employee participation.
4. Stage wise execution of JH actions.

Jishu Hozen’s objectives

To stop broken up operation, decrease fuel consumption, decrease process time, increase efficiency and application of use of Jishu Hozen.

Stages in Jishu Hozen

1. Training of employees
2. Preliminary cleaning of machines
3. Obtain counteract measures
4. Set-up provisional JH standards
5. Common inspection
6. Self-directed inspection
7. Standardization and
8. Self-governing management.

Pillar 3 – Kaizen

“Kai” denotes change, and “Zen” denotes good (for the better). Basically kaizen is for small improvements, but accepted on a frequent basis and entail all people in the organization. Kaizen is just opposite to big amazing modernization. Kaizen needs zero or little investment. The belief behind is that “a huge number of little improvements are shift became helpful in an organizational environment than a little improvements of great value. This pillar is designed for dropping sufferers in the workplace that involve efficiencies. By applying a comprehensive and systematic method it remove losses in an organized technique with a range of Kaizen tools. These tricks are not restricted to production areas but also put into practice in administrative areas as well.

Kaizen Guiding principle

1. Perform hypothesis of zero losses in every area of action.
2. Persistent chase to attain cost reduction targets in all resources.
3. Persistent chase to develop over all plant equipment efficiency.
4. Maximize use of PM analysis as a tool for removing losses.
5. Concentrate on easy handling methods.

Objective of Kaizen

To attain and maintain zero loses with regards to slight stops, measurement and adjustments, defects and unavoidable downtimes.

Methods applied in Kaizen

1. PM examination
2. Why – Why examination
3. Review of losses
4. Kaizen record
5. Kaizen review sheet.

Pillar 4 – Planned Maintenance

It is designed to carry out difficult-free machines and equipments manufacturing deficiency free goods for total customer satisfaction. This divides furtherer into four groups.

1. Preventive Maintenance
2. Breakdown Maintenance
3. Corrective Maintenance
4. Maintenance Prevention

With Planned Maintenance we build up attempts from a reactive to a proactive technique and apply it to train maintenance workforce.

Guidelines

1. Attain and maintain accessibility of machines.
2. Maximum maintenance cost.
3. Decrease spares stock.
4. Recover steadfastness and maintainability of machines.

Objective

1. To get equipment failure and break down level at zero.
2. Develop steadfastness and maintainability.
3. Decrease maintenance cost.
4. Making sure of availability of spares all the time.

Six steps in planned maintenance

1. Equipment assessment and charting present status.
2. Making sound information management system.
3. Organize time based information system, opting equipment, parts and members and draw a plan.
4. Set up predictive maintenance system by setting up equipment diagnostic techniques.
5. Appraisal of planned maintenance.

Pillar 5 – Quality maintenance

It is objected towards customer satisfaction by providing superior quality through deficiency free manufacturing practice. The concentration is made on removing non-conformances in a systematic manner, much like attentive development. Shift is made from reactive to proactive (Quality Control to Quality Assurance) quality maintenance procedure.

Pillar 6 – Training

It is objected to have multi-skilled refreshed employees whose morale is high and who has keen to come to work and carry out all necessary role successfully and independently. Education and training is provided given to workers to improve their skill. It is not enough know only “Know-How” by they should also be trained “Know-why”. By experience they can achieve “Know-How” to conquer a trouble what to be made.

Pillar 7 – Office Total Productive Maintenance

Office TPM should be in progress after stimulating four pillars of TPM (JH, KK, QM, and PM). Office TPM must be ensured to develop output, effectiveness in the administrative roles and recognize and remove losses. This covers examine processes and measures towards increased office automation.

How office TPM function
s

Any head of the department carry out operation e. g. Head of Finance, MIS, Purchase etc should be a leader of the sub-committee. Members on behalf of all support functions and people from Production & Quality should be integrated in sub committee. It co-ordinate plans and provides guidance to sub committee by:

1. Offering awareness schedule about office TPM to all support departments
2. Recognize the possibility for progress in each function
3. Gather significant data
4. Assist them to work out problems in their circles
5. Craft an action panel where progress is observed on both sides – results and actions along with Kaizens
6. Stimulating all employees and circles in all functions.

Benefits of Office TPM

1. Participation of all employees in confirming functions for spotlighting on superior plant performance
2. Improved applied work area
3. Decrease repetitive work
4. Decreased inventory levels in all parts of the supply chain
5. Decreased administrative costs
6. Decreased inventory carrying cost
7. Decreasing in file numbers
8. Decreasing of overhead costs
9. Effective output of people in support functions
10. Decreasing office equipment breakdown
11. Decreasing customer complaints, improve customer satisfaction
12. Decreasing expenses due to emergency send offs/procurement
13. Decreased manpower
14. Dirt free and enjoyable work place.

Supports of office TPM with regards plant TPM

Office TPM maintains the plant, primarily in liability Jishu Hozen of the machines (after providing training of Jishu Hozen), as in Jishu Hozen at the 1. Preliminary phases machines are maximum and manpower is minimum used, so the help of administrative departments can be used, for this 2. Office TPM can remove the loads

Pillar 8 – Health, environment and safety issues

This is dealt with zero accident, zero health damage and zero fires issues. The area is focused on to make a safe workplace and a nearby area that is not smashed by any process or procedures. This pillar will perform a vigorous role in each of the other pillars on a habitual basis.

A committee is set up for this pillar which included delegates of administrator as well as workers. The committee is leaded by senior vice President (Technical). Utmost significance to safety is provided in the plant. To make attentiveness amongst employees a variety of contest like safety slogans, Quiz, Drama, Posters, etc. related to safety can be prepared at expected period.

TPM awards in textile industry

Milliken & Company, manufacturer of variety of fabric, yarn and chemical products has received many prestigious awards worldwide. It has received the British Standards Institute for Excellence in Quality and also achiever of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, and the Japan Institute of Plant Maintenance TPM Excellence Award in 1999.

In 2003 and 2004, fabric manufacturer, Hirdaramani of Sri Lanka won the Taiki Akimoto 5S Awards – Merit Awards

Thai Rayon Public Co. Ltd. Thailand, won TPM Excellence Award in 2002, it is a group company of Aditya Birla Group of India, it is the first Viscose Rayon Staple Fiber company to received the TPM Excellence Award in 2002 by JIPM (Japan Institute of Plant Maintenance), Japan.

Conclusion

Today, in changing scenario, struggle in industry all time at a great height, Total Productive Maintenance may be the only tool that sets a standard for the successful companies. And from above, the number of companies is showing their better result in the world wide market and their great achievement shows that the program works. It can be further modified to effort not only for industrial plants, but in construction, building maintenance, transportation, and in a various circumstances.

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Start a Lawn Care Business – Funding and Start Up Costs

The lawn care business can seem extremely easy to enter due to the low start up costs involved A basic lawn mowing business can be started for just a few thousand dollars if you exclude the cost of buying a vehicle. This article looks at funding and start up costs for a small lawn care business.

For some lawn care business operators, start up costs end up being more than expected, debt can spiral out of control and income can be surprisingly slow in the beginning.

As it will take you some time to build up a client list and get some money coming in it is a good idea to buy your equipment with cash instead of buying on credit and going into debt.

You don’t necessarily have to start off with the best gear. Just start your business off with what you feel are the essentials and then as you increase your income over time you can slowly invest in additional equipment.

To get started with a lawn care business you really only need a lawn mower, mulching bag, an edger and your vehicle. A pick-up or small truck is preferred but you can get away with a station wagon or SUV.

Buying good quality, second hand equipment is one way to minimize start up costs and lower your risk.

Leasing equipment is also preferable to going into debt in the early stages of your business. Try to look for a short-term lease so that if you want to quit the business after a trial period then you won’t be locked into a long-term contract. If you quit your business, returning leased equipment is preferable to being stuck with a lot of debt and expensive lawn care equipment that is hard to sell.

If you can’t get a small interest free loan from family and you really do need to seek funding then make sure that you have a solid business plan in place that you can take to potential lenders to show them that you are serious.

However, before you look at small business financing options for your lawn care start up investigate the possibility of getting a small business grant from your state or government. The lengthy application processes involved and the small chance of success turn most people off this idea but it is worth looking into if you are eligible.

All in all though, we are really not talking about a lot of money that is involved with getting a lawn care business up and running. Entrepreneurs who are keen to get started in the lawn care business should look upon the raising of their own start up capital as being their first challenge.

At his site StartaLawnMowingBusiness.com Steve Sutherland has reviewed three of the top info products that can give you the guidance that you need to start a lawn business the right way.

Need a logo for your business? Logo-Reviews.com is a great place to compare options if you are wanting to buy a logo online

Steve Sutherland has experience running a variety of small businesses. Passionate about helping others get started in business he writes on several business related topics including the lawn care industry and logo design.

Contract Accounting

A contract is a big job requiring considerable length of time to complete and comprising activities to be done outside the factory promises, viz. construction of a dam or school building, laying down railway lines, etc. Special cost and financial accounting is required to maintain the records of construction contracts. Since each contract involves considerable resources both in terms of men and materials, it is necessary to devise an appropriate accounting system to ascertain the cost and profit made on each contract separately.

Profit on incomplete contracts: At the end of an accounting period it may be found that certain contract have been completed while others are still in process and will be completed in the coming years. The total profits made on completed contract say be safely taken to the credit of the profit and loss account. But the same cannot be done in case of incomplete contracts. These contracts are still in process, and there are possibilities of profits being turned into to losses on account of heavy rise in prices of materials and labor and losses on account of other unforeseen contingencies. At the same time it does not also seem desire able to consider the profits only on completed contracts and ignore completely incomplete ones because this may result in heavy fluctuations in the figure of profit from year to year. A year in which a large number of contracts have been completed will show an abnormal high figure for profit while reserve may be the case in the year in which a large number of contracts remain incomplete. Therefore, profits on incomplete contracts should be considered, of course, after providing adequate sums for meeting unknown contingencies.

There are no hard and fast rules for the calculation of the figures for profit to be taken to the credit of profit and loss account. However, the following rules may be followed:

(a) Profit should be considered in respect of work certified only, work uncertified should always be valued at cost.

(b) No profit should be taken into consideration if the amount of work certified is less than 1/4 of the contract price because in such cases it is not possible to foresee the future clearly.

(c) If the amount of work certified is 1/4 or more but less than1/2 of the contract price, 1/3 of the profit disclosed, as reduced but the percentage of cash received from the contractee, should be taken to the profit and loss account. The balance should be allowed to remain as a reserve.

(d) If the amount of work certified is very much near completion, if possible the total cost of completing the contract should be estimated The estimated total profit on the contract then can be calculated by deducting the total estimated cost from the contract price. The profit and loss should be credited with that proportion of total estimated profit on cash basis, which the work certified bears to the total contract price.

(f) The whole of loss, if any, should be transferred to the profit and loss account.

Cost Plus Contracts: In certain contracts the contractee agrees to pay to the contractor the cost price (usually prime cost) of the work done on the contract plus an agreed percentage thereof by way of overhead expenses and profit. Such contracts are known as cost-plus contracts. The system of cost plus contract costing is employed in cases where it is very difficult for the contractor to quote the contract price because there has been no precedent which he may take as basis. It is also employed where the work to be done is not fixed at the time of placing order for the contract. The method is generally used where government happens to be the contractee. The method suffers from the following disadvantages:

There is no incentive to the contractor to eliminate waste and economies the cost of completing the contract. On the other hand, he is tempted to increase the cost because greater the cost, the greater will be his share of profit. In case of this system the amount of overheads recovered and profit made depends upon the value of materials used, which is subject to considerable price fluctuations. The agreed fixed percentage may, therefore, prove to be either too excessive or too low for covering overheads and profit.

Escalation Clause: Escalation clause is usually provided in the contract as a safeguard against any likely changes in the prices of utilization of material and labor. The clause provides that in case prices of items of raw materials, labor, etc. specified in the contract, change during the execution of the contract, beyond a specified limit over the price prevailing at the time of signing the agreement, the contract price will be suitably adjusted. The term of the contract specify the procedure for calculating such adjustment in order to avoid all future disputes. Thus, such a clause safeguards the interests of both the contractor and contractee in case of fluctuations in the price of materials and labor, etc.

Work in Progress: At the end of the accounting period a contract may still be in progress. The term work in progress refers to the work done so for in respect of the contract, which is still incomplete. It consists of the following:

(1) Working Certified: It refers to the work approved by the contractee. In case of contracts it is the useful practice for the contractor to get the work approved from time to time from the contractee. This is helpful to the contractor in two ways; first in case the contractee finds the work not up to specifications, he may ask the contractor to take corrective actions in time. Second, in contract accounts it is useful practice to have a system of progress payments, i. e. , the contractee agrees to pay a certain percentage of the work certified (say, 80 or 90 percent). This is advantageous to the contractor since he gets immediate liquid funds.

(2) Work Uncertified: It refers to the work which has been done by the contractor but not so far approved by the contractee.

Work certified generally includes some profit element also while work uncertified is always valued at cost to the contractor.

Sub Contracts: The contractor may entrust some portion of the work to be done under the contract to a sub-contractor. Usually work of a specialized nature, i. e. , steel work, special flooring, etc. , is done by sub-contractors, who are responsible to the main contractor. The cost of such sub-contracts is a direct charge against the contract for which the work has been done.

Rashid Javed is an Asian author. He writes articles about various topics of financial accounting and managerial accounting such as six sigma and current ratio
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Accounting Practice for Sale

Accounting Practice Sales devotes in the purchase and sale of CPA firms and also tax practices.

The founders of Accounting Practice Sales are CPAs who have spent a lot of their time buying and selling tax practices with huge success. There are plenty of companies or websites that can help you out, they can perfectly match buyers and sellers whether it is an EA firm, CPA firm or a tax practice.

Wondering on how you can purchase an accounting firm for sale? If you are ready to expand your existing business or if you are planning to put up a new business, there are some ways you can do in order to be successful. You can look for listing of accounting practices for sale in your area.

Do you know any step to purchase an accounting practice? Have you already search accounting businesses for sale in your area?

Do you want your business to grow even further? So are you looking into buying an accounting practice? Accounting Practice Sales really grew with their own businesses in the same way.

There are companies or websites that are dedicated to find you the best accounting firm, tax business or accounting practice for sale, the one that will suit your needs with regards to location, size, financing, cash flow and also practice area. There are websites that can offer you the fastest, simplest and most effective way to expand your business.

Usually, Accounting Practice Sales doesn’t offer tax practice for sale without any fixed price at closing; this is actually a condition to most buyers.

You can try to look with the accounting practice listings in order for you to find the best practice that suits your needs. If in case, you can’t find the best practice in the listings, you can work out with practice owner who can discuss selling with you.

Are you looking for CPA sales broker? You can work out with sales broker; he or she can help you out. This sales broker can help you reach your goals and can help you achieve your dreams.

Sales broker can determine the best asking price for your business, since this sales broker uses time-tested strategies. The main aim of the sales broker is to create a price that will work for both seller and buyer. But of course, you have to spend some of your time to research for the best company and sales broker that can help you out.

The sales broker or the company can mitigate with the confusion between the practice owners and buyers. They make sure that the both side can tell what they want. If you are having troubles like finances and so on, they can help you out to prevent such troubles from rising into large-scale disasters. These companies and sales brokers use a lot of strategies regarding marketing tax practices for sale, so you will be assured to have potential buyers.

These websites that you can search in the internet can help you out and can give you advices on the best ways for you to expand your businesses or the best way for you to start on buying a CPA firm.

Article Author Eliza Maledevic from http://www.Jump2top.com
, a SEO Company. Know more about Florida Real Estate at & http://florida-mortgage.xon.us

Use Conflict Management Training Materials To Train People on Conflic

Some people are difficult. You feel they are overwhelming, somewhat annoying and you would rather not deal with these people. The reality is that, like it or not, from time to time you might be confronted with someone who proves to be troublesome. The right way to approach it is not to dismiss it or avoid it, but to learn how to handle it. This article provides a number of guidelines on conflict management and how to handle difficult people.

A Proactive Approach

It is easy to blame someone as soon as we discover that something is wrong or we don’t like their approach. By constantly blaming others you risk missing the obvious and would develop into an unpleasant know-it-all character where everyone would rather stay away from. This also stops you from developing and improving.

The first step when confronted with something you don’t like is to ask yourself if “you” were to blame. Always aim to be proactive which means you need to assume it is your fault so you can observe your own behaviour and take steps to improve it. Consider the following:

  • Do you listen to the statement or are you busy planning? Are you more focused on what to say next as a rebuttal rather than really listening to what the other person is saying?
  • Do you react immediately when you feel you are threatened? What happens if you slow down next time? May be you are not under attack and you just thought you have been challenged. Ask yourself if your reaction is justified. On the other hand, suppose the person is indeed attacking you, did you consider the option of not reacting and instead ignoring the person deliberately? You can achieve both of these if you simply allow yourself time to think rather than immediately reacting as soon as you feel you have been attacked, simply because you cannot to be too sure.
  • Are you sure you understood the person well? Do you ever ask the other person to repeat himself, especially when what you heard felt like an attack? May be you misunderstood. Even when you think you have understood, do you ever present it in your own words and check with the other person to make sure you did not misunderstand?
  • Are you open to new ideas? Do you accept that others can sometimes come up with better solutions than you and suggest better methods? Do you ever allow them to state what’s on their mind before imposing your own ideas?
  • Do you ever pause? Do you ask for time to think before you can come back with an appropriate response?
  • Do you know your own strengths and weaknesses? Do you know where you stand? Are you willing to think positively about the situation?

As you can see, a great way to approach the problem of handling difficult people is to centre your attention on yourself rather than the other person. Time and again you may see that a proactive approach can significantly come to resolve the issue and in fact come to strengthen your relationship with the other person rather than weakening it.

Handling difficult people is an inter-personal skill and a great way to master it is by going through interactive exercises with others and test yourself using conflict management scenarios and case studies. To do this, you can attend a course on conflict management or handling difficult people and train yourself under supervision of a soft skills trainer. Alternatively, if you are in charge of your staff, you can setup a corporate training course for them. For this you can use handling difficult people training materials or conflict management training materials and train the trainers to run an efficient course covering the guidelines provided above. For these training resources see below.

Paul Anderson is a training consultant in a UK company that provides learning soft skills and training workbooks, corporate training and train the trainer programs on Difficult Conversations, Handling Difficult People, Assertiveness Skills and Conflict Resolution. For more on this see Conflict Management Training Materials
. Also see other training courses, management courseware, train the trainer course, train the trainer training, online training resources, resources for trainers, soft skill training, management training programs and train the trainer training materials
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Goodwill is an Intangible Asset

‘Goodwill’ is regarded as an intangible asset in a business. Goodwill carries a value over and above the tangible assets of a business, and representing all benefits derived from the distinctive location, trade and brand names, credit rating, reputation, cusotmers and patronage of the business. When a business is sold, a charge is usually applied for the goodwill as one of the assets.

Goodwill develops by virtue of quality of products or service found beneficial by the customers, clients, users, vendors etc. and the manner and style in which the products or services are presented. Good advertising helps in accelerating pace of development of goodwill and prestige. Usually advertising and other image building techniques take goodwill and sales to new heights of fame, renown and prestige. Sponsoring sports and social events, donations to charity etc help in enhancing prestige and fame.

A brand name can help add to the goodwill of the business besides acquiring its own goodwill value. Truly great brands are far more than just labels for products or trademarks; they are symbols that encapsulate the desires and liking of consumers as well their trust and confidence. In most cases products acquire fame under their brand name rather the name of their manufacturer as we see in case of cold drinks and soaps etc.

On other hand there are many companies, which are famous, and their name helps in generating confidence and trust in their different products. The products of Pharmaceutical and Electric Companies and different brand names for their products may not be as famous as the company itself. It is the prestige and goodwill of the company that helps in improving competitive position of the product in the market.

Trademark as a name, symbol, or other device identifying a product, officially registered and legally restricted to the use of the owner or manufacturer becomes an intangible asset and part of good will that can be sold separately or its use allowed to different manufacturers in different areas. Most franchise businesses owe their success to the fame and prestige attached to their brand names. Most chains of hotels and restaurants have been able to expand their franchise business world wide merely on the strength of goodwill attached to their brand names. Investors find it safe to rely on the prestige of the trade name rather than developing their own trade mark. Though they benefit from the guidance of well experienced experts and the prestige attached to the trade name, they have to pay royalty to the owners of the trade name.

Considerable efforts, ingenuity and investment are entailed in popularizing trademarks and brand names and building prestige for the organization. Content of the human intellect are deemed to be unique and original and to have marketplace value—and thus to warrant protection under the law. Intellectual property includes but is not limited to ideas; inventions; literary and art works; medicines, chemical, business, or computer processes; and company or product names and logos. Intellectual property protections fall into four categories: copyright (for literary works, art, and music), trademarks (for company and product names and logos), patents (for inventions and processes), and trade secrets (for recipes, code, and processes). Laws in many developing countries need to be reviewed and improved as concern over piracy of software, movies, music etc is being continuously expressed by the producers of movies and developers of software.

Relentless and persistence efforts are always required to maintain and enhance goodwill. Quality of products or service is of prime importance but many other factors are also important. Here is a partial list of the factors that can help in improving or damaging the goodwill.

1. Best possible quality for Sales presentation and distribution channels must be ensured. The quality of advertising, wrappers, packing and warranties is also vital. Location of offices and furnishings of high standard and good taste are always helpful.

2. Customer care and after sales service. Great damage comes from inattention and rude behavior of staff. Good service leads to multiple sales. If you take good care of your customers, they will open doors you could never open by yourself. Always strive to provide service above and beyond what the ordinary organization would give. It will help you build long-term relationships, trust, and referral business.

3. A comprehensive advertising and goodwill maintenance program must be kept under constant review. Advertising in papers and magazines, television, radio and Internet must be planned with great care based on assumption or surveys of your penetration in markets of different segment of population. Selection of site for hoardings, posters etc. must also be made in consultation with the experts.

4. Innovation and Research: By encouraging feedback from clients and sales outlets you can make improvement in designs and contents of new models or launch new and improved products. You must also keep a watch on fads and trends in those segments of population where your products are used.

5. Provision for participation in trade shows and in charity program and sponsoring sports and cultural events must be made in your budget.

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Shah N. Khan is editor of Weekly Fraternity Briefs http://www.yahoogroups.com/group/fraternity2 He also works as a marketing and management consultant for outsourcing different jobs via Internet in South Asia to achieve economy in labor costs or to help business organizations in publishing and editing ezines for customers and prospects. Email shah1936@yahoo.com http://www.geoci/pinclub