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Porsche Consulting – The MagazineAs consultants we do a lot of traveling. When i look out of the hotel window in the morn- ing in Shanghai, São Paulo, or new York, i often ask myself questions like “What will the work actually look like for the people stream- ing into the entrances of those office towers? What will these men and women be producing today? What will they create from the flow of data in their computers? What will they have accomplished when they go home in the eve- ning? and how satisfied will they be with that?”if i were standing at the gate of a factory dur- ing shift change, it would be easier to answer these questions. at Porsche, for example, i would know that the people had built cars. The results are visible. Figures such as the number of units make performance both transparent and comparable with mathematical precision. nothing is left to chance.When Porsche Consulting was founded in 1994, we devoted most of our attention to conventional production processes. The fo- cus was on lean production. Two decades later, the efficiency of knowledge work in theadministrative departments of large compa-nies and in many service sectors has become an equally important focus of our consultancy. For only when intelligent solutions streamline the work and lead to excellent results in all of its departments can a company be well po- sitioned overall—and consequently outstrip its competitors.We therefore want to understand how knowledge workers achieve their daily targets. We want to find out what unnecessary obsta- cles prevent them from accomplishing their tasks smoothly. and we seek ways to bring out their individual skills more effectively. Just like in production at Porsche, the interplay of everyone involved is a crucial component here too—from the planning to the end result.astonishingly, even the top management per- sonnel of many companies have far too little concrete knowledge about the efficiency and excellence of their administrative departments. That has apparently never been examined in detail. The pressure to act often only arises at the last minute—when something goes com- pletely wrong and for lack of other options the emergency brake needs to be pulled. it is easy to see that such hasty measures can serve at best to limit the damage.however, if we ask the people in offices how their work could be better organized and pro- ceed to analyze it together with them, we generally arrive rather quickly at necessary changes that can be put successfully into prac- tice and that make everyone involved more sat- isfied. Satisfaction ultimately also increases for the customers: namely, the people who pay for the products or services and therefore de- termine the success of the company. This is how competitive advantage to the details of how we work—whether in factories or administrative offices—we have once again gathered examples from very dif- ferent clients. i would be pleased if, while leaf- ing through this issue of the magazine, you alight upon exciting accounts that can provide you too with new ideas.eberhard WeiblenChairman of the executive Board Porsche Consulting gmbh03

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