Newsletter – November, 2015

On My Mind
It is no longer a matter of whether an organization should develop analytical capabilities, but how those analytical capabilities will be developed. Information has become one of the most valuable assets owned by organizations along with the employees who collect, store, analyze, package, and share the information. To be successful in the rapidly-evolving Big Data revolution, Quality Management and Analytics professionals will need at least some knowledge and skill in several areas: Business Acumen; Statistical Methods; Logic & Critical Thinking; Computer Hardware & Software; Search & Algorithms; Synthesis & Pattern Recognition; Modeling & Scenarios; and Social Media. What will be important from a leadership standpoint is to develop the Analytics Team comprised of individuals who—in the combined sum of their knowledge and skills—have advanced mastery in all eight areas. Such a team will position the organization on the “winning” side of the Digital Divide and give the organization a chance to make substantive contributions to society.

Interesting Stories
Thirty years is a long time . . . but I’m sure it was well worth the wait for the fans of the Kansas City Royals Major League Baseball team. The Royals recently won the World Series by defeating the New York Mets in dramatic fashion. The Royals were my favorite team as a young boy and so this was a special World Series for me. I can remember following the performance of John Mayberry—the tall first baseman for the Royals and my favorite player—starting in 1972. The Royals team this year was very balanced, enthusiastic, and hungry for the World Series title. It will be interesting to see if they can repeat next year. One of the amazing achievements during the postseason was the record-setting performance by Daniel Murphy of the New York Mets—he hit at least one home run in six consecutive games, but he didn’t hit one in the World Series.

Company News
Strategic Improvement Systems will offer several public seminars and course in 2016. There will be five one-day public seminars: Japanese-Style Hoshin Kanri; Innovation Tools for Change Agents; Statistical Methods for Continuous Improvement; Continuous Improvement for Project Champions, Sponsors, and Team Leaders; and Quality, Analytics, and Big Data. Also, three courses in the Lean Six Sigma Series will be offered: Continuous Improvement Green Belt; Continuous Improvement Black Belt; and Continuous Improvement Master Black Belt. The schedule of events will be available on this website in January of 2016.

Intriguing Reads
Arguably, the publication of the book Moneyball by Michael Lewis in 2003 and the subsequent movie featuring Brad Pitt marked the beginning of the Analytics Movement. The Financial Times newspaper has a section every Monday titled, The Baseline. I always look forward to reading The Baseline because there is an interesting sports article that displays innovative data analysis and data visualization. The latest article discusses an alternative predictor of future success for Chelsea—a Premier League soccer team. If you are ever in an airport on a Monday, then look for the Financial Times at newsstands so you can read The Baseline.