Making a car can be one hot potato - Ford Forums - Mustang Forum, Ford Trucks, Ford Focus and Ford Cars
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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 10-23-02, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
Mr. Embargo
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Embargoland
Posts: 3,745
Making a car can be one hot potato

Call it the allegory of the baked potato. This comparison of how different automakers might bake a potato has been making the rounds on the industry's e-mail circuit.

In some versions, the second automaker is General Motors. This version came to our attention courtesy of a Ford supplier.

How a Honda employee bakes a potato:

Preheat new, high-quality oven to 350 F

Insert Idaho potato

Go do something productive for 45 minutes

Check for doneness, then remove perfectly baked potato from oven and serve

How a Ford employee bakes a potato:

Instruct an Idaho potato supplier to preheat the oven to 350 F

Demand that the supplier show you how he turned the dial to reach 350 F, and have him come up with documentation from the oven manufacturer proving that it was calibrated properly

Review documentation, then have supplier check the temperature using a sophisticated temperature probe

Direct supplier to insert potato and set timer for 45 minutes

Have supplier open oven to prove potato has been installed correctly, and request a free study proving that 45 minutes is the ideal time to bake a potato of this size and variability due to orientation within the oven

Request a Six Sigma Study showing variable cook times for various potato sizes and orientations

Check potato for doneness after 10 minutes

Check potato for doneness after 11 minutes

Check potato for doneness after 12 minutes

Become impatient with supplier (Why is this simple potato taking so long to bake?). Demand status reports every five minutes.

Check potato for doneness after 15 minutes.

After 35 minutes, conclude that potato is nearing completion. Pass through Gate review reporting all Green status.

Congratulate supplier, then update your boss on all the great work you've done, despite having to work with such an uncooperative supplier

Remove potato from oven after 40 minutes of baking, as a cost save without loss of function or quality vs. the original 45-minute baking time.

Serve potato

Wonder aloud what on earth those Japanese folks are doing over there to make such good, low-cost baked potatoes that people seem to like better than Ford potatoes.

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