Keith Johnson
VP, Maintenance, Reliability and Asset Performance Excellence
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Not a week goes by that we don’t see or read the news about a company shutting down its operation or moving to another country due to financial difficulties. It makes you wonder what could have been done differently for the company to be successful. The answer often lies in effective Asset Performance. To implement or change processes for a procedure-based organization takes discipline and enforcing the right behaviors. That starts with leadership.

Companies work hard to take steps to improve asset performance. They implement changes to activities such as planning and scheduling, work control, reliability engineering and a host of other important processes. However, what some companies miss is the opportunity to change the behavior and culture of their management and workforce. When employees fail to recognize the benefits for improvement, efforts for asset performance go by the wayside and are chalked up to a futile attempt at change.

Effective change management takes developing and implementing sound processes in all functions of the organization, but more importantly leadership must see those processes through with long-term commitment and accountability for sustained change.

If your organization is implementing an asset reliability initiative or has implemented asset management processes and you’re not seeing results, you need to understand what it takes to manage complex changes. Leadership skills will help you manage change and move you toward a learning environment that supports continuous improvement and is sustainable over the long haul.

Mediocrity Attacks Asset Management Performance Excellence

Until you embrace the concepts of change, the workforce will continue to fall back into their old habits, and you will never excel and see the benefits of a world-class operation.

Below is a chart that shows some major activities that must take place for effective Asset Performance and are essential for your project to be successful. Please note that if any one of these elements are missing, it impacts overall change success.

Key Elements to initiate change for Asset Performance:

Key Elements to initiate change for Asset Performance

5 Prerequisites for Effective Asset Change Management

If you look at each one of the major elements and relate those to good leadership qualities, you see how using leadership skills will help you develop and implement these 5 elements:

  1. Vision & Strategy – Have the passion and understanding of why you are making the changes and develop a strategy to excel.
  2. Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities – As a leader have a good understanding of your workforce, and know that you have the right people with the proper skills in place to build upon their strengths within the organization.
  3. Incentives – Both positive and negative feedback is necessary to incorporate change. Make sure all expectations are understood and follow through with consequences when expectations are not met. Be sure to celebrate the successes.
  4. Resources – Have the leadership in place to commit the necessary resources, human and financial, to implement the new processes.
  5. Action Plans – Develop and implement a detailed plan that reflects the vision that your organization has embraced.

Leaders need to embrace each one of these elements to effect change. Please notice that if any one of these elements are missing it impacts overall change success.

Teach the Skills for Success

If you are in an organization that strives for Asset Performance Excellence and you want to achieve a true procedure-based organization, you must have the discipline and the right behaviors in place to succeed. That takes strong leadership qualities.

Frequently, the concept of managing a reliability initiative is synonymous with implementing a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) with sound business processes. People expect results to magically appear. However,  while understanding it is critical to develop the tools for good processes and a CMMS, successful and sustainable change is in the hands of people like the maintenance technicians and operators.

Don’t let your company be another statistic on the nightly news. Make a commitment to be the catalyst for change in your organization and embrace the leadership qualities that it takes to make a difference. Remember, it is in those hands that ultimately make a difference for your success and the success of your organization.

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