Some say operations and strategy don’t mix. After four decades of trying to integrate these perspectives, they might be right. I remember attending a personality styles class years ago to discover our unique style and to deepen our appreciation for others. An outcome I recall was meeting in the middle and joining hands in order to integrate our styles. If we could all do that, the lesson went, we could collectively be more productive, creative, and happier people. Right? Wrong again, Steve!
The COVID-19 crisis has undoubtedly shifted our lives in a myriad of ways, including how we work. While more than twenty percent are out of work due to COVID-related layoffs, the global pandemic has forced the eighty percent still working to either perform their responsibilities remotely or to work in a facility while trying to maintain social distance (along with additional new best practices like increased sanitation or shift staggering). Regardless of where we are doing our work, one thing is certain: we have all had to adapt.
*The opinions and thoughts expressed in this article are my own and not necessarily those of my employers or any other individuals.
The final speaker for the Ohio State University Center for Operational Excellence’s sixth-annual summit opened his keynote with a statement that had emerged as a running theme across the three-day experience: “We’re no longer a knowledge economy; we’re a learning economy,” said Dr. Bradley Staats (pictured, above), an associate professor of operations at the University of North Carolina and author of the forthcoming Never Stop Learning. “It’s not what you know today; it’s how you’re going to adapt, how you’re going to change to deal with the uncertainty you face tomorrow.”
You might not know the name Lancaster Colony, but you almost certainly have one of its products in your refrigerator or freezer right now. Lancaster Colony is the company that owns and makes the market-dominating Marzetti salad dressing and dip brand along with other products such as Sister Schubert’s homemade rolls and New York Brand Bakery Texas toast. It’s a $1.2 billion-a-year company based in Columbus, part of the Center for Operational Excellence since 1998 - and starting a brand new chapter in its corporate story.