Episode 1 · 8 months ago

#1 Resilience & Business Excellence - Episode guest: Mr. Sunil Thawani


 Mr. Sunil Thawani is an author & fellow at the American Society for Quality (ASQ). He is CEO of Quality Indeed Consulting Ltd and champions UN SDGs. Mr. Sunil Thawani is recipient of prestigious ASQ Lancaster medal. He currently serves as Member, Board of Directors, Dubai Quality Group. Lives in Dubai, U.A.E.

Mr. Sunil Thawani is known for providing leadership to people, delivering excellence, with a clear focus on results, and ability to effectively deal with complex situations. He has a successful track record of creating organizations which are highly customer-focused, continually improving and are differentiated in the market place for their operational and service excellence. 

Talking points:

1. Need and importance of resilience in current VUCA business context

2. Role of leadership in creating resilience

3. How to build agile & resilient organizational strategy?

4. Real life examples of implementation

5. Learning lessons 

Welcome to another episode of WellenaConsulting podcast on Resiliens, and today we have another steam guess MrSunol Kavani and Mr Sonal Kavan is an engineer with NBA and he has almostthirty years right. A lot of experience so of denral Mar an intermentexperience in theverse functions, Namealy, total quality management,stategy deployment, corporate governance, industrial engineering,marketing materials, business excellence, performance management invarious industries like banking, right, realisay,development, consulting steel oil portal operations and Mr Suno Tavani isknown for providing readership to people or delivering excellence, with aclear focus on results and ability to effectively deal with complexsituations. He has a successful track record ofcreating organizations which are highly customer, focus, continually, improvingand differentiated in the marketplace for their operational and therty sexones. So, Mr Tivani, what would you say? Yourspecialties are fosme many times to use Jelena and JeanAngeina and Semtin company is such a pleasure to connect with you in thisvirtual meeting methods. Wish we meet some day soon get to know,but still it's great to know. You connect with you and the great work youdo around the process. Management of the human and psychlogical side, my Specialiti es essentially helporganizations anence performance and transform become more a gile customerfocused in the last fire. Ten Years, I've been focusing lot of the passionand interest and energy on the socialsectors, organizations which are supporting vulnerable people of thesociety like children, without parental care or social housing. So I'm reallyhappy to be here with you in your podcast talking about resilience,agility and things like that. Thank you, and I also wanted to thankyou or for agreeing to be your guest, and I also wanted to emphasize thatYoure also author and a fellow at the American Society for Quality- and you are also seof qualityinted, indeedconsulting right, and you also want the prestigios Aa Ski Lancaster, Mentol and right now you are fine, correct, amember of the board of directors at by Quality Group. Yes, that's right! Thankyou for such beautiful introduction. Yell thank you, and I also wanted to askperhaps it's interesting for the listeners you're currently intorontowith your family, but you reside in to buy and when we talked last time youwere in Dallas Texas right, that's right! Yes, that's right! Yeah, youknow, travel is my passion and I love to travel. So it's been one yearand was not traveling anywhere. I thought let we take a chance and bewith my children in Dallas and Toronto. It's important in these days yeah and if you want, perhaps we could startwith your personal story on resulance. You have such an interesting story ifyou wish to share with the listeners Yeaoai to travel right. Yeah.Absolutely thank you. You know this was... one thousand nine hundred and eightyfour. We go back about thirty five plus years me and a friend of mine. Wetravel around the world on a motorcycle covering tworty five countries throughfiftyhusand, kilometers and younewer. Those days we didn't have Google mapsor directions of Internet and email, so we were just starving and hungry forinformation. We used to live in a small, industral town and we didn't even havetelephone systems there to connect to the world. So when we prepared for it well look ata lot of uncertainities. We considered whether uncertainities we moneyshortages, what kind of food driving on the other side of the road, visars andeven a motorcycle has a passport kind of thing. You know ECAS once you driveinto a country, you can just sell the bike and settlethere, so so there's a passport. How to get that passport is a human mind in myview, is always occupied with the uncertainities of the future, and we then try to visualize. Imaginethe uncertainities and challenges threads and opportunities and adhaptour sense. Let me give an example in K: o our plant was that we will cover the novel part of wetravelled through Europe and then to us, and then Mexico and then Japan and allwhat we were doing is we thought we'll cover the northern barder United Statesfirst and when winter sutzin will be in southern part of Yous in Mexico. He hadcome out of Mexico and Werin Tetas Elpaso and we started our journey and itstarted snowing and we had a temperatures of minus five minus then extreme cald. We were. We knew we'llexperience that not this kind of winter, so now we will drive about.Seventy etykilometers will stop on the highways on the restroom and use thetilet didn't tall it. They have heters. You know that hotend to blow it on ourfaces and hands to warm up and the ice will gather between the real and themud guard or between the clutches so use trew, driver or hot water to emoveise get going, and that is e kind of you know.UNCERTAINITY WE experienced- and this weird snowfall was once after eightyyears and then finally, we reached PhoenixArisona, it was zero degrees and we were feeling warm. We came from NinuFifty Tzero, so businesses Lov, linking this to businesses, is the same thing.Businesses are experiencing lot of uncertainity due to Pendemat now and asusual. Also they do that. So this really taught me a lot, but when Iread management, I'm able to relate to my personal lifes experiences onresilience and risk management and Agilitya. So in your opinion, how would you define resulance, becausepeople have different views of this very important topic? Now, absolutely Imean very well said Yellin, and it is one of the most relevant subjects todayand businesses need it, but it's not new. I mean resilencs has been there inone shape of the form, but in the last...

...five years it has gained a lot of importance nowadays, William Origen,actually because of the covid situation. So that's a good point. You startedwith so thet be start with. The definition is isically. It is anorganization's ability to see the changes happening in theexternal business environment, an internal business envelment and that toit quickly, adapto it not. These changescan be gradual or sudden can be l incrementalor highly desruptive. Actually so, there's a ISO standard ISO, two twothree hundred and six. It was leased in two thousand and seventeen, so it defines resile as the ability ofan organization to absorb and adapt in a changing environment to enable it toblur its stutegic objectirs, survive, prospel and sustain give value to thecustomers. So it's a very simple straite, beautiful definition, but eachword has a lot of depth and Meani into that. Yes, yea, and I appreciate that you brought upthis systemic view how this is important, as well as internal factors.Yes, yeah through system psychodynamic. We also look at the boat, because Boshare important, youre, always in some kind of interaction with our environment,whether we are individuals at work or whether we are companies. Yes, ElAbslutation, very well, sad ter yeah. I would like to give an example. Youknow couple of examples around that one can. I can take the current one todependawi. We a lot of WEOL conclate to it, and people are seeing it is whenThi Pendomic happene schools in many parts of the world.They didn't have e learning. So with I mean there could have been asituation. Tha Millions of children would have lost on education learningand may have lost one full year, Acanami her so lot of countries theyquickly adapted to e learning. As a result, the schools had topurchase laptops computers, provide Internet resilities to the teachers andteachers had to learn how to teach electronically. How do observe and allthat, so I visited a person in Dallass recently Amanda. She had a black boardat her home and Weo Teacher Yeah and Shee School. She teaches government and constitution geographyto the student, so she had one full room set up as a teaching room. It'salways good to use some part of your house or your Plat to have an extraoffice in case of meed. Absolutely another organization, T ey. I know theyare my customers, there's a Freez on authority and governeor goodbye. Theytook quickly that they got hundreds of employees and thousands ofcustomers every day they are coming into the provices, so customers had tolearn doing a business or anyone has to come there to procure these terriblemeters to take the temperature within a few days. Yes, this is allorganizations, hae been quickly adapting to it. But if you look at thenormal business environment, vegionary leaders like just desos orLictrosoft, they had created thise,...

...techologies and operating models toselvof the customers electronically. You know a lot of people, don't know.Microsoft, put a six thousand kilometer underwater cable from us to Europe, that's where the data is traveling, OInternet right, yeah from east coast of years to Spain. So there are isionaeleaders. They arepreparing the Organization for the future, they're able to see how theworld is changing and that's how they become ziliant and the git. Yes, it's always very important to lookinto the future, but at these these terbulent times since the pademicstarted, there seems to be a special need to experience to express resilence butpossob to talk about it. And why do you think it's? Why do you need Wen? Do you think weneeded so much these things? Yeah very well said it's a good question. Youknow everything is to start with. Why that's the main driver or motivationfor that. If you stap back and look at it, the organization is interconnected.Through processes, prove people to roles andresponsibilities through organization structure through technology, let's sayERP system, so YERBI system will have people, their Rale will go in, lawswill go in, regulations will go in and it will deler in value. Since we areinterconnected very strongly, it delivers an output consistentlyseamlessly efficiently, let's say Ober, for example a dailing company. Sobehind it's all interconnected. I don't see that as a customer right now, all these components have to workvery smoothly. All these disciplines have to worksmoothly. No, we have been used to having a processeswhich are efficient and well defined. Now, with this s candemic or anyuncertainty, let's earthquake al. There is some situation. You know natural disaster,any destruction Y disaption it you know, thituts processes, people,mindsets, authorities and so on and so forth. Btit is this. disoption happensHo. We cannot allow deceptions to take over so now organizations need tocontinuously being prepared for this decoption. They need to havescenarios different, discoptions and prepare tat p. let's say syber attackslot of organizations today you know data is on the clouds, so organizationsare alwayl already doing a lot of scenarios and they keep on say. How canwe prevent the next Cygel back, so the more topae they are? They can deal with the deseption that wer. If I remember therewas one bank in Turkey, you know they had some bomb or some terrorist attack. Manyyears before I understand within twelve hours, the bank came back to selve thecustomers, because theyare all the data they were doing, backups to the serverlocated in a different continent, O a country so now descuptions have become away oflive, someote, severe someorethe, extended period of time, but they arethere. So... organization needs to be in a stateof preparedness to deal with it and then it onl ly foolish not to beprepared. Let me just put it that way. So resilience has become an integialpart of business. Today, and yet there is so so much that you can prepare, notnot you can't prepare diferenor everything, and we are witnessing that.I think yes EAH. It's avery good, the point, your raising you. She leadership is a very important roletoday to prepare its people, how to work in times of UNCERTAINITIES, EIS thatded to be seventy percent rightnow and prepare for it rather than wait for a hundred percent, and then it istoo late. We are always relating to tat with thisconcept of good enough from the psychodynamic theory. Interesting, justyeah till hope to learn this from you in some other session. Yes, but Iwanted to ask you as well: You mentioned the leadership and how doyou think you can feel the resilient leadership what'? What's your take onthis top yeah ien, it's a very good point. Actually I meanit has tol start with theleadership. There are few caracteristics or attributes which arevery important to see in a residient organization. Leadership needs to believe in the corepurpose of the organization, as Dor Deming says, constancy of purpose, so leadership needs to believe in the purpos. An the valuesthey have iht organization values. There need to be role models for thatand they have to enable culture where it's okay to deal with.UNCERTAINITIES, isn't e okay to empower people to take decisions whichare not the regular laws of the rules of the company Tey, for example, one ofthe rule can be. We will not invest in projects beyondten percent, for example es we ten, but when the pandoming has come all thesails numbers have fallen apart. Now you we may rlike that rule youdon't need a commity to do that, should empower your people. Should we see anopportuty if Rli is even seven percent, go ahead and move on, so speed is verycri important. Actually, flexibility is very mbodeled. tresting people to take decisions isvery important. Yes, no Michel Manage Ye and lot of communication is needed becausein thise times uncertain times, lot of decisions are Bein made. No imagine e organization which isspread over in ten countries, for example, so many countries like twor tin hundredand fifty sixty countries, so leathership needs to ensure thecommunication and the rationail of all the changes and decision makings arecommunicated to the people. Employees on it regular basis, drive out fearfrom the mind of the people and so be more trustworthy, be more tolerant, bemore. You know, adaptable flexible to dealwith this h. That is more and more becoming enorm onside. You know we ave been used to precition and accuracy and consistencyhaving succures and processes and rules and policies and procedures. Now we aremoving to...

...flexibility, adaptability, speed,agility, so processes, structure, techroogy everything has to beadaptable, Yer, I'm glad that we are learning how toappreciate things. Yes, more and more, absolutely IMEAN, it's not different athome. You know we are very adaptable. You know yeah an the indidial level,you know, but now once we go to Corprites, you know thereare rules and pocess. I mindset yeah. That is also important aswell yeah. So how do they think it is, or we are being able to build agile andresilient organizational strategies yeah? This is a very good question.yelline for sleeve you tous et that sratergyorganization needs to have a strategy to become a Gilan resilian without starting he di not happen. ItIl not accidentally become a Gilo resilient, so in tat, Alganizion canset up sotag goals to become Pecivian. It's a one of the most importantstategy these days. Now how to become it has got many components to that. A lot of things are linked to riskmanagement organization needs to do a holistic,comprehensive enterprise level risk assessment. You know I'll Shar. I You I'll we'reworking with a very large company on identifying emerging risks for thsentytworty, one tweny Doy to no. Interestingly, it calls a lot of vision actually to see what kind ofthis which can impact achieving the goals and objectivs. At the same time, this organization isnot too a gialt is it. They had said the annual business plan, KPAS andtargets for two thousand and twenty two or two thousand and twenty in Decemberof last year December Twuntan, nineteen, the set up, kpas, sale, Star Gad andrevenues targets excetor for thousany thirty. Now all that is not relevant ornot atial anymore, but instead of changing them quickly. Still people arereporting on the old numbers which are all red now, like yeah, we have a completelydifferent situation. Yes, the context changed. I context change absolutely sohow do we GOV Resilan his? You need to review your processesstrategy quickly? Is he no? Let me give Ou an example: customers Wer, let's say submittinginvices webpaper. Now we are in a contactless environment, so everythinghas to be done. He in Isis. Now the procedure says each it was, is to bestand, hard copy and then processed manually. Now, that's not possible. Youneed to have doctud sign kind of petology to accept and do that, so thatneeds to bring in quickly and process behind. This will change yeah. So youknowben that we need to have adaptable processes. Adaptable Suchas be open tochange our policies and protagers. So it's a combination of many things.Actually, all thei disciplines and systems need to be reviewed and you viewed quickly andadapted so process. Management is veryimportant. To ensure organization...

...remains a Gile and resilient becomesRezilian, and where do you think your expertise could help best with Lin Sixametodology yeah? It's Achstian, sorry, you want to say something: No!No! I just wanted to to make it easier for you. Okay, eraphrases is how can we use what we or what you knowfrom Louin, Sixi, Sigma and metodology to help organizations now yeah? Reallygood, I'm an is it. There is no at the moment to the best of the knowledge.There's no well defined path, Hougt of temethlogy ar a technique to become theGilian. It's a combination of various factors.One is the mindset atd the leadership level. They need to. Let go centralizedautogratic reer working. They need to let empower people to do that. They need to let go. You know their. You knowcontrols you know, decision making, control, they have to let go committeesand so on and so forth right. Secondly, I'd like to you know radically review andunderstand the external business context I was working for one healthcare company is a consultant. They did not identify all theirstakeholders, they had no ha some information about changes in theexternal business environment, but not in a planned, systematic, such a manner.So what I would really like to establish system so that they are ableto continuously, read and understand the external business environment andconnect the dots what's happening actually and how is it impacting myinternal business operations Segoni like to set up systems andcapability to continuously see what's happeninginternally and then, with the changes in theexternal environment and internal instead of forecasting I'll prefer tohave a scenario planning. Now I the earlier we had forecast plan, FI, yer,theea, West and o. Now these forecast were based on the past numbers and someHorizon Future. But now this you can't take this es numbers to put a businessplan for twnty Twrty, one twny, twenty three yeah. There are no numbers for Wthsantad twenty as well, not exactly yeah, not so o Thomas Shorts. You knowhe was the one who deloped scnario planning at Shell many years beforethirty years before so this started from military. You know: warfare,different scenario planning, so MSR thomers developed this capability andused it at Shell. What will happen to the crude il prices if solar energy,coms and alternatinergycans in Wat happens or there's a crash in thedemand and so on and so forth, like so going back to your Custon? So havingdone that, we'd like to have a scenario planning the signoful, let me take areal simple example: let's SAI take a place of crudeal, the crude wall isfortydollars a barrel. What kind of investments ill have? What can ofInitiateis I'll have? What kind of Kepeyes I'll have? Second scenares? Is The crudal becomessixty ollas or sevty dollar optiis tround the same numbers right thenprepared for the right, then. Thirdly,...

...essimistic scenario. Some of it goes toeighteendolars a baron, so what initiators will we can sen and what wee doing it? So these kind of things are needed nd. It calls for the numbers andalso visualization imaginethes scenarios. Fourth thing woud like to do is around people bill. People catabilities, it's okay to fail is okay to disagree is E. There's a mindset, the Bos knowsthe best or I cannot challenge him. That mindset needs to be changed. If you give me a MIT, I like to share areal life story of Mr Kimoreto. He was a foulder and the Ford of Sony Corporation. So one day I think, ITB interesting forthe listeen yeah. Thank you one day, chairman of the bold of SonyCorporation called Him and he said Aka. I really don't no, don't like you. You know you'realways challenging me. You're always disagreeing with me on the ideas andapproaches, whereas other wice present and leaders agree with me. You know what a Kimmaritha told him. If both of us think same one of us isnot beeded is that is that this, the culture wherewe disagree to come Ov with a richer decision? We are minuvizing the risk oftaking wrong decision. Actually, not this kind of thing has co permeatin many organizations right down the level Ori or it Cango Grassrot, GrasrooLeveahyeah. You know these days, personal biases and preferences, andpolitics comes in so the employee doesn't speak of actually same thing. Dr Demming said drive out.Fear is, if fear is the biggest challenge and detrimine to the performance oforganization. Her. I hear these days a lot of leadersthat I cout talking about fears that they are expressing and they're oftenprojecting it into the employees like it's just me that is fearful, but theyare they fear of this o Covid of will the business continue to grow? Whatwill happen next year? So and it's it's also the fear inside them exactly senseof insecurity. SA is fear of failure, fear of living, losing control, fear of grooming, their successors that theirposition becomes unternable, fear of reporting, accurate numbers, honestnumbers. So it's deeply, you know impacting the organization, so that's avery important role for the organization and also even therecognition reward system has to be read them. If we are used to stability,the business environment, I could clearly say I complete these fiveprojects. I'll report hundred percent I'll get a bonus. Those days are done.Yeah. We saw a lot of a lot of th cos. You know taking the the lowest level salariesright, uting down calaries these days, who show support, to show solidarity toshow that we are all together in this with the employees. Yes, absolutelyother thing. Also is e resilience comes through using multiple... actually take. For example,organization has you know: inoventory management system,asset management system, fraud, control system, winther, payment system, humanresource management system, health and safety management system, quality management system? Supposingthe whole thing one of my system, let's say on inventre management is weak andso. I don't have Romatidium, becausesupply chains have broken down in Coit, so thesilience comes down or I don'thave effective fraud control system. So maybe there is some fraud happeningwhich people don't organization, leaders? Don't know and suddenly youfind we are exposed to huge debt liht, our Isin, our INO information.Secuity management system is not adequate or effective, so you suddenlyfind the customers records are gone. Another very important thing is to havebest practices and international standards and ever holistic danagement system,which is working and well integrated to workwith each system seamlessly effortlessly even outside theorganization. Beae lot of businesses is outsource today you know, so you can't allow disuptionto happen at the boundaries of the organization Likeoyeah, like a bank cashis collected and disversed, and the at Machine Bya thrird party, alot of airlines have third party doing secrety checks, so you can't let that happen for littlean we had a similar situation with thefreelancer community, a lot of them in Servia sove top top. I think not onlyin Europe but in world by the number of freelancers. Well and people are oftenusing this paoneer platform and then what happened in, I think, O April orMarch it just you know the bank accrounts just Bros, so some onehundred thousand people in Serbia, their credit cards- were prosen. Theycouldn't get calaries nothing, so it's a huge FIS ting for for individualthats people working from home as well. Ah, absolutely that this is a goodexample of not being prepared and not being fully resilient. Yes, but I heard I'm trying O to resume what wewere discussing today. You said that vision is important, yes, yeah, butthen also to manage this fear or the anxiety to to contain the anxiety inthe company normally arises with suddenmend tesomet changes and alsowith procedures and structures yeah with them into place. Yoll try toforesee as much as possible or, as you said, instead of making porcasts to make alldo you call them strategics, SNALO planning scenario planning? Yes, yes,yeah other thing ID missed, I didn't emphasize Enofgh is the importance ofsharing information and knowledge. Communication is very, very important Mand second, is the collaboration with the you know: External CommunityCollaboration for knowledge. Collaboration for resources is in thiscoid vaccine is an outstanding example of global collaboration. It's not justone lab or company has done it behind...

...the scene. Lot of people have beenworking and working to make it happen, and collaboration is going to onlyfurther go up in the world, because techogy has enabled us to collaborate like w you and me Arco.Yes, I was going to say that, yes, so, and information sharing and Peter Songewho came out to the concept of learningorganization through his book, Fi discipline is play a very, veryimportant role in especially in service and knowledge basedorganizations. Information is everything, so leadership also has toensure the information flows quickly and it is we learn from it and quicklyimprove. Is it continuous improvement andinprovisation is hallmark of a good resilientoanization? We have another another characteristic, ofene orisalanorganization CORRECTO. I wanted to ask you because this is becoming a thing ina few years and perhaps it's a bit exacerpated by this digital divide with people who can workfrom home and who cannot work from home and we are expecting another hugedivide in the next ten years or so with organizations that's going to havedifferent generations working together in theshame. Yes, how do you think? Well? Do you think wewill become more resilient with this, or will it hinder us in a way making thecollaboration that more difficult, or do you think it's going to beproductive? It's a very, very interesting good, visualized questionImus compliment you for that. The my initial imigeat first thought came wasthe movie the intern? You know you have Robert Dmero, Oh yes, yes, wsogs arthere and he come to this sod boot and tie looking for the proper office. Then hesees the C on a cycle inside the office. So going back to your question is b is two things are very important which arehappening. You know the rapid changes in the technology and theway we work and think and collaborate is changing very very fast. We need to remain relevant and beneficial in the changing business,ouwork environment, right even this generation, which is in s and s now inthirty years they will be feeling the same actually right, so weneed to remain up to date. What is very important is: Can I give value to thestakeholders of the organization that should drive rather than the age on thegender or the demogramphics right? Having said that, it is easy to saythat you know giving value, but we need to adapt to each other is it? Diversity willalways bring a lot of benefit, a lot of research to support that a nevecity inthinking, ther, wes sity in age devasity in management styles, a lot ofstartups also demand and expect, and...

...look towards people who had twuntythirty forty years of experience, but at the same time senior person should not think that I'mmore experienced so I'm lihe, maybe the young guys, have a lot of bright ideaswhich I'm not able to visualize or understand all have to adapt and adjustto make it happen. There's no trait answer to that, but Ibelieve giving value and remaining relevant and beneficial to t society is very important. We need to adapt ourworking methods sue that I win this goat example. Now millions are workingfrom home. Many people didn't know how to workfrom home. Yes, they never thought it would be possible sbutely, but it's a good example how resiliantwe people are Yeahoh yeah, absolutely absolutely, and I think we are a bit of you know,talking a lot around the topic and we are starting to grow into to go into some other topics. But I wasthinking about this learning organization that you mentioned t anhow the learning in organizations will change as soon as the workforceis madeof people who are now in their you know, twtis and, and the learning will become, the organization will possibly becomeeven more resilient with these young people full of energy having to learn quickly and to AthaptEly. Absolutely I mean it can, and I think is- can lead to a big competitiveadvantage. I se because information is running the whole. It's the wild newwile of the economy. You know organizations are floating oninformation, all those big ditanalytics and using elgota thins to analyze,cutomer, behaviors and performances. So all this data analytics and all isleading to learning organization and how cuickly we adapt to that. It's avery pawerful. I love the work of Dr Sunday and I keep you know. Reading or thisknowledge, forands and knowledge management is beautiful. Actually, we will share the links so that thelisteners can wether Jispleaseyeah, yeah and and the links to your websiteas well, so that people can yeah see what more about it yeah so te. Yes, I think we can. We can perhapsstop recording now and thank the listeners for E or listening yes, yeahyeah. I would do with this. Thank you again Yelena and your organizationIlena consulting in Bell Grade to Fi, to have this conversation on a veryimportant topic and also thank the listeners in advance for taking timeand obtitater listen to the podcast. Should there anyone like to cornectwith us more, they can reach out to Yelena consulting or me, or both weboth will together endeaver and try to address or polite do any services youmay need es. I thank you and a lovely day andthank you for being our guess. Yeah. Thank you.

In-Stream Audio Search


Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (5)