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  • Winners of Excellence Ambassador Episode 1 (September 2017) 

     

    1. Arunesh Ramalingam - Maximum number of best answers. Total answers = 18. Recognized as the winner of September Episode. - Eligible for free participation or nomination in Master Black Belt program and Certificate of Excellence.
    2. Venugopal R - Second highest number of best answers. Total answers = 14. Recognized as another top performer of September Episode. - Eligible for 50% discount in MBB or free nomination in Benchmark Six Sigma Black Belt program and Certificate of Excellence
    3. Nagraj Bhat - Participated in 20 topics. Recognized as another top performer of September Episode. Eligible for 50% discount in MBB or free nomination in Benchmark Six Sigma Black Belt program and Certificate of Excellence.
    4. Anusha Vemuri - Participated in 16 topics. Recognized as another top performer of September Episode. - Eligible to nominate someone for free in Benchmark Six Sigma Green Belt program.
    5. Raghavendra Rao - Participated in 16 topics. Recognized as another top performer of September Episode. - Eligible to nominate someone for free in Benchmark Six Sigma Green Belt program.

     

    Winner Club – Club 37 - The Largest number of total responses and winning responses. Arunesh Ramalingam and Deepti Arora. Deepti is eligible for a free nomination in Benchmark Six Sigma Green Belt Program

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    • One industry sector that is booming globally is Business Analytics. One way to understand this domain is to divide in three parts - Descriptive Analytics (What has happened), Predictive Analytics (Understanding the future), and Prescriptive Analytics (Decision making to influence business outcomes).    There are Analytics experts who do not link well with business excellence and there are business excellence professionals who do not know much about the vast and expanding domain of Analytics.  Benchmark Six Sigma is about to launch Business Analytics courses in January 2018 to address this.   Which among the three Business Analytics areas (Descriptive, Predictive and Prescriptive) are captured by the Lean Six Sigma community reasonably well and which areas still seem largely unexplored? 
    • Hi all, complements of the season to you all. Thank you so much for the great and thoughtful responses. The main crux of the question was what would be our approach to putting the knowledge of needs to best use.          To this there are two possible stages in business: At the time of product/service development or design  - Selecting the most appropriate and techno-commercially feasible needs while catering to the target consumer/end customer and ; Seeking/ retaining  market leadership by continually addressing customer’s needs and expectations – in given market, geographies, product categories and  economies.   While several answers addressed above expectations some of them revolved around explaining what is Kano Model and how different are the basic need from performance need and exciting needs. The focus of assessment was to identify which answer is most close to highlighting the approach in using the knowledge of various needs in business.   Here again it was very tough call to select the answer between Arunesh Ramalingam and Ronak. Both answers were very close, however since we have to select one, we have chosen Mr. Arunesh Ramalingam answer as most appropriate.       Cheers again to the spirit of learning !!” 
    • Kano model is a tool which helps in identifying the basic features, performance features and excitement features of a product or service. Basic features have to be met at all costs to ensure sustainability in market. These type of fetures are must. Without basic features you just don't qualify to be in market. Like if we take an example of pen, it must write well, that's a basic feature for a pen. Another example of basic feature from service industry can be taken from airlines industry where basic feature may be flying and taking passenger from one destination to another. Performance features are directly linked to customer satisfaction, they have kind of linear relationship with customer satisfaction level. The more functionality provided, the higher the satisfaction. In our example of pen one of its performance feature can be that right upto the whole life of its refill its quality of writing should not deteriorate. In our example of airlines industry performance feature can be their past safety record, better the record higher the satisfaction level. Excitement features are those features which delight the customers, something which they don't expect and their presence delights them. Their absence doesn't result in dissatisfaction whereas if the performance features are lacking it will lead to customer dissatisfaction. In our example of pen, a provision to see how much refill ink is remaining can be an excitement feature and in our example of airlines industry comfort and reclining of seats or variety of food can be termed as excitement features. Here it must be noted that, what delights today becomes an expectation tomorrow and hence excitement features may keep becoming performance features. Moreover these excitement features shouldn't come with much of additional cost.  The above analysis is very much useful for the design and development of products / services as it helps in understanding how much emphasis to be given on which feature and how much expenditure to be incurred to include them in out product / service. It also helps us in keep on thinking of new ideas and keep evolving.
    • Kano model : Basic needs, performance needs, and excitement needs. Kano model provides the description and the method to identify the three needs. Once understood for a specific product or a service, what would be your approach for putting these needs to good use?  As customer “ Do I know my needs? Do my needs keep changing? What was my need two years back is no more my need now? What is my need now is no longer be my need in the future?”   So what is my stake? Yes. I know my needs. I can give my needs in verbatim but not in perfection.  My needs are ever changing. As technology grows, the needs keeps changing along with urbanization. Hence my needs are not constant.   What is Kano model? A Japanese consultant – Noriaki kano discovered this kano model. He tried to identify his customer’s needs and requirements. Tried to compare this needs to the product features to fit him in the kano model. Simply to say, he compared customer’s satisfaction to the features of the products offered to him. Before delevoping a Kano model, it is important to understand the following three things. 1.     What is the customer satisfaction level in terms of product features? – “Satisfaction Vs. Functional level of product features. 2.     A Product features 3.     A Customer satisfaction survey / Need survey.   1.     Satisfaction Vs. Functionality of the product Satisfaction is measured in a scale of 1- 5, where 1 being mostly dissatisfied and 5 being highly satisfied / delighted. Functional level of the product / service is again measured in 1-5 scale of 1 being Nothing / no use and 5 being the best product / service. Functionality of the product / service means cost, investment, time, and how well the product is implemented in terms of customer usage (the reach of the product, usage definitions, etc). When we say the functionality and satisfaction is related, we can also say there is some waste involved in delighting the customer. Either over processing or overproduction is the usual waste identified along with the concept of Kano model. Eg. When a customer requires a dosa, we will end up trying to delight the customer by giving him the Ghee dosa. In such cases, the Verbatim by the customer is detrimental. And there is a waste involved.   2.     Product Features: Kano, a researcher divides his product/ service features into four distinct categories, which are directly related to customer’s reaction towards the functionality of the product. I.e How well the product features implemented are successful in order to make the customer happy. Eg. When the officer is allotted a office with fan, he will be happy. If he is able to adjust the speed according to the climate, he would be delighted. This was in the past. Now this change is done with air conditioners. The four categories are Indifferent, attractive, performance and must-be.     Indifferent: The product’s presence or absence makes no difference to the customer.  There is no reaction of the customer towards the functionality of the [product. Hence the exists a huge waste of effort, money, time. Must be: These are the basic requirements of the product / service that the customer expects. If we don’t have the basic features in the product bought or the in the service delivered, the customer will not buy. The product will be bad to the customer and it will badly affect the organization. Eg. A washing machine should be able to wash the clothes in the machine. A fridge will keep the fruits and vegetables fresh and cool.   Performance: These are features which will help the organization stay competitive in the market. The more of investment will result in more customer satisfaction. These are a level higher to the basic needs. This is directly proportion to each of the variables. This relationship between satisfacation and functionality of the product is called liner or one dimensional performance in Kano model. Eg. A washing machine should be able to wash, rinse and dry. In addition, you can add the clothes in the middle of the wash. In the fridge, you can add the extra slabs in the slot given to store more.   Delighters/Attractive: This will always cause a positive response to the customer. This is usually attractive to the customer. As the investment is bigger, the bigger the satisfaction / delighters. This uses pull strategy by attractive products. Eg. A washing machine in the requested colors / with pictures decided by the client.   Change Vs. Delighters: As the technology grows , the concept of delighting the customer using kano model is not static. It keeps changing for ever. As I already mentioned, the changes are forever. Hence the Kano model developed is not model to be replicated in the future for the same problem or customer. Hence the conclusion is whatever the anlaysis we do and derive at the kano model, it is not a model to be replicated. This keeps changing. This illustrates the current reality of the customer’s satisfaction and the product functionality.   Approach for using the Kano model is:   You will have to ask two questions… 1.     What will u do if the product is not there 2.     What will u do if the product is given with the basic features. Yes. These are asked to the customer to knwoth e real situation / moment of the product.   Performance – A customer likes to have the featureand dislikes if they donot have. Must be – Customers tolerate to have the product. Soon they will switch. Hence they dislikes if they do not have the features. Attractive – Customer likes the product because he didn’t expect the prodct tto have such mind blowing features.   Conclusion: Kano model is not static. Hence it keeps changing forever for product to product, time to time , due to the technologivcal evolution and rise of competitiors.   Thanks Kavitha
    • In any business, resources are expensive and need to be judiciously expended. Customer is important, but the importance lies in the fact that the customer is the source of profits. Customer satisfaction is very important, which is why the correct needs need to be identified and the right resources need to be expended on fulfilling these needs and keep the customer satisfied.   Typically, there are many hundreds of customer needs that can be identified through various methods. It would be an exercise in futility to try to prioritize each of these needs. Therefore, the sensible approach would be to categorize these needs into a smaller number of groups, prioritize firstly the groups and then the needs within each of the groups.   The Kano model is a useful tool in categorizing these needs as dissatisfiers (Basic requirements), satisfiers (Performance requirements) and delighters (Excitement requirements). Non-fulfillment of dissatisfiers, results in dis-satisfaction, while fulfillment does not increase satisfaction. Fulfillment of satisfiers results in proportional increase in satisfaction. While non-fulfillment of delighters does not result in dissatisfaction, their fulfillment delights the customer.   The irony of customer satisfaction vis-à-vis customer needs is that the most important needs turn out to be dissatisfiers as they are very basic and practically taken for granted. As an extension of this very same irony, a less important need can surprisingly turn out to be a satisfier as these are needs the customer wants to be fulfilled and is willing to pay for it. Therefore, there may be more customer satisfaction obtained by improving fulfillment performance needs rather than that of basic needs. In many cases, the fulfillment of dissatisfiers would be mandated by various regulations related to safety, global product standards etc..   After using the Kano Model to categorize and then prioritize customer needs, the next step would be to convert these using a QFD, to Product or Service Functionalities, Product or Service Design Features, Product or Service Design Specifications and finally Process Specifications. Providing features in the product or service always involves a cost and an estimated additional revenue. To produce the product within the budget allotted, use of resources will need to be on those features that have been identified as satisfiers through the Kano Model. Obviously, the basic needs will need to be fulfilled first because the product does not exist without the, But when it comes to improvement of features, satisfies should get prioritized.
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