The Teradyne Corporation case concludes with the quote “With the best possible processes, but with incapable people, nothing happens. But the opposite is not true. With capable people and lousy processes, a lot can be done.” Top level Teradyne management perceived that the Jaguar Project was “richly staffed” and that adequate resources were dedicated to the project. In most cases, the quality of the people was exceptional and management was dedicated and committed to making the project a success. While there were weaknesses in various processes such as difficult to use process management software tools such as Primavera; the primary source of the project problems was a failure by top management to recognize that the new Jaguar process was effectively an effort to change the corporate culture.
Traditionally, various teams operated with autonomous responsibility and ownership for their projects; reinforced by cultural statements such as telling new recruits “no one would tell them what to do, [it] was their responsibility to dive in and ask the right questions.” The Jaguar project was a sea storm of cultural change. It represented changes in technology, changes in strategic direction, 180 degree changes towards up-front planning and design, regionalization of teams as opposed to local teams, the implementation and utilization of more formal process management software tools and scheduling tools. These changes were more than simply process changes, these changes represented core cultural value changes.
CEO Alex D’Arbeloff had earlier made significant changes when implementing a “total quality management” (TQM). However, this change was backed up by intensive training and management insistency that everyone follow and implement these TQM methodologies, principles, and practices in their work. Subsequent to the TQM implementation, D’Aberloff identified two primary problem areas; Engineering was over committed (in some cases with capacity utilization at 300%)...
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