Hitachi Koki Europe Ltd/Hitachi Koki Japan
Having Retired from day to day activity in the factory , I am now be a Director of the Dublin Company and a Corporate Advisor to Japan. This entails Advisory support to the Global Corporation in areas such as European Legislation, Market advice and Competitor analysis. As a Director of the Dublin facility I remain available to the Management to support them in problem solving, crisis management, industrial relations and business development.
Like most ambitious people I did my utmost to reach the top. But Hitachi Koki Ltd, my parent company had a life history of having a Japanese MD on the ground in every location. So having reached General Manager level I assumed that was my pinnacle in the company. However life was to take a new turn and I was appointed the first ever non Japanese Managing Director in our long and successful history.
Naturally I made immediate plans to be the best facility we had, being European we were naturally the most expensive. So we had to be different, my vision was to be the best. With my handpicked management team we set about change in a phenomenal way. We needed to be cost effective but Quality was paramount. So a lot earlier than most we began to promote innovation, something I had not seen much of in manufacturing here but badly needed. We empowered our people in the manufacturing to be open in their thinking ways, right down to the unskilled people, who contrary to the belief of many are the people that make you successful. So began a most interesting period of my life. I had an exceptionally efficient facility producing top quality products at a rate faster than most. Everyday was a challenge and another idea for change. As a traditional manufacturing facility your key is your production staff, many consider them cast away waste, for us they were survival and worked hand in hand with us. We hit new highs in output for years through innovative engineers who knew the people were more important than the process and so the unskilled approved the designs of the highly educated engineers. Many innovative ways of working did nothing to increase output, but made life easier for the operator, that was just as important.
So we became a model facility where thousands of customers from Europe came to visit and see Hitachi Power Tools in production. They walked the work areas free to speak to anyone and ask member of staff about their work, but we had nothing to fear. We were and still are a success.
Hitachi Koki Europe Ltd