“Um Povo sem memoria, nao tem futuro”.

I learned that maxim from one of the most famous and popular Brazilian writer, composer and singer Paulinho da Viola; in other words, it means that a country without memory doesn’t have any future.

I personally believe that a Company without memory doesn’t have a future as brilliant as other having this quality.

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In 20 years of consulting activities I have had the chance to observe many different companies in industry in different industrial sector. My chance also was to work several times for the same company, at different time intervals, which give me the opportunity to observe the reality of this maxim.

In one of this company  this company I asked one day the following question to the senior vice president supply chain: “how does it come that in this company when you do something very well in supply chain, like the first implementation of an ERP system, the next time you run the same kind of project, it fails?

How does it come when you do something wrong, the next time you run the same kind of project, it’s failing again?”

I was not expecting any answer from the VP; I gave it myself, because I think I knew the answer from experience and observation.

The right answer obviously was: MEMORY

The memory that the first ERP project was a success because its leader had all the talents and the credibility to drive the change within the organization.

The memory that the participants also were chosen among the best in the expertise area (quality, production, supply chain, finance…) not second roles.

The memory that the team was composed of junior people, together with more experienced guys, supported by external experienced consultant in business’s processes and systems.

The memory that the other project failed, simply because it was essentially “system driven” and because none of the ingredients of the previous ERP project were present:

The question now is how to keep memory in organizations?

I found answers, reading Peter Senge’s book “The fifth discipline” in which he popularized the concept of the “learning organization”. I am really encouraging you to read this fabulous book.

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Other ideas could come from a better understanding of the wedge´s role in the continuous improvement philosophy.

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Finally, another question to ask is how to “pass the baton” to newcomers, to a new generation of managers that sometimes only have the objective to throw away what was done, good or bad, before them, for the sake of existing.

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For this category of managers, I strongly encourage the reading of Pierre de Villier´s book “What is a Chief” in which he just said:

“I admire this young generation, I know young people in general are animated by a sincere humanism, by great plans, full of meaning.

But, being younger, pretending to be animated by the fire of passion, does not exclude a high level of excellence to meet the expectations of the future world and the robustness of new ideas or organizations, …

It would be a mistake to believe that the new world erases the old; on the contrary, it transforms each era, bringing its stone to the edifice, but the cornerstones remain.

Obviously new technologies will replace us one day, like robots for example, but they won’t erase us, on the contrary.

In each generation, pride can blind us and make us think that we can change the world brutally, but reality is always tragic when it reappears” (Pierre de Villiers).

Emmanuel de Ryckel 

“If you don’t know Your future … Invent it ” 🇧🇷2020🇧🇪