Developing Innovative Products by Using Management Approaches
- Name: Mumtaz ud Din
- Position: Plant Manager / DGM
- Organization: Biafo Industries Limited, Hattar, KPK, Pakistan
“Altitude depends on Attitude” This is what exactly he experienced in the organization’s journey. Here he challenged himself beyond the limit and therefore was able to touch heights that no one expected him to be able to reach. He made things happen. He believed that difference between “The best and the Rest” is implementation. He realized that one may have plethora of data, information and ideas but in the end, it comes down to decisiveness.
The Innovative Approach
The managers by and large take no risk nor do they put their jobs at risk. They go for SOPs and make sure that things sustain and keep moving.
He takes calculated risk, puts job at risk, ventures into unknown, unheard of areas, takes initiative to create new SOPs doing away with old paradigms.. He is Mumtaz ud Din Plant Manager / DGM Biafo Industries, Hattar. He transformed a routine production company into highly innovative company saving import bill of millions of dollars & contributed in nation building process through sustainable growth. This calls for a unique blend of courage, self-confidence, risk taking capacity, logical approach and analytical capabilities.
Mumtaz was in middle management cadre responsible for Inventory Management, Administration & compliance of Quality Control System. He is a keen observer & learner and started learning various techniques and tools necessary for continuous improvement in the company. Extensive exposure / training at National and International level on Quality & Productivity Improvement further augmented his thrust to bring Qualitative & Quantitative changes in the organization. He realized the value of playing a role of a coach / mentor and a guiding father instead of being an old fashioned manager. He adopted a novel approach of combining Human Resource and Quality Improvement drive to inculcate spirit of innovation in the industry.
This was his pre-entrepreneurial period where his skills and thoughts are nurtured and polished.
The Start of Entrepreneurial Journey -Promotion as Plant Manager
Mr. Mumtaz was promoted as Plant Manager at the time when survival of the company was a serious concern after resignations of qualified / experienced Plant Managers. The organization was making 3-5 routine products and selling to fixed permanent customers. In our culture of daily routine job, everybody was happy remaining in comfort zone without being exposed to a challenging and innovative environment. The company was often in financial crisis due to monopoly of 40 years old well established competitor, our captive culture of non-acceptance of new technology, no orders & disturbed cash flows. It was a challenge for the newly promoted Plant Manager. He took it as an opportunity. He applied simple management tools & techniques, blended with openness in order to ensure survival, growth & competitiveness of the company..
He developed an entrepreneurial leader inside and it was time now to test. The entrepreneurial journey starts now.
Demonstration of entrepreneurial Leadership – The Human Resource Route
Mr. Mumtaz knew secret of managing people with simple philosophy of Respect, Involvement & Appreciation / Recognition as well as creating Team Work Spirit. He started conducting brain storming sessions at floor level to bring change in attitude of workers toward life & work. He believed that attitude of people counts 90% in their work performance. It was the moments of joy in the company as a purely production company was geared to create good habits, positive thinking, change of attitudes, work ethics, professional values and compliance behavior. He took no notice of negative criticism around and kept on his march towards Human Resource Development without getting unnerved. He acted as Change Agent to improve quality of life of others. Employees were empowered with sense of ownership which is essential for any progressive, innovative company. They were inspired to believe in the progress of company for mutual beneficial growth & across the board benefits for all stake holders. He cultivated culture of out-of-box thinking, emphasizing innovativeness, experimentation & calculated risk taking behavior.
In a short period, he was able to develop Innovative Teams / Cross Functional Teams with support of the management to ensure survival, growth & competitiveness of the company at national & International level.
Demonstration of Entrepreneurial Leadership- The Kaizen Management
The break through initiative of Mr. Mumtaz was to create culture of continuous improvement in order to meet serious financial constraints & best utilization of meager available resources for smooth operation of plant. He did not advocate for breakthrough ideas and out of the box inventions to revolutionize the world. He was humble, inspiring, accessible, family oriented and caring Professor of Practice. He simply Bench marked best practices / competitors & challenged employees to excel, feel proud of their achievement & beat their own performance.
As Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said.. Alas…”one whose two days are equal is a looser and the one whose today is worse than yesterday is accursed”.
He was able to transform the organization & make them realize that greater satisfaction lies in being a part of continuous improvement drive in every aspect and dimensions. Slogan of “BIAFO FAMILY “ further strengthened Ownership attitude so that everybody could contribute in bringing betterment as a Family Member, generating Ideas to save cost & giving valuable inputs to bring consistency in quality of products. Customer focused approach was adapted as a key.
Mr. Mumtaz is a DGM but turned into a ROLE OF COACH / MENTOR to bring a CULTURAL CHANGE. He conducted sessions on Behavior & Secret of Success, Ethical beauty of Islam, SOP of Human Mind & Dreams, Attitude choice & Habits, Character Building & Self Accountability, Ideas for Continuous Improvement, Multitasking & a Peaceful, Successful & Joyous life.
He inspired his team with Participatory Management Attitude & refreshed DNA of company by announcing various incentives. He planned, developed & practically implemented RESPECT, APPRECIATION & RECOGNITION of THOSE who were REAL Contributors in achieving goals / objectives for progression of the company.
He implemented merit base selection, started Orientation Programs & refined appraisal system to be used as a tool for highlighting achievements & establishing clear objectives for all employees.
“What I Say I Mean It” philosophy was truly followed for a good incentive system. This derived employees to believe and act on the principles of Kaizen Philosophy for sustaining as a leading and pace Setter Company of Pakistan.
The culture of organization was transformed into a very healthy, innovative and positively charged environment, a basic perquisite of any innovative company.
Demonstration of Entrepreneurial Leadership- The Infrastructure Innovations
Mumtaz & his team turned into real innovation and technology up-gradation / BPR in the company. He prepared a list of imported materials in the company & challenged team for the development of substitution. Success story started unfolding bit by bit, step by step, inspiring lectures of self-made Professor of Practice acting as a catalyst. Soon the number crossed 10 import substitutions making positive impact on people mind, organization’s sale, cash flows, bottom line figures and higher management trust in team’s ability to deliver.. New materials were developed, tools were reverse engineered, high precision machines were designed, locally fabricated & installed, processes were developed and production were increased from 20~100 %. Thus Company / Pakistan were able to save billions of rupees over the years through Indigenization Initiative started in 2003.
Demonstration of Entrepreneurial Leadership- The Product Innovations
After crossing over successfully the “surviving phase”, Mr. Mumtaz & Team shifted gears towards “Thriving Phase” with further product innovations. Again he prepared a list of potential products being imported in Pakistan related to company production line. His innovative and now experienced team, work hard to prioritize substitution of few critical products. The new challenge of increasing product range of company was given to team backed by continuous Brain Storming session…. WE CAN DO IT BELIEF & EXCEL & SELF PRIDE..
This was a bigger and multifaceted target now. The product, the process & complete assembly line has to be developed locally & quality compliance of highly specialized products must meet International Standards.
Team went through a series of experiments, failures & successes & ultimately the company was on road to innovate products. The range crossed 10 products with high market demand, low cost, meeting international standards and is being produced in the local plants of the company. The production was further increased from 10 ~ 50%. In a short period of 16 years company become a National Leader in specialized products. The number of products increased many fold, employee strength increased significantly resulting increased sales, sustained cash flow, net profit increased & management ensured distribution of benefits across the board.
Biafo ensured supply of many previously imported products to National & Multinational companies involved in National Development Sectors. Products are also being exported to many countries contributing to national foreign exchange reserves. Customers are very happy & excited due to Quality, Cost effectiveness & timely Delivery as company applies JIT Philosophy. Now company is in a position to deliver products in 24 hours..
The exceptional progress achieved by the company resulted in winning prestigious awards at national & international levels. For example… “Leadership in Quality Award by BID, France, A Role Model Company in Pakistan by APO, Tokyo, Japan for Quality & Productivity Improvement, Satha Innovation Award and Winner of Top 25 Companies of Pakistan Award from Karachi Stock Exchange for consecutive four years.
Mr. Mumtaz ud Din used the social and soft side of associates to lead the culture of innovations. His case study proves that hard skills related to engineering, tooling, machining and material composition can be acquired. The first task of an innovation manager is developing Positive Attitudes towards life & work that are pre-requisites for innovation.
He advocates for working on the self-belief system of the employee. He advises to develop innovation incentive system in the organization. He thinks that output & revenue enhancement is the lagging components i.e the outcome of the leading ones such as employee empowerment, development, recognition and innovation and technology.
The Managers must exhibit exemplary attitude for creating environment of trust & confidence with openness that results in OWNERSHIP attitude & ensuring progression of any organization.
Mr. Mumtaz incorporated innovation DNA in the social structure of the organization and succeeded.
Negah boland, sohan dilnawaz, jaan pursoz
Yahe hay rahtay saffar, mir e karwan kay liyay…
Maana ke iss jahaan ko gulshan na kar sakay
Kaantay to kuch hatta diyay, guzray jedhar say ham….
Indigenization Initiative & Impressive Volume of Work Achieved By Biafo Family (Improvement Journey Started in 2003)
- Designing, fabrication & installation of three Distillation Units for self-reliance for manufacturing of strategic material as part of self-reliance drive
- Development of Delay Detonators for mining, quarrying, construction & hydro power projects
- Development of High Precision Seismic Detonators for seismic survey used in oil & gas exploration, carried out by National & Multinational companies
- Designing, Indigenous fabrication & installation of Lean Assembly Line for Binel production specialized requirement for tunneling work
- Designing & Standardization of new formulations of S.Blaster EXP-II, S.Breaker-100, Anfo special & Seismic Hard for Strategic projects like Lowari Tunnel, Bhasha Dam, Saindak Copper & Gold mines & Oil & Gas exploration sectors etc
- De-ionized water production at our boiler house for manufacturing of initiators
- Development of Cross laminated film from local trade market to stop costly imports from EU & USA
- Development of PC 24/4 & 24/5 from Faisalabad trade market to stop costly import from Korea
- Development of Al wire of required specs for clipping from Gujranwala trade market to stop costly imports from EU & USA
- PD capacity enhancement from 16500 ~ 42500 / day by applying Kaizen / Lean Manufacturing Assembly Line just costing Rs. 475,000/-
- Key Product capacity enhancement from 15 ton ~ 24 ton / day by applying Kaizen
- S.B-100 capacity enhancement from 4.5 ton ~ 32 ton / day by applying Kaizen
- Conversion of two discarded SF manufacturing machines into dual machines for DC manufacturing machines to enhance capacity from 5000m ~ 10,000m / day
- Development of automatic Identification & Traceability System at critical manufacturing unit from available resources
- Rehabilitation of two obsolete / discarded 1940 model tube drawing machines for self-reliance to stop costly imports from China
- Up-gradation of DOS based PLC with Window based PLC (sourced from containerized market) for critical process of highly exothermic reaction
- Designing & fabrication of critical spare parts for Katridge Packing Machine form Gujranwala trade market
- International Color Coding Scheme for process hazard identification & safe operations
- Energy conservation initiative resulted in saving of millions over the years.