Keys to Accelerating Execution in Business

In this, The Faces of Business, Trevor Calder, Founder, The Execution Factor, talks about the keys to accelerating execution in business so leaders can ensure their strategies come to life.

In this, The Faces of Business, Trevor Calder, Founder, The Execution Factor, talks about the keys to accelerating execution in business so leaders can ensure their strategies come to life.

Trevor brings 30+ years of problem-solving and leadership experience in international business. His education and certifications in engineering and other key philosophies like lean, Six Sigma, Theory of Constraints, and quality assurance provide Trevor with tremendous process skills. His experience in building processes and helping companies execute in various industries have given him the real-world experience to quickly pinpoint bottlenecks reducing execution speed and getting them out of the way.

Trevor Calder, “The Executioner,” collaborates with his clients to shift their execution capabilities to “ludicrous mode,” where they get more things done. In his quest to accelerate his client’s long-term economic growth, Trevor’s improved organizational effectiveness leads to increased financial success.

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Trevor recently released his book, “Execution at Ludicrous Velocity,” which helps readers understand how they can increase their execution speed to improve business results.

Damon is pleased to welcome Trevor to this Livestream. He is interested in what kicked-started the Execution Factor. The Executioner replies that his company has evolved. He believes that dreams cannot become a reality unless we take practical measures in that direction.

We focus on planning. But there is a downside. If we Google planning, we’ll get bombarded. Moreover, between dreams and reality, execution is a missing factor. “What gets missed or underrated is the execution factor,” he maintains.

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In his view, long-term planning “is obsolete” because “it’s based on a static set of assumptions.” On the contrary, reality is ever-changing. Now we plan to use situations for our benefit that makes a difference. We must consider critical factors. Execution is about being reactive and dynamic in a given situation.

Damon asks Trevor about the Theory of Constraints (TOC) and other extensive training the latter has received in manufacturing. Damon further asks the latter how he applies his tremendous knowledge in his work.

According to Trevor, the Theory of Constraints tells us where to focus on delivering the greatest value, unlike the other methodologies.

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Lean Six Sigma, as Trevor explains, is a methodology that employs teamwork to eliminate waste and lower variation to boost performance. To get rid of the different types of waste, it combines lean manufacturing/lean enterprise with Six Sigma. “All waste is created equally.”

He further elaborates on the idea with an example. By eliminating waste in execution, he intends to ensure that the service resources always get something to work on. “And it’s really looking at it holistically.” In his opinion, Lean Six Sigma is a good tool for dealing with this problem. Moreover, in Trevor’s view, TOC is more reliable than any other tool. “It brings it back to the bottom line results.”

Damon adds that the TOC is a great way to look at what we should work on first because very few organizations have the resources to work on everything. Even if we work on everything, it may not be what we want because we might work on an area that is a constraint in our flow and process. “It does show us where we should focus.”

Damon asks him if these courses and approaches have helped Trevor reap the desired result.

Trevor believes these approaches have rendered a very holistic structure. They are guidelines and principles. Moreover, they are flexible. We “don’t have to follow it to the letter.” Although it is advisable to follow the book with Lean and the TOC, a slight difference in the application will not harm.

Furthermore, they made work easier to some extent. They try and optimize their local department at the expense of the overall system. To Trevor, these approaches have been a breakthrough. They positively impact their throughput, inventory, and operating expense.

Trever has “a little bit of advice” for those who want to execute better.

Fundamental principles are making things visible. Working smoothly in teams to run a department is a common approach. People rely on “inputs from someone else.” Similarly, we can often see what’s happening in the other departments. Quite often, many problems occur at the interface between one department and the next.

As a result, we can start collaborating to solve those problems “and recognizing that adds value.” We must think about the resources we allocate to fix that problem. “Now, all of a sudden, instead of spending time, it’s not going to help flow.” There has to be a unified priority system (UPS). If we want each department to do a good job, we’ll group things to maximize the output and reduce setups. By aligning the priorities, we are not only better able to focus but also better able to perform. It leads to measurements. It is our responsibility to match local measurements with global measurements.

Damon asks Trevor how many times the Executioner has stepped into situations where one department has slowed down another without realizing it. “That happens all the time,” exclaims Trevor. To align businesses, they need a bigger picture.

There is a need to use a visual board to establish priorities. They must focus on the first blockages to ensure a smooth workflow.

In Trevor’s view, streamlining systems guarantees value-added time. That results in more flow, more throughput, and the results. Trevor believes it has helped him reduce lead times by 25% to 30%.

In the same fashion, the Executioner asserts that thinking about execution gives him X-ray vision. In his guess, it is about visibility that he can see the big picture while departments can’t. “Because they’re in a fog.” He can, in his words, see not only where the problems are but also “see future problems coming.” So, he helps them make adjustments and avert damages.

Damon invites the guest’s comments on protective flow manufacturing. According to Trevor, it is a software tool “specifically tailored for manufacturers.” He has talked about it in his book. Manufacturers can focus on the most important tasks or work quickly.

He explains its execution step by step. After creating a priority, we devise a plan, and then we execute the plan. But if we plan something for weeks, it gets less accurate and more uncertain. So, using this particular flow, “instead of planning and executing, we first execute, and then we plan.” The boards use these principles to look at red tags.

He discloses that flow has become his core offering. “It comes very naturally to me because I’ve done a lot of ERP implementations and things over the years.” Trevor helps them “focus on delivering value.” He is “eliminating the light problem.” He also aids businesses in increasing throughput, and cash flow is improving. “So that’s becoming my core, my core product, and my core focus.”

Trevor’s approach to solving bottlenecks impresses Damon.

The conversation comes to a close with Damon thanking Trevor for his life.

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problem, execution, toc, flow, priority, visibility, organization, work, trevor, throughput, execute, bit, guess, department, book, focus, process, people, principles, planning


Trevor Calder, Damon Pistulka


Damon Pistulka  00:00

All right, everyone, welcome once again to the faces of business. I’m your host, Damon Pistulka. And I’m excited for our guests. Today, we got Trevor color here. Today, we’re going to be talking about the keys to accelerating execution. And if anybody knows how much I like making things happen and executing, you just got to read my profile on LinkedIn, because I think in there somewhere it says, I make things happen. So, Trevor, awesome having you here today. I’m excited for our conversation.


Trevor Calder  00:36

Me too. Thanks for having me.


Damon Pistulka  00:39

Yeah, yeah. So So Trevor.


Trevor Calder  00:44

Now you,


Damon Pistulka  00:45

you focus on execution. And I think this is just, it’s unique. First of all, I don’t and with your company, the execution, execution factor? What really started off where you just said, you know, I gotta focus on execution.


Trevor Calder  01:05

Question, so, um, I guess, it’s kind of evolved over time. And, you know, and quite often, we all have plans, but it’s not till we actually execute the plan that something happens. You know, it’s that kind of someone’s gonna plan to like dreams, if you like, you know, I was thinking about doing this or doing that.

So it’s not till we actually go off to do it, and then okay, now it becomes a reality. And, yeah, the focus always seems to be on like planning, if you go out there, and you want to do a Google search, on training on planning, you’ll just get bombarded. You know, everybody’s, like, looking for execution out there. There’s very, very little, and it seems to be it’s like the missing factor. And, you know, I wanted to be first off code execution Jedi, and then, you know, get Sif done. But I think the folks that didn’t, it wasn’t like that. So I had a little bit of advice from some people.

And so I tweaked it, and, you know, just sort of thinking it through. And it’s really, I think what gets missed or underrated is the execution factor in what we go to do. And if your business is trying to execute this strategy, or manufacturing, scheduling, and then trying to go off and create that, it’s really not so much the planning, like planning is important. But soon as you know, we plan things and it’s like, give it a short period of time. And that planning is kind of obsolete is because it’s based on a static set of assumptions.

You know, that, okay, we’re going to have these machines or this is going to happen and everything’s going to be great. Reality is something goes wrong, and it’s always changing. So it’s really how we can react to that situation that makes a difference. And then trying to drill it down. So what are the key factors, the important things that we need to focus on to make sure that everything’s moving along? It’s really about being reactive and dynamic about the about situation where you still trying to get to your goal, still aim for the outcome, but how you get there might be slightly different?


Damon Pistulka  03:05

Yeah. Good, good. So you’ve got a lot of, you’ve got training in a wide variety of different methodologies in manufacturing. And when you look at your, your history, I mean, you’ve got Lean and Six Sigma and, and theory of constraints. So and some other quality certifications, too. I mean, there’s a lot in there, I just touched the surface. So what do you think going through those methodologies, the different ones, and in really understanding them, then you’ve got a tremendous amount of work experience where you apply them? What are some that really stick out to you today that have the most practical value as you’re working with people?


Trevor Calder  03:52

Submit to me, I think the Theory of Constraints has got to be the one I think everyone in the TOC through the constraints community. Yeah, we don’t understand why everybody doesn’t love it as much as we do. Yeah, I think, you know, some of the time it can be maybe a bit academic.

But really, at the end of the day, the thing that I really like about TOC, as opposed to the other methodologies, it tells us where to focus that’s going to deliver the greatest value. Yeah, like, if you just take like a Lean or Six Sigma, you go, Okay, well, there’s problems here. There’s waste, therefore, you know, should be eliminated. And I guess, to a large extent, kind of lanes thinks that, you know, all waste is created equally.

What do you see, Congress has a bit of a different view and saying, Well, look, this waste is more important than that waste, and maybe in some of the ways like lean kind of tries to eliminate waste everywhere, where, from a TSA perspective, some of that we don’t consider it to be waste. That’s protection. Like you know, for example, making sure that your service resources always got something to work on, is protected. mechanism for that resource the other guy’s run out? Well, it doesn’t matter, because it’s all gonna have to come through this resource. And it’s really looking at it holistically.

And that’s, that’s the other good thing. Like it doesn’t, you know, as with some of the other methodologies, the assumption is like, if we deal with all the little pieces individually and get them working really well, that then the whole thing will flow nicely. But it doesn’t work like that. That’s why no one’s really getting a lot of the results that we expect with, you know, materials. He comes in and goes, Okay, well, let’s look at this holistically. And let’s, let’s kind of focus, so then you go, Okay, well, this area is the problem. So maybe lean is a good tool, or Six Sigma is a good tool for dealing with this particular problem.

Yeah, and you know, in some cases, like, and that’s the other thing, well, guess what, six sigma versus TOC, like, takes me almost says, well, let’s eliminate waste. Let’s get rid of it all. It’s also not waste variation. When TOC kind of says, well, let’s accept it. You know, we know that there’s going to be some variation, and we buffer for it. So we allow for it. And then we don’t have to worry about being so precise. That’s not the same some circumstances where, you know, reducing the variation doesn’t make sense. But it’s about you know, getting Okay, getting focused on this as a problem area. Now, what’s the best tool to solve this?


Damon Pistulka  06:25

I think? Well, I think you’ve described that well, because TOC, I love listening to you describe it, because we’re getting into the background of what I think is really, really key in the execution work you do. But you know, when you look at theory of constraints like that, that is a great way to look at what should I work on first, because very few organizations have the resources to work on everything.

And as you said, even if we work on everything, it may not be what we want, because I might work on an area that is a constraint in my in my flow or process or whatever. But I may not do enough to make it. So it’s not a constraint anymore. And I really didn’t do anything more than the incremental improvement I got out of it. But it does show you where we should focus our efforts is the big thing.


Trevor Calder  07:20

Absolutely. And it brings it back to the bottom line results, because obviously, as an organization, you know, we need to get work through our organization. That’s what matters at the end of the day. Because you know, if one department’s running faster, but we’re not really getting any more out, well, then, you know, in some cases, yes, you might be helping to reduce your operating expense, which obviously has a bottom line impact, which is great. And I think you know, typically with those other methodologies kind of you know, the squeaky wheel gets the grease. So, you know, you might have this noisy, noisy area, noisy department, and they get all the focus and the resource to fix them when really, there’s not really overall benefits for the whole organization. A little bit skewed like that. So.


Damon Pistulka  08:04

So as you look at this and working at as you did in the past, you got some great experience there. How do you think that that really prepared eyou to do what you do now and execution? Is it the fact that you had to work on so many processes? I mean, you’re a quality auditor, you are there a lot of things that you are doing there? So


Trevor Calder  08:28

I think it’s, it’s it really, to me, it gives me like a structure, I think, a very holistic structure that you can apply when somebody seems like guidelines, their principles, and it’s like, you don’t have to follow it to the LI to the letter, you could have you will see that with Lean. And even with TOC, there’s kind of too much, you know, following the book Exactly. Yeah. When really, you’ve got to be well, this environment and might be some of the principles still apply and how you apply that principle in this environment is slightly different.

Or maybe in another environment, this principle, well doesn’t have too much of an impact. So it’s, it’s kind of a bit of different tools and the toolbox, I guess, through the experience, and then that just gives me the real holistic structure. Because I’ve done things in the past it’s um, it’s really what I learned today, I think, cheese, I got really bad for a while because a lot of the things I work to set up and structure Well, I kind of realized all of a sudden they didn’t really add any value. They just kind of created work or not less credit work.

They made work easier in some extent, but they didn’t have a bottom line impact on overall impact. And some of these things were kind of I guess one thing we often say in TOC is like local optima. You know, we try and optimize our local department at the expense of the overall system is And that was a real kind of a breakthrough for me in terms of being okay. Now let’s look at that big picture, and what’s the impact on our and our throughput our inventory and operating expense. And then through that able to focus a lot more and, you know, get things to flow.


Damon Pistulka  10:16

Yeah. Yep. Good stuff. Good stuff. So when you’re talking about execution, and you’re looking at your look, you’re going in and starting to talk to somebody about, hey, they want to improve execution. So we’re going to sit down, we’re going to start talking about things, what are some of the first conversations that you’re gonna have with a client as you’re going in there, and they want to go, they want to execute better?


Trevor Calder  10:44

Right? Yeah. So I guess the couple of the key principles are the making things visible. Because, you know, normally, if you think about a department, we’ve normally got good visibility with inside our own department, or that one department, you know, we all kind of know each other, we work together, we kind of take inputs from someone else, we do something and then it goes out. So we can often see what’s going on in the other departments, you know, quite often, a lot of the problems occur at the interface between one department and the next. And sometimes they’ve got different objectives. So they’re creating, we kind of engineered conflicts into our processes some of the time.

So by making the visible, we’re then able to get everybody to see the situation. And they can get this shared view. So if we, if I’m making it visible, we’re kind of laying out the basic processes, you know, what steps we have to go through inside the organization, and then where the work is at with inside the organization. So then everyone can kind of see like a big map, we can see, okay, the work stack here, or, you know, we can see that there’s problems in this area. So then we can start to then what departments can start to see their impact on other areas, and vice versa.

So as they can see the big picture, now they can then start to then collaborate, they can start to work together. Because now they kind of go, Okay, well, we need to get this stuff through. And you know, if I’m unhappy with this, well, then I’m going to run out of work next week, or we’re going to be late with this. So we’re making it visible. We’ve given a, I guess, a shared view, and we’ll all agree on, that’s where the works at. And then we can start to you know, okay, well, these are the problems, what are we gonna do to solve those problems? Is a lot of the time.

I guess that’s the other key principle was like value added. And recognizing that, so a lot of things that we do and not always value added, like the immigrants we’re meeting, a lot of the time, we’re kind of chatting about what was workout with the problem? Or who’s to blame? Things like that, we’re not really going okay, well, here’s the situation, here’s where it’s stuck. You know, what do we what resources do we need to allocate to fixing that problem. Now, all of a sudden, instead of the time being spent doing something, it’s not going to help flow, we’re putting the resources on to something that’s going to help flow. And then it will start to happen.

And the other thing that quite often, well, there has to happen as part of that is also like, a unified priority system, or UPS, as I like to call it, as if we think, you know, we want each department to do a good job. So we tend to assign them metrics. So they’ve all got their own metrics and to do a good job, they’re doing what’s best for their department in so that they will try to, for example, and maybe group things together to maximize the output and reduce setups.

But the negative sides of that is summertime while they’re working on things that we don’t need yet. And so that’s going to create working progress upstream, and maybe the guy who’s next in line, or he doesn’t have the bits that he needs, because I’m busy working on something else that we don’t need. So, by having by aligning the priorities now, okay, we’re all got we all agreed that these are our priorities, and we can then start to focus on them, which then I guess leads into measurements. So the you know, we’ve got measurements aligned with, I guess, local measurements aligned with global measurements.


Damon Pistulka  14:22

So when you talk about that, the measurement, okay, let’s back up a little bit. I like to talk about the prioritization because, yeah, you know, what we’re working on first and as far as sequencing of what we need to do first when you start to talk about measurements is, speed through the process is that your primary overall goal is to reduce speed through process from A to Z, or, you know, we’re talking about execution factors that we’re trying to do or what do you use? We work in trying


Trevor Calder  15:01

to get the work through as fast as possible. So I guess if you look, well, what’s stopping it coming through as fast as possible? So some of the time, it might be like, Okay, well, maybe a process takes longer than it should. So that’s one thing that could be improved. But that’s, that quite often takes a lot more effort.

So really, what we’re trying to do is eliminate the non value added time. Work takes so long to get through, because we’ve released too much work. You know, it’s like, if you have to drive into the into work or something, if you leave in the middle of the night, you can get there in half an hour. But if you go peak hour, when everyone out there, it’s gonna take you an hour, it’s the same distance, but you know, from released, you must work well, that slows us down.


Damon Pistulka  15:51

Well, when you look at, I mean, if you do as you do work on lean, you realize that a small fraction of our time is actually doing value added work, and the rest of it’s not. And if you can eliminate that you’re you go a lot faster, a lot easier. So yeah, that’s, that’s a great point in there. So how many this is a good question, when you’re looking at a process like that? How many times do you step into situations where at the intersections of one department to another department they’re doing things to slow the next department down, and they really don’t even realize it?


Trevor Calder  16:28

That happens all the time, really. And it’s not until they can, I think, see the bigger picture that we can start to align them. And that’s really going back to, like, if we’re using a visual board to establish our priorities, really, what we’re trying to do is get the whole organization like representative each organization, because they are representing the different process steps to work together.

And what we really want to focus on first is the blockages, you know, so where has flow stopped. So far works coming along. And you know, I can complete this because I know the tools broken, or the customer hasn’t improved the artwork or something like that, that is a very high priority, because now I’ve done all this work today, and I can’t move on. So our highest priority really is anywhere that the work is stopped. And usually we’d have like a red card to stick on the board so we can make it visible.

Okay, here’s the problem, here’s what you need to do to fix it. And this is the next in, I think, an important one, the potential problems. Like, in that sense, work hasn’t stopped yet. But I might say to you, oh, look, you know, we haven’t got this artwork approval yet. If we don’t have it by two o’clock tomorrow, well, then works can stop. So now we’re starting to be proactive. Because we can kind of tell everybody well look, you know, it’s not a problem yet, but it’s about to be a problem. So then, yeah, we can get everyone photo shoot, we don’t get that done, we’re going to have trouble, we’re going to have trouble.

So that’s kind of our next level of priority. Yeah, and then over and above that, it’s just making sure the day to day stuff and, you know, we then need to talk about things that are flowing normally. To be fair, because, you know, works gonna get released, and it’s gonna get done. And if it’s all just going along merrily, well, it’s not really value added to try to talk about it. Where, you know, if we’re focusing on the things that are stopped or about to be stopped, and that becomes more value added time spent more value added time means more flow, more throughput, and the results


Damon Pistulka  18:41

Yeah, and how many times the people because you talked about getting things visual? And how much does it help just to take that step?


Trevor Calder  18:55

Well, I think people sometimes forgot or didn’t realize that this was causing the other person a problem. So it’s a bit enlightening for them sometimes to go Oh, geez, I had no idea or I can sort of see why you’ve got a problem there and you know, maybe it makes sense that I can help you out and give you some resources or something to fix that now so that you know you’re better off and I’ll be better off in the next few days. Yeah,


Damon Pistulka  19:22

yeah, cuz I in past experience, I’ve seen where that makes it just you know, doing process mapping or something like that. Just walking through the process and talking to talking to the different departments go okay, what do you do now, we are walking through the flow of making something or completing an order or whatever you’re talking about, through the entire organization from the time you receive it, all the way to the time that the product goes out the customers invoice for the product and everything that people do that there’s this is enlightened enlightenment that they gained from that.

It’s like Like, what I’m doing causes you a lot more work or I’m doing something that, as you referred to before, is nonvalue added at all that I don’t even need to be doing anymore, that you should just stop. And I think that when you’re talking about execution, accelerating execution, one, the visual Visualization Step has to be critical in it, I would think. Yeah,


Trevor Calder  20:25

absolutely. It’s one of the first steps really, yeah. Because once you, you know, that’s the foundation for everything, because it’s the foundation tool, basically, to facilitate everything. Because like I was saying before, if until I get that visibility, I just think that, you know, maybe you’re just don’t care about what do I need to do or care about things over? Oh, and they start to we can actually sort of, you know, start to see that we can start to I guess, empathize with others. And you get that right to understanding and that, you know, the bigger picture sort of higher level importance.


Damon Pistulka  21:05

Yeah. So as you’ve done this, what are some kind of before and after speed, throughput speed, or measures that you’re doing? What are some before and after that you’ve seen that are pretty cool when you’ve done this?


Trevor Calder  21:21

You fairly good, like 25 30% reduction, in lead times? Yeah. So things were certainly set to flow a lot faster. And yeah, I guess it depends on the actual situation. Yeah. So they all kind of vary a bit, definitely, you know, we start to get a lot more a lot faster flow through the organization. So 25 30%, not unheard of even faster, sometimes just to get that work, work flowing. And then you get you know, the output and all the benefits that come with it.


Damon Pistulka  21:56

Yeah. Yeah. You talk about X ray vision. Thinking about execution gives you x ray vision. What do you mean by that? I thought that was


Trevor Calder  22:09

correct. Yeah. Yeah. So I guess we’ve been talking about this visibility. Yeah. So normally, the problem is, like, departments can’t, I can see their area, but they can’t see the big picture. It’s all fuzzy. So because they’re, you know, kind of in the fog, so to speak, they can see here and go, Okay, yep, this all makes sense.

And then, by making it all visible, we’re getting what I call an x ray vision, because now I can see the whole process, I can see through everything and where everything’s at. So now I can sort of see not only where it’s at, and I can see future problems coming. So I can kind of crystal ball into the future and go, Well, look, I don’t like what’s happening here, I need to make some adjustments or do some things now so that, you know that future is going to be better forming.


Damon Pistulka  23:02

Yeah, so when you use this process, are you typically using this in a production process? Or is it a business process? Or where do you usually find people applying it the most?


Trevor Calder  23:17

It’s, the principles apply, I guess it’s the whole business. And typically, the problem is related to manufacturers or project environments. Like I was thinking about, you know, do I split the two, and to have like a, you know, one based around projects, and one based around manufacturing, but really, the, the problems are essentially the same, and the principles are the same. They’re just applied differently in different environments. And sometimes, it’s got to do with how we structure the boards, you know, so that you know that this visibility’s execution board, that gives us the visibility.

Like in a manufacturing environment, we might be looking at different orders, for example, with projects we might be looking at different deliverables, or like different projects in the project portfolio. So getting the right level of detail that solves a problem because we want to, we want to keep it simple, but we don’t want to get into too much detail because then becomes too cumbersome. And it’s about striking that right balance that you’re getting the right visibility so that you can go okay, yep, this is simple, it’s easy to manage, we can see where it’s at, and it’s helping us improve the floor.


Damon Pistulka  24:39

Yeah, yeah. That’s good stuff because I tell you from experience, what I’ve seen, you know, the things that you can do when you look at a business and like that, and how it not just the physical but electronic paper, product, you know, all way out to suppliers back to suppliers works all the way through. And when you look at that, it really is amazing how much opportunity there is to get better.


Trevor Calder  25:10

Yeah, sure is, as you know, we’ve tried to obviously do these things in order to, obviously, definitely put those processes in place and some measurements around it. And what have you unite with good intentions? Like saying quite often, it’s just like, it’s the cause of the problem. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So,


Damon Pistulka  25:33

so have you been involved? We’re, you’re doing this and helping somebody and it really makes like a quantum jump. Like, they go, Oh, we just, we just doubled the throughput speed, or cut it in half, or whatever you want to say, but we really made a huge jump. And, if so, what were the kinds of things that they figured out to do that? Because that’s always interesting to see.


Trevor Calder  25:59

Yeah, um, let’s see. So we’ve certainly been, I guess, yes, certain times where we’ve, you know, really created that visibility outside people, you know, outs Well, within the supply chain, next step is, you know, in a project environment has been really able to stay and get confidence as to what’s going on and where it’s at.

Okay, so there’s not often there’s a lot more it couldn’t have, what we think it’s going to be and how it ends up being is very different, you know, start to become a lot more believable. Yeah. And then you start to get that it just becomes easier to for the people quite often. Because they know, okay, well, look, I gotta focus on this. And this, this is more important than trying to focus on everything. And you know, getting all these distractions in the way.


Damon Pistulka  26:56

Yeah, very cool. Very cool. So you, you wrote a book, recently executing at ludicrous philosophy, or velocity. I love the title. So why what really inspired you to write?


Trevor Calder  27:13

Yeah, because I’ve always wanted to, I guess, write a book, and I’ve got this knowledge that, you know, it’s a good way to share it. And, you know, I want organizations to improve and be better, because, you know, when organizations are doing well, well, then that’s good for the economy. And that’s good for everybody.

You know, and so we need successful organizations to, you know, provide goods and services that we all need and to employ people and, you know, make it better for everybody. And so sort of put this knowledge together in a way that I could share it in a way that to that, you know, I tried to write it the book. So instead of split into two sections, the first section is about the principles about, you know, what’s important, like, why is collaboration important, and why is visibility and value at a time. And then in the second half, I put it all together and apply those principles, and explain how to build a visual execution board for your environment.

Oh, so by reading the book, you can go off. And actually, if you’d like to do it yourself type person, you can actually go off and on the intention is you could go off and actually do it and give it a try. Yeah, you can try. And from that, obviously, if you needed more help, well, then okay, well, we can come along and help you. But, you know, horses, of course, is I guess, and sort of tried to create it. So there’s something for everybody. And it also it gives you a bit of a credibility, I guess, cuz you’ve written a book. I’ve written a book on execution now. So it does help in that sense. And,


Damon Pistulka  28:47

yeah, well, then. So as you’re doing this, we talked about I saw something about protective flow manufacturing. And let’s talk about that a little bit, and how that’s a tool in your toolbox and what you’re using that for.


Trevor Calder  29:03

Sure. So, um, protective flow, manufacturing essentially takes a lot of the principles which are in my book, and it does it with software, though it’s specifically tailored towards manufacturers. And I guess if we go up a step, like take a big picture view, yeah. So we want any organization we want everyone to focus on the highest priority jobs or work. And we want to get that through the organization as quickly as possible. So we’re creating a priority and typically when we create a plan, and then we execute the plan. So the knowledge of what’s planning, it’s like I say, it’s invaluable, but you know, as soon as the boots hit the floor, it’s out the window.

So really, you know, we had to kind of once it’s been flipped around, so, you know, if we’re trying to plan something for weeks in it Vance, well, then, you know, it gets less and less accurate, there’s more uncertainty. And obviously, as we get closer, we’ve got a bit more uncertainty about it. So what the particular flow basically does, instead of planning and execute, we first execute, and then we plan. So execution is based upon the priorities. And those priorities are determined by the work orders with the greatest threat of being late.

So we’re looking at how much works remaining and how much of a buffer there is. So that tells us like, it’s typically like with the scheduling system with finite scheduling, it’s all based around want dates. And so that would mean a work order that’s supposed to be shipped next week, would take priority over something and say, You got to ship in three weeks time or a month’s time. But that work orders supposed to ship in amongst time might be a greater risk of being late because then by the time you send it out for service, outside services, and it comes back and everything else, with this guy, the next week, well, you might be pretty much home and hosed.

Yeah, so by looking at a priority based upon its threat of being late, we’ve got an instantaneous priority. So we’re looking at, you know, how much buffer has been consumed, you know, material availability, other information to give us an instantaneous priority, so it’s at that point in time, then the other bit then comes about planning, so it gives us a crystal ball. So we can kind of simulate the future. And we can say that will look, based upon the current situation right now on what’s been happening, we can see that there is a problem is going to be a problem in these areas.

So we can then start to influence our future by for example, you know, what happens if we run some extra shifts, or, you know, we look at getting extra machines or we outsource things, we can then start to be proactive about our future. So that we’re ensuring we’re getting things out on time. And we and reacting to the situation. And the other good thing about it is you don’t have to replace your ERP system. So we can take the information from everyone’s ERP system, bring it into protective flow, and it’s a cloud based solution that delivers to the shop floor. And then everyone knows what their priorities are. And they follow that to get the work through. Yeah, no,


Damon Pistulka  32:28

I imagine when you’re prioritizing by what’s got the biggest risk in being late, you can reduce the amount of late things significantly at the end.


Trevor Calder  32:40

Yeah, that’s the same sort of principle was that the boards there was sort of looking at red tags and the group collaborating, who was protective, although it’s a bit more metric, based upon you know, what estimated times and buffer remaining, and if something happens, or what happens automatically by the system. So in some sense, that’s, that’s a bit easier. And we can just leave it mean, once we get to the right level, we can just believe it and follow it. Very cool. You only agreed priority, and we’re off.


Damon Pistulka  33:10

And away you go. Yeah. Yeah. So what do you have coming up? For the rest of this year? What’s exciting in your world? What what’s happening?


Trevor Calder  33:21

Yeah, um, I guess, particularly flow has really become, my core offering. And, yeah, it just, it comes very natural to me, because I’ve done a lot of ERP implementations and things over the years. And yeah, you know, they haven’t always delivered the value that we want from it, where I think we’ve taken the floor, it really is focused around delivering value to the organization, we’re eliminating the light problem.

So everyone, we are producing a work in progress. We’re increasing our throughput, our cash flow is improving. It’s really delivering a lot of value to businesses. So that’s becoming my core. My core product, my core focus, as I’ve got quite a few prospects on the go with that at the most and awesome, yeah, we’ve just signed on to customers. So we’re getting excited to do that. Yeah, so it’s pretty exciting.


Damon Pistulka  34:20

That’s awesome. And, and so if people want to get your book, I know we got a special offer today that you’re going to do, but is it available on Amazon? Is it available on Audible? Where can they get the book?


Trevor Calder  34:34

At tomorrow? You can get it from Amazon. Or you can also get it directly from the execution


Damon Pistulka  34:42

All right. Awesome. And for those of those listeners today, if you want to there’s a code to get a free pdf version of the book, I believe, and it’s pretty the faces of business with the first no spaces. The first letter in each word capitalized. They say that right? Yes, yep. Perfect. So that’s awesome. Because it’s going to be great. I’ve got mine downloaded, we’re going to be reading that. And we can take a look and learn more about this. What are some of the best ways to reach out to you, Trevor? And if somebody wants to talk to you about executing faster?


Trevor Calder  35:24

Sure. So you can hit me up on LinkedIn. That’s probably one of the easiest ways, or just head on over to the execution.


Damon Pistulka  35:33

Awesome. Awesome. Well, it’s been great having you here today, Trevor, I really enjoyed this because I know this kind of thing. I know you’re talking about manufacturing, and oh, there’s a lot of other applications and other companies as well. Because Lord knows there’s a lot of bottlenecks to solve and business. And let’s do it. Yeah, yeah. Well, thanks. Thanks so much.


Trevor Calder  36:00

Crazy. Yeah. Yeah, for sure.


Damon Pistulka  36:04

That’s for sure. Well, thanks a lot for being here today. Trevor, I want to thank all the listeners for joining us this afternoon and listening about the key. So accelerating execution. You know, we talked about the overall visibility, so you can really see where things are logged jamming. To help speed that up. He talked about theory of constraints and how that helps you kind of identify the constraints in it, and then some of the tools that you’ve used to do it. Anything else I’ve missed there, Trevor?


Trevor Calder  36:34

No, I think that’s it. All right.


Damon Pistulka  36:38

Thanks so much, everyone. We’ll be back again next week with another faces of business. See everyone these guys

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