As Workers Turn Into Risk Takers...One Plant Really Turns On The Steam

Andrzej Blikle had a problem. He wanted to introduce Western quality-control concepts to his baked-goods plant in a Warsaw suburb. But the best of the "motivational" slogans sounded too much like discredited socialist mantras. Last year, he got the opening he needed when his hot-selling poppy-seed cakes kept crumbling when cut. He gathered together 20 bakers and sales clerks for weekly troubleshooting meetings. It took two months, but the mystery was solved: The first shift was grinding its poppy seeds finer than the second shift. Grinding was standardized, and voila--firm cakes.

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