Quality quiz (March 2015): A classic quiz from Professor Cleary—and February’s quiz winners!

Mike ClearyWinners of last month’s quiz and a copy of Quality Quiz Classics are Scot Garrison (Trinity Rail, OK); Mark Hammar (COM DEV, ON); and Bill Harwood (MDA QS ABL, NM). Congratulations! For this month’s quiz, and a chance to win a copy of Quality Quiz Classics, submit your response by March 27.

To celebrate the life and work of Professor Cleary, we are featuring a classic quiz from our archives.

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Take your pick: Available options for learning are expanded with technology

Barb ClearyDifferences in learning styles can be no more apparent than in responses to the challenge of assembling something ordered from a catalog that comes with “some assembly required” notice.

Some of us read the enclosed instructions, perhaps laboring over not-so-clear directions related to Part A and Slot B. Others dig right in, trying our own hand at putting the thing together. And others just give up and ask someone else to assemble that wet-dry vac that we ordered.

The same differences are true when it comes to learning about process control—both the system of process improvement itself and the tools that advance that system, including software programs. When it came to the theory, process, and tools of improvement, the traditional way of learning often involved travel, hotel stays, and full days of seminar training. Companies sent learners to conferences, where they participated in sessions selected for special interest or need.

All that has changed. While conferences and seminars continue to offer value in the learning process, technology has made it possible to expedite that learning, saving money and time. Webinars, for example, where participants in distant sites share their interactions with each other and with trained facilitators, allow a more highly customized approach to individual needs.

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Bytes and pieces: News you can use

Metrology conference: Registration is open for the 2015 Coordinate Metrology Systems Conference that will take place July 20-24 in Hollywood, FL.

Drones may be used to detect disease: Banana plantations in the Philippines are exploring the possibility of using unmanned drones for faster detection of disease.

Conference: The 2015 World Conference on Quality and Improvement sponsored by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) will take place May 4-6 in Nashville.

Learning workshops: The International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI) has announced one-day and half-day workshops in a variety of sessions on April 25-26.

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Bytes and pieces: News you can use

Patient safety: The apparent quiet of early morning (4 a.m. to 7 a.m.) is when hospitals may be least safe for patients.

Quality paradox: Managers may spend more time fighting fires than preventing them, Arun Hariharan points out.

Presentation reminder: Matt Savage, Support and Training Services Director for PQ Systems, will offer a session, “Spec Limits—What you don’t know can hurt you,” at the 2015 Lean & Six Sigma World Conference in Houston, March 11-12.

Tools for improvement: See this article on affinity diagrams by Barbara A. Cleary, Ph.D.

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