Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Production Facilities

In my management class this morning, we were talking about motivation and what drives people to do what they do. The professor went around and asked each person to rate on a scale of 1-10 how important money was to them and then say what motivates them.

Everyone in our class agreed that if money is your #1 motivating factor, you don't belong in this industry. There's just not a lot of money to be made, especially without lots and lots of hard work. Most of us were driven by passion, and one guy said he wanted to be famous (and that he wanted a walk-on role on "Deadliest Catch" the TV show).

My motivating factor was feedback. I love to share what I do with the people around me. I enjoy the verbal and visual feedback from their voices and faces! It makes me happy. I also am motivated to put out a consistent product, like a machine, but smarter and better. Ours is a trade that will hopefully never be taken over by machines. Yes, there is mass-production of processed food, but would you really go out to eat if you knew there was a machine in the kitchen, grilling your steak (to perfection) and making your creme brulee? It would absolutely boggle my mind to see that happen.

We also watched a movie in class about McDonald's starting a new location in Moscow. This took 14 years and was opened in 1990 and was a huge success. I was blown away by the size of the facility - it could seat 700 people! They served tens of thousands of people on the first day. Since it was in Russia and it's McDonald's, they also had to build their own processing facility. The film showed some of the production going on of hamburger patties and buns and it got me to remember just how much I LOVE watching production happen!

My parents took us to an almond factory once, and even though I hated almonds and we behaved badly and had to leave early (sorry Mom), I remember totally enjoying peeking through the windows at what was happening down in the factory.

Then I remembered my FAVORITE episode from Mister Roger's Neighborhood. He took us (yes, it felt like we went to the factory) to see how Crayola Crayons were made! I remember he said something about how the crayons all look like they go on different rides throughout the process. I looked up the video on the PBS website and he even stuck a big word in there - "collate". Wow!

Here's the same Crayola video:

After watching it and reliving my childhood awe, I had a lot of questions come up. Did the people really smile all day while working, knowing that kids were going to have so much fun using their crayons? Did you get to pick which color you worked with? Did you ever get to switch? Did the colors affect your moods?

Mom: Kids, be nice to Dad today. He had to work the Black Line again.


Son: Wow, must've been a Yellow Line day, huh Dad? You look so happy!
And how did they handle the crayons without breaking them? Did their kids get free crayons for life? Did their hands smell funny at the end of the day? Did the whole factory smell like wax? Was that bad? Did the workers ever think they were going to make crayons for a living?!

This just gave me an idea! I should go! I really just did this - went to the Crayola website and found that their factory is in Easton, Pennsylvania, only 2 1/2 hours away from me. Roadtrip? Maybe after graduation . . .

1 comment:

Patti MacLeith said...

No apologies necessary about the Almond factory--makes for a funny story. And, I'm down for the Crayola factory on the way back to California!

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