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Toward the end of the three- or four-day class, several of the attendees stopped me to ask a question. During the ensuing discussion, they asked, "Okay, you're teaching us what it's like in Mike's World. But how do you do this in the real world?" So now when I'm teaching and giving speeches, I remind the class to stop me if I get too far into Mike's World — or maintenance utopia — and let me explain the real-world comparison.
In short, Mike's World is what managers should strive to be by constantly trying to improve the maintenance process.
Let's discuss what Mike's World looks like. Then I'll present the five things you need to accomplish as you move toward it down the maintenance improvement path. In Mike's World:
Top management and customers love the maintenance organization and its employees.
Top management thinks maintenance is the most important component of the entire organization.
You have a few more maintenance employees than you need.
Your maintenance technicians are paid more than other local technicians
Your technicians are the most talented in the area, and everyone wants to hire your employees
Your computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is perfect, and you love it.
Your direct customers love to write detailed and complete work requests.
Your equipment and asset work histories are always up to date.
You plan and schedule 80-90 percent of all technicians' maintenance work.
Your preventive maintenance program is great, it covers all equipment, and inspections are never late.
You have detailed performance measures set up to monitor all aspects of the maintenance process.
You perform process and customer audits regularly.
By now, many of you are thinking I need some mental evaluation because Mike's World is completely different than the maintenance world you know. Trust me, it does exist in many organizations, and it is fun to work in that type of culture.
Before I get to the five steps, let me remind you of an old saying that has been written many different ways: "Don't let perfection stand in the way of progress." In other words, start where you are, use what you have, and do what you can. The bottom line is do something. Wait for the stars in your department to align with Mike's World, and you'll never get anywhere.
5 Steps to Achieving Maintenance Operations Utopia