The first ting people see when they visit KI's Wisconsin USA headquarters is a twenty foot high electronic sign. The sign proudly displays daily on time shipping and packing performance—maintained at 98%—and a daily cost-of-quality so low it stuns competitors.
The training has been so successful that all 1800 KI employees are scheduled to complete the program in 1994.KI is the seventh-largest furniture manufacturer in the U.S. The company continues to grow at much better than the industry average and plans to hit $350 million in sales next year. How does KI sustain outstanding performance? Persona's PRIDE training is a big part of the answer.
“As of third quarter 1993, we have reduced our year-to-date cost of quality by almost $770,000 compared to the same point last year.”
When KI was looking for a way to teach employees to focus on the customer and become self-directed, PRIDE met the criteria. The 5-session program helps front-line teams and their leaders build quality customer relationships. It uses role plays, games and exercises to teach participants self-directed techniques. PRIDE also includes a Team Development Profile that participants use to assess and guide their performance during and after training.
General Manager Daniel Cassity explains, "PRIDE is the driving force in building our customer-focused corporate culture. It's all common sense—people want to do a good job and want to know how well they're doing it. PRIDE has given us a common language because it's based on human behavior." Don Ropson, supervisor at the Green Bay facility, has seen a marked improvement in internal and external customer service. "There's almost nothing we won't do to satisfy the customer," he says. "Employees are a lot smarter than managers as far as how to get the work done, and PRIDE gives them the tools they need to be successful."
PRIDE continues to be a key factor in KI's outstanding performance. The company has reduced cost-of-quality from 2.20% of sales in 1991 to approximately 1.89% in 1993. Cassity calls 1.89% "an astonishing figure." He further explains, "As of third quarter 1993, we have reduced our year-to-date cost of quality by almost $770,000 compared to the same point last year."
PRIDE has become an integral part of KI's culture. In fact, the last thing employees see each day is a sign saying "Take Pride Home with You." At KI, it's obvious that everyone is getting the message.