Tuesday, 21 February 2012

The Logistics of Baby Feeding

Keshie Loves Carrot
(no children or adults were hurt in
 the making of this picture)
It is now time that Keshet my youngest daughter took the stage in Surely More Interesting Than Cargo Manifests.  This seems a little harsh as it is actually Millie my oldest daughters birthday today but as I was feeding Keshet breakfast I realised that there is a lot in common between distribution and fleet management and trying to get fruit puree into a 7 month old.

Keshet, or Keshie as we call her, is a like a demanding site; very eager to get hold of the product.  She is not to fussed how it gets there or how much wastage occurs in the delivery.  Such concerns are the remit of the distribution manager (aka Daddy).

Daddy has a fleet of 2 - 3 spoons.  These are not general spoons used elsewhere in the cutlery draw fleet, these are special soft tipped spoons suitable for the receiving site.  Now those of you who are not parents are thinking that a fleet of 2 - 3 spoons is more than enough for a simple delivery schedule.  Those of you who are parents have already started to giggle or sweat uncontrollably.

You see the soft tipped delivery vehicle in question is prone to impromptu unserviceability.  Quite often the receiving site is not ready for the delivery and in a bout of aggressive yard marshalling (at least that's what I think she is doing) the soft tipped delivery vehicle is knocked to the floor and acquires dust and other foreign objects.  At other times the receiving site management do not respect the delivery schedule and try to take matters into their own hands retaining the use of the soft tipped delivery vehicle.  No amount of promulgating expected delivery times or verbal encouragement seems to resolve this problem.  Quite often Daddy argues that his Tachograph has expired and it is time for a new driver.......thanks Mummy!  

Throughout my career it has become necessary on occasion to work on fleet establishments, redundancy is a difficult thing to build in because anyone who has worked in transport will tell you that if there is a vehicle spare someone will fill it....particularly a passenger vehicle..... vehicles cost money even if they are sat still and the US Military is the only organisation I have worked with that have the ability to carry larger numbers of redundant vehicles.  Perhaps needless to say it is important to factor in scheduled maintenance so that your fleet is kept  working optimally.  Keshie's spoon antics aren't so far from the behaviour of receiving sites and transport users.  Envisioning the entire team on the transport and fleet management seems like overkill as you are doing it but in reality the more people who understand what you are trying to achieve the more likely you are to achieve your goals.  Keshie has only part of the vision she only sees the current delivery not the ongoing process, but as she becomes more aware of our aims she does less impromptu yard marshalling and lets us get on with it.

Anyway, I have a report to finish today.  Later this week we are expecting to blog on telling your boss he/she is talking ROT and making them feel good about it.....well goodish.

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