Maruti Prasanna, a consultant with Mckinsey and Company, conducted a fun, high-energy session on Operations Management with 14 students from The Mott Hall School. Through a series of sandwich making activities, brainstorming and videos, students learned that you can make changes in processes to get much higher productivity.
Operations Management is a way to make processes go faster, smoother, safer, and more cheaply. In this hands-on and high-energy session, students made ten toasted, cheese and cucumber filled and individually wrapped sandwiches! They were allowed to set up their operations in whichever way they wanted.
Maruti then asked them to list all the challenges they faced during their operations. He showed them videos that helped them understand how racing car teams dramatically reduced the amount of time they took to change tires. They also looked at how the oh-so familiar Subway counter is laid out. Inspired by these ideas, students decided to make changes to their operations. They were given a second chance to make ten sandwiches – but before that they had to make a plan. When they finished making their next batch, they were amazed and almost shocked by how much less time they took the second time.
Maruti then took them through the ideas of debottlenecking, assembly line layouts and division of labor and showed them “How it’s made” videos to illustrate these principles.
This session was an eye-opener for many students. They appreciated how every sector from manufacturing to banking to retail to hospitals can be impacted by Operations Management. It was especially insightful for some of the girls who realized how naturally suited they were for careers like these.