is India an inefficient nation?

#1 Nov 15th, 2012, 20:23
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IS INDIA AN INEFFICIENT NATION?


"Everybody in India would be able to rattle off stories of late trains, buses which do not start on time, government officials who do not come to office on time, letters which are delivered late or not delivered at all, weather forecasts which are off the mark, roads which are not made properly and then not maintained, so on and so forth. We joke about this but Indian society also has a remarkable tolerance level for inefficiency. In recent times there has been lot of public outcry about corruption and rightly so, but have you heard anybody going on a hunger strike or satyagraha against inefficiency? The answer surely is no.

Yet, it is perhaps time to start a more serious discourse on how inefficiency hurts our attempts at developing India. We need a national discourse because among many other issues it is a phenomenon that has an important impact on poverty-related issues in the country and it is not just a matter of inconvenience to some foreign travellers."
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#2 Nov 15th, 2012, 21:05
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No, I don't think so .... however where most nations have too many chiefs and not enough Indians - India has too many Indians and not enough chiefs. They also have too many holidays - try and get a simple business transaction processes in real time during monsoon. Almost impossible.
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#3 Nov 15th, 2012, 21:26
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Is Japan efficient?

I can hear the resounding cries, yes! of course! mercilessly efficient!

This from one of my ex-colleagues, a Japanese man who would never have been an expat manager if he hadn't been pretty senior at home, and home was one of the world's biggest insurance companies: We say we never make mistakes, we like to think so, but the reason that there are few errors in a company like this, in Japan, is that everything get checked and rechecked and re-rechecked by so many different people

Now, if I remember rightly, efficiency is a mathematical relationship between the amount of energy used and the amount of work done. So, by that yardstick, that traditional (and probably no longer quite true in today's economy) Japanese company model is not efficient. But the product is excellent!
#4 Nov 15th, 2012, 22:05
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Originally Posted by Nick-H View Post Is Japan efficient?

I can hear the resounding cries, yes! of course! mercilessly efficient!

This from one of my ex-colleagues, a Japanese man who would never have been an expat manager if he hadn't been pretty senior at home, and home was one of the world's biggest insurance companies: We say we never make mistakes, we like to think so, but the reason that there are few errors in a company like this, in Japan, is that everything get checked and rechecked and re-rechecked by so many different people
(off topic)I can vouch for that Nick
No where else, in my not so long career, have I seen unit testing done with the entire production system dataset..... that means millions of records of data and many, many months of testing.

(It was not even a Japanese company - just the japanese subsidiary of an MNC. The Japanese subsidiary does not have the same project schedule as all other subsidiaries worldwide )
#5 Nov 17th, 2012, 21:13
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Originally Posted by Nick-H View Post So, by that yardstick, that traditional (and probably no longer quite true in today's economy) Japanese company model is not efficient. But the product is excellent!
That was my perception too. But it's no longer the case, especially in consumer electronics. Sony, poised to lose over $6 billion dollars this year, is a prime example of this. The engineering and quality control of their products have been clearly impacted by their slow but sure fall from grace.

An example: I purchased a VCR of theirs in the 1980s that still works well today - an incredible piece of electro-mechanical machinery. 6 Years ago, I purchased another VCR model of theirs and just before that hardware format began to disappear off consumer electronics shelves for good. It turned out to be a piece of plastic junk that disintegrated before my eyes within 30 days.

So, my advice is not to assume that a product is 'well made' simply by it's country of manufacture/origin or even by it's company name/model. Times are changing fast and what was a model of excellence yesterday - may be total crap today. Google and the plethora of product reviews are your due diligence oyster.
#6 Nov 17th, 2012, 21:33
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Yes, and Sony is a special case --- of a highly innovative company and a producer of very high quality goods, that totally lost its way. In general, though, the infallible, unfailing Japanese economy was wavering even twenty years ago, when I started working for a Japanese company, and the execs where beginning to have to rein in their previously-astonishingly-free expense accounts. Now I think several of the electronics manufacturers are in trouble. I suppose Korea happened.

Returning to India, India has production-line manufacturing plants. Among other things, cars are made here, and exported. I imagine that those plants must work as well as others in the world? Can Nissan tell their German customer that, sorry, he can't have his Micra this week: the paint-shop foreman's mother's brother-in-law's cousin's sister-in-law has died, and as he had to go to his native place for the arrangements, he won't be back until after the 16th-day function? I don't think so

But hey, even though I do not follow these things closely, I'm aware that all has been far from well at some Maruti and Hyundi plants.
#7 Nov 17th, 2012, 23:23
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I think India is highly inefficient at its top level systems and highly efficient when it comes down to people making a living. There is underlying chaos because the systems are incomplete, corrupt, open to exploitation and resistant to reform. But when it comes down to people on the ground trying to make a living, I find it highly efficient. India cannot function if its people are inefficient, and India can function a lot better if the systems are robust, corruption-free.

As paradoxical as it sounds, you can easily see for yourself if you venture into Old Delhi's narrow lanes. The "system" is clearly inefficient, yet it doesn't come crashing down, because people find ways around those inefficiencies.

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