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The Ice Cream Maker: An Inspiring Tale About Making Quality The Key Ingredient in Everything You Do by [Chowdhury, Subir]
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The Ice Cream Maker: An Inspiring Tale About Making Quality The Key Ingredient in Everything You Do Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Pete, hero of this rapturous business novella, manages an ice cream factory where "the low hum of mediocrity filled the air...like an offensive odor." Desperate to boost margins, Pete makes a sales call to the local Natural Foods grocery store, where he is amazed by "how clean and fresh, warm and welcoming the store was," by the cheerfulness of the employees, and by charismatic store manager Mike, who expounds legendary Natural Foods founder Glen Goodwill's philosophy of putting quality before profit. "Mike...I need help," Pete sobs, in the throes of a conversion experience, "tell me what I can do to make quality a part of our culture." He learns to empower his workers, listen to customers and obsessively measure every detail of production processes with an eye to continuous improvement. Soon lumpy texture and leaky cartons are a thing of the past, profits soar, Pete is promoted to company president and he even applies Mike's teachings to enhance the quality of his marriage and parenting. Chowdhury, author of The Power of Six Sigma, extends Total Quality Management from a managerial program into a journey toward spiritual redemption. He conveys its principles through a smattering of process-engineering argot ("we reduced tolerance of variables on our mix-ins to .1 grams and the depth of each tub to two millimeters"), golf and football parables, and cultic incantations like "you have tilled the soil, to prepare it for the seed of quality." Although less than convincing as a motivational tract, this book provides a readable, if sketchy, introduction to TQM precepts.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

TAKING QUALITY TO THE NEXT LEVEL



“Great book! The Ice Cream Maker should be mandatory reading for anyone entering the workforce.”

–Steve Walukas, Vice President, Corporate Quality, DaimlerChrysler Corporation


“This business gem is short in length, but boundless in the depth of its insight and wisdom. If there is only one book and one author I could recommend in the world of quality, it would be The Ice Cream Maker and Subir Chowdhury.”

–Marshall Goldsmith, founding partner of Marshall Goldsmith Partners, and author of The Leader of the Future


“Fabulous! The Ice Cream Maker offers a great illustration of the amazing results that can be achieved by engaging your entire workforce in the efforts to improve quality.” 

– Lee A. Mundy, Executive Director, Strategic Quality Initiative, General Motors Corporation 

"In 115 jargon-free pages, [Chowdhury] boils down most of the wisdom of
modern management theory and practice that is equally relevant to chief
executive and front-line clerk."

---- THE WASHINGTON POST (10-9-2005)

"The Ice Cream Maker becoming a kind of Detroit Bible, at once raising
our expectations and our self-confidence. That's bold self-promotion --
chutzpah -- a quality that our battered region could use right now."

---THE DETROIT NEWS (11/13/2005)

"Subir Chowdhury's mission is to make quality part of America's
corporate DNA. The Ice Cream Maker is a great step on the path to this
end."

--- KEN BLANCHARD, coauthor of The One Minute Manager




From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

  • File Size: 741 KB
  • Print Length: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Business; 1st edition (October 4, 2005)
  • Publication Date: October 4, 2005
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FCKFA8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #139,565 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I'm sure that this book will get some very enthusiastic reviews (which I've already seen), as well as some reviews saying, essentially, "Where's the beef?" And, in the end, both are going to be right.

This book is 100 pages, double-spaced, and about the size of my outstretched hand. Obviously, it can't be a definitive textbook on how to make dramatic changes in the workplace. What it does (quite successfully in my opinion) is to open one's eyes, and inspire the reader to see where change is needed. Basically, it advocates the opinion that many US companies have focused on their own "bottom line", or on "making a splash", without actually going to the consumer, finding what their very BASIC needs are, and focusing on meeting the need. (A prime example from the book - a dealership, for the first time, gathered disgruntled former customers in a focus group. They asked the customers about all of the "perks" they offered - pickup/dropoff service, fancy keychains, donuts/coffee... and the customers all liked the changes. In exasperation, the owners asked why they didn't return -- and finally heard that they had brought their car to the dealership several times, and the car wasn't fixed.)

Of course, this book can't answer every question. For example, the primary "story" focuses on an ice cream company who needs to get their product into a "Natural Foods" chain - If the "target" was getting into Wal-Mart, would the definition of "quality" change? What do you do with employees who don't "catch the spirit" in light of employment law/unemployment insurance? However, it is a great inspirational piece - and I look forward to reading other books in order to answer those remaining questions.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a story about a guy who doesn't really exist -- but he might be you. He's worried about his job. He thinks he understands why people buy from some companies and not from others. He's wrong.

Ice cream isn't really essential to the story. It's really about finding out what your customers want and then making sure you give it to them consistently so that they're never disappointed. But as metaphorical products go, ice cream is a lot more fun at a business meeting than throwing fish around or wondering where your cheese has gone.

While the author's message could have been put more simply without a tale about ice cream, the message still shines through. Just having the book on your shelf can remind you that every customer matters and every unit shipped matters. And it's even a pretty fast read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Every person needs to read this. It changes your whole way of thinking. Too many people try to just "get by" and settle. To do the bare minimum to pass. Well this book teaches you, through many stories, that life shouldn't be that way. It's all about passion. What's yours?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I still fall for these "quickies". Many years ago I'd read "The Goal", "The one minute manager" and "Raving Fans", which I consider the best of this genre. If I read this before them perhaps I'd give it a 5 star.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I LOVED THIS BOOK! It was so inspiring and motivating. It really made me see business in a different light. I am a social work major and we read it in a class. When I first was told I had to read this book I was puzzled because it was about business. The book really helped me look at leadership in a different way as well as just treating others in general. I would say this is a good read for anyone despite their major.
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Format: Hardcover
Subir Chowdhury has done it again! This book will become a classic like "Fish!", "Who Moved My Cheese" and "The One Minute Manager". The timeless lessons in this book will take your quality to a new level by adopting the simple but powerful concept of LEO - Listen, Enrich and Optimize and these lessons can be applied to self, small business, large corporations, schools and even government. Quality truly is everyone's business.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I remember reading this in college and it was great and such a quick read. I couldn't put it down when I came across it again I knew I had o add it to my digital library. Highly recommended to Engineers/Managers/Business Development
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An excellent parable that takes a boring concept like quality assurance and brings it to life. It shows what happens when every voice in an organization is heard and everyone is looking towards the same outcome.
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