EMS SCV Meetings: SEP 1997 – JUN 1998


List of Meetings (details below)

– Jun 24, 1998: Reducing Project Schedules for Cross-Functional Teams – Manu Pillai & Wes Schropp
– May 27, 1998: Seven Habits of Successful People – Abel Valls
– Apr 29, 1998: Fast Time to Market (FTTM): Proven Methods that Deliver the Right Product on Time! – Barry Hills
– Mar 25, 1998: Create 21st Century Competitive Advantage by Working w/Multi-National Teams – K.C. Chan-Hurer
– Feb 25, 1998: Learn to Convey Your Vision to Others and Become a Better Manager – David Adamy
– Jan 28, 1998: Competitive Engineering: How to Beat Out Your Competition – David Frigstad
– Nov 19, 1997: The Role of Metrics In Change: Recent Benchmarks – John Carter
– Oct 29, 1997: Technical Management of a Large Project: GLOBALSTAR – Edward Hirshfield
– Sep 24, 1997: Venture Capital: Grabbing the Brass Ring of Success


Jun 24,1998 – Reducing Project Schedules for Cross-Functional Teams

Presented by:

–  Manu Pillai, Electrical Engineering Manager, Fujitsu PC Corporation
–  Wes Schropp, Director of Sales, Pal-Pilot International Corporation

A recent industry study suggests that, on average, adding one month to a product development schedule has the impact of tripling a company’s R&D expenditures related to the product. Add to this the extra costs and quality impact related to multiple prototype spins, and it is easy to see why Time To Market (TTM) has become an obsession with many companies. There are two major places that Time-to-market can be reduced. Fujitsu’s circuit designers have outsourced the physical layout and fabrication of their PCBs to PAL Pilot as a part of their Time to Market strategy.

The speakers for the June program of the Engineering Management Society meeting are Manu Pillai, Electrical Engineering Manager, Futjitsu PC Corporation and Wes Schropp, Director of Sales, Pal-Pilot International Corporation. Their presentation will discuss how they have been able to work together. This is a presentation by persons that have been there, in the real product development world, for getting successful products developed quickly. You will learn how two leading organizations approach this process.

Improving the Circuit Design Phase:
The first speaker will be Manu Pillai from Fujitsu PC speaking on reducing TTM in the Circuit Design Phase. He is currently responsible for product development, from whiteboard concept to final shipping of the product. His talk will focus on the hardware and firmware for Fujitsu PC’s advanced mobile computing solutions.

The presentation will include the tuning of design processes to optimize total product cost and speed to market, based on balancing internal and external resources. This process has resulted in reductions in overall product design times, number of board spins and associated costs, enabling more to be done with less. He will also discuss approaches to organizational and design infrastructure that enable diverse manufacturing options.

Improving the PCB Design/Prototype Phase:
The second speaker will be Wes Schropp from Pal-Pilot speaking on reducing TTM in PCB Design and Prototyping. Pal-Pilot International is an international manufacturing services company, providing services from PCB layout through contract manufacturing. He will focus on reducing TTM and product cost through concurrent manufacturability review during the PCB design stage.

His presentation will include integration of Contract Manufacturing, PCB Fabrication and customer design for manufacturability specs into the alpha stage of PCB Layout, thereby reducing prototype spins, costs, and Time to Market. He will discuss Industry case studies in support of the proposed processes.

These will include comparisons between “yesterday’s process” and a more pro-active approach incorporating concurrent manufacturability review during the alpha board design stage. The presentation will also include a discussion of the time, cost, and quality impacts of integrating manufacturability early into the alpha stages of board design.

— time-to-market


May 27,1998 – Seven Habits of Successful People

Presented by Abel Valls

Thousands of successful organizations worldwide have used Stephen R. Covey’s work with Principle-Centered Leadership as the basis for changes in their management philosophy and to improve their competitive position. Bill Gates uses the methods described in “Seven Habits” at Microsoft, and he has included Covey’s approach to planning and tracking accomplishments in the latest version of “Microsoft Office©”. In his phenomenal bestseller, Covey reveals the seven habits that all successful people share and describes how to make them a part of your everyday life.


The speaker for the May meeting of the Santa Clara Valley Engineering Management Society is Abel Valls, a Covey certified trainer with over 20 years experience in management and training at IBM. In recent years he has focused on the training in Covey’s “Seven Habits”. With his vibrant and dynamic approach, he has enlightened professionals in companies around the world.

The seven habits are based on a principle-centered philosophy for life from which are extracted the values of fairness, integrity, self-confidence, and respect for human dignity as internal characteristics that will make you more effective. Learn about the seven habits and the basics of how to improve your personal effectiveness with co-workers, friends, and family.

During the presentation, Mr. Valls will show us that we must first master ourselves before being effective with others, and that we must continually sharpen the saw through physical, mental, social, and spiritual activity. The ultimate promise and hope of this approach is that we can all develop a personal moral compass that we can follow under moments of crisis, and that others will follow us in pursuing right principles.

He will provide samples and examples of real world business applications where the Seven Habits have dramatically improved a company’s performance. During the talk, he will describe his unique personal experiences of success with the methods of the Covey program.

Mr. Valls was born in Argentina and moved to the United States working several years for IBM in his native country. He is an engineer, and was a Quality Assurance Manager for IBM. The Seven Habits played a significant role in his career change to join the Education team at IBM San Jose.

— management philosophy, competitive position


April 29,1998 – Fast Time to Market (FTTM): Proven Methods that Deliver the Right Product on Time!

Presented by Barry Hills

Here is a real-life product development story that breaks out the essential program management methods required to ship your software and hardware systems on time. It discusses establishing the Business Imperatives and setting a Mindset for Speed which are critical starting points for FTTM implementation. Successful FTTM programs are driven by a team of people with a common mindset for sustained improvement who are supported by a leadership willing to provision them and delegate beyond their comfort zone. Application of FTTM best practices provides a way for today’s software and hardware designers to differentiate themselves from the “rest of the pack”, increase their value to corporate America, and improve their odds of survival in a rapidly changing industry.

Case History:
Tandem delivered its first CLX/R server to the field 45 days earlier than the initial bottoms up schedule, a mere 201 days from when the executive decision was made to start the program. Not only was CLX/R shipped early, it was shipped with high quality and with more function than originally planned for First Customer Ship.

Methodology/Best Practices:
FTTM Internal Factors: Rigorous understanding of the Plan, Continuous effort to pull in the schedule, Managing slack, Doing things right the first time, Managing change, Positive team dynamics, Knowing when a decision is made.
FTTM Environmental Factors: Constraining program and product scope, Visible executive support, Willingness to spend money to save a day.
Mindset for Speed: Ability to accelerate, Importance of a single day, Agreement to accelerate, Pulling in the schedule, Recognizing success, Propagating methodology to others.

Barry L. Hills is Vice President, NT Systems Development Tandem Computers, Inc. Under his leadership the NT group is chartered to become the leading supplier of scaleable and reliable Windows NT clusters. His breadth of experience and accomplishments qualify him as a real practitioner of the art of program management and process improvements. Previous assignments have included: Director of Software Engineering Manager of Quality for Systems Development and Program Manager for the K2000 and CLX/R server systems. In these capacities Mr. Hills has established ISO 9000 certification for hardware delivered systems on time with high quality and provided improvement programs for software engineering.

— product development, ability to accelerate, recognizing success


Mar 25,1998 – Create a 21st Century Competitive Advantage by Working Successfully with Multi-National Teams

Presented by K.C. Chan-Hurer

Do you work with engineers, scientists or managers who are from India, China, France, or Chile, or who were born in other countries from around the world? Are you ever puzzled by their responses to your requests or questions?

Would you like to work more effectively with your project team members from other countries whether you are based in Silicon Valley, USA or Bangalore, India or Grenoble, France? Learn some proven strategies to help you communicate, interact, and manage more effectively your multi-national teams. These strategies will help you manage and complete projects more productively and enjoyably!

Our speaker this month is K.C. Chan-Hurer, a true “global citizen.” She has 15 years of experience in marketing, management and communications. Her Fortune 500 clients range from Sun Microsystems to Procter & Gamble. Ms. Chan-Herur has worked, lived and studied in Asia, Europe, North, and South America. She appears frequently in the media as an expert in business globalization. These include The Los Angeles Times, Working Woman and CNBC television. Her internationally recognized book, “Communicating with Customers Around the World” has received rave reviews.

Ms. Chan-Hurer, principal of San Francisco-based Geneva Consulting Group, earned her MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and a BS in Civil Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley. She is an adjunct faculty member at the University of San Francisco and has taught at the University of California, Berkeley Worldwide Diploma program.

— more effective multi-national communication


Feb 25,1998 – Learn to Convey Your Vision to Others and Become a Better Manager

Presented by David Adamy

One of the most important aspects of any manager’s job is selling ideas…
to clients, to superiors, to employees, and to colleagues. By its very nature, management involves blending the efforts of more than one person toward the success of a single endeavor. A successful effort requires the team to share the same vision of the conduct, outcome, and subsequent benefits of their collective effort. The effective manager creates that vision and sells it to every member of the team. The effective manager is selling all day, every day – primarily selling his or her ideas.

Whether your organization designs processes, manufactures computer chips, provides expert services, administers policy, or sells shoes – its success is fully dependant upon the ability of you, the manager of (or in) that organization, to sell your ideas. That is the way you wrest the required resources from your upper management – by allowing those managers to understand the benefits of giving your organization what it needs. That is the way you create the necessary enthusiasm and team bonding to enhance the performance of the team you lead. That is the way you convert customers (or clients) into teammates – eager to help your team satisfy the customer’s needs.

During this program, our guest speaker will discuss the techniques he has used in selling his ideas in all of the above applications. Highlights are:

  • Seeing the problem from the customer’s point of view,
  • Creating perceived value at the point of sale,
  • The myth of the better mouse trap,
  • Special challenges in technical selling.


Dave Adamy has been an engineering manager in various capacities for the last 30 years-managing large and small programs, managing large and small groups (all made up of people smarter than he), and for the last fifteen years as president of his own company (Adamy Engineering). The company performs technical and management studies, provides consulting services, writes proposals (for clients), and presents technical courses all over the world.

Dave is a highly experienced communicator who presents several talks every year and has published about 100 articles, including a monthly technical tutorial series in an industry magazine. He has five books in print, two of which are focused to the needs of technical managers. These two will be available to meeting attendees at a significant discount.

— selling ideas, shared effort, creating enthusiasm, team binding


Jan 28,1998 – Competitive Engineering: How to Beat Out Your Competition

Presented by David Frigstad, Chairman of Frost & Sullivan

This month David Frigstad, Chairman of Frost & Sullivan, one of the foremost market research and consulting firms in the world, will present his approach to a proven system to beat out your competitors in the marketplace. The process is called, Competitive Engineering. During his presentation, he will describe this accomplished system designed to drive strategy and action to improve your company’s market position.

Mr. Frigstad has sucessfully worked with business clients worldwide solving their professional challenges and exploiting new opportunities through the application of his techniques. He lectures throughout the world on how companies can improve their market position though measurement based management and marketing systems. He is the author of several best selling consulting books including, Market Engineering, Competitive Engineering, Customer Engineering and Industrial Market Research and Forecasting. He will offer several of these books for purchase at a 50% discount at our meeting.

One of the key factors in today’s typical high technology companies is that the competitive intelligence function has little impact on the bottom line. The critical areas of failure are covered with practical action plans on how to avoid these common pitfalls. The presentation focuses on the tremendous benefits that his process brings to companies that are successfully able to integrate it into their management style.

The Competitive Engineering process is a measurement based system focused on solving the market challenges that companies face. The system integrates competitive challenges, competitive research, strategy, implementation and monitoring into a practical and useful methodology which can benefit every department in a company.

To demonstrate the effectiveness of his system, he will describe actual case histories on how companies have won in the market place through the successful integration of the elements of this approach.

Mr. Frigstad holds a Bachelor of Science degree in MIS. He received his Master’s degree in Japanese Business Administration from the Japan American Institute of Management Science in association with Sophia University, Tokyo, Japan. He also holds a Master’s in Business Administration in International Marketing from Indiana University.

— market challenges, research, strategy, monitoring


Nov 19,1997 – The Role of Metrics In Change: Recent Benchmarks

Presented by John Carter

Benchmarking, measuring performance, and competing against your own and your competitors’ best efforts are the hallmarks of companies striving to improve and stay ahead. We recently conducted several studies of performance measures and of how companies use and rate those measures. The data show that while most companies are indeed managing with the use of performance measures at some level, the vast majority are focused on short term indicators of product and project success. In the minority are those companies that not only manage metrics that reflect long term indices of project success, but also normalize these metrics based on program complexity. Moreover, the best don’t stop here. They also employ measures of long-term achievement across generations of products. John’s talk addresses some of those measures which are most closely correlated with long term success. Actively managing across this span of measures provides managers with the opportunity to increase dramatically the effectiveness of their operations.

John Carter is the founder of Product Development Consulting, Inc., (PDC) a firm dedicated to assisting companies achieve excellence in rapid product development. Uniquely combining metrics and benchmarking data to communicate worldwide best practices, Mr. Carter has developed a comprehensive framework for product development process improvement. He is an advisor to top strategy consulting firms on the new product process and is an authority on leading Japanese development practices, the use of metrics, and product definition criteria.
John has served as an advisor to the International Association of Product Development, the Gordon Institute, and the Management Roundtable. He is a member of the core faculty at Case Western’s Executive program and is co-founder of the Berkeley Software Forum (BSF).

— performance, competitors, hallmarks, indices of project success


Oct 29,1997 – Technical Management of a Large Project: GLOBALSTAR

Presented by Edward Hirshfield

Globalstar’s basic design tenet, from the beginning, has been to provide an extension to existing cellular telephone service, which is ubiquitous, universal and affordable. This design objective was achieved via the employment of a rational development methodology that utilizes top-down functional decomposition. The management of this methodology and the Globalstar design will be the subject of this months meeting.

Globalstar is slated to begin service in over 110 countries in the very near future. The system will interconnect via the public Switched Network to virtually every standard and wireless telephone in the world. This required the most simple, efficient system be designed that could be conceived and that technology would permit. The design concept began with a well thought out concept of the service desired tempered by a strong business plan and regulatory constraints. Globalstar is a system in which many countries are participating, both in design and manufacture. It has attracted partners who are already major service providers throughout the world, due in a large part to the fact the this system augments existing systems so it does not compete with the substantial existing cellular investments.

The Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the Engineering Management Society is privileged to host an executive briefing by Mr. Edward Hirshfield, Vice President of Development and Production of Globalstar on Wednesday, October 29.

He has over 35 years of experience in the design and development of communication systems. Before joining Globalstar he was the manager of Communication Sciences at Space Systems/Loral where he was responsible for the companies Advanced Communication IRandD. In addition to extensive background in satellite systems, he has many years of experience in satellites, ground stations and other communications systems at GTE, Communications Electronics Corporation (now Watkins-Johnson) and Vitro Corporation serving as system architect, designer and program manager. He has been issued over six patents with four pending. He has also authored numerous technical and professional papers.

— rational development methodology, top-down functional decomposition


Sep 24,1997 – Venture Capital: Grabbing the Brass Ring of Success

Presented by (a leading Venture Capital firm that focuses on high technology)

As the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in the Silicon Valley, Few topics intrigue Bay Area technologists, managers, and executives more than Venture Capital. To kick off the new year, the IEEE Engineering Management Society (EMS) will host it’s annual Venture Capital program on Wednesday, September 24th at Amhdal Computer in Santa Clara.

Our speaker will be from a leading Venture Capital firm that focuses on high technology.

Planned topics include the process of obtaining capital and what it takes to reach IPO as well as what the “hot” and “not so hot” markets are. One of the hallmarks of the EMS is it’s highly interactive program format. This event gives a rare opportunity for the attendees to discuss both issues and solutions with a key executive in the industry and to get a glimpse into their personal perspective.

(speaker bio TBD)

— IPO, entrepreneurship