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The future of Maintenance – Part 2 – How to see it?

In maintenance we practice visualization often when planning. We draw a whole process and draft a huge set of preparations out of our expectation for the end result. To draw the maintenance future we need to draw what we dream about the end result then we plan the Agile steps to reach there. Let’s follow on.

Whatever we can imagine will unfold into our future reality within sometime. Even if we can imagine only doing the same exact things forever, the things change. The tools change. The equipment we know since 20 years are 20 years older now. Team members whom we work with since 20 years are 20 years wiser now. Maybe your car is the same but the cars around you in the street changed. Your communication with others had evolved in the last 20 years in a way that has no one expected 20 years ago.

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The big changes or the leaps in the industry in the last 2 centuries took 10s of years to spread worldwide. Nowadays the technology behind the scenes are exponentially growing and driving the world nuts with disruptions to old patterns.

Maintenance is of no exception. It will follow sooner or later. But this will be based on our capacity to imagine the maintenance in the future.

Not everything is growing with the same pace but all in the same future direction

Our ideas take the shape of our environment. Well, not only. Our bodies too. They are shaped through our daily activities, our food, our mood and our expectations for ourselves. So what we perceive for ourselves will come true. It is always the same. What we perceive is what we shall receive. Your query just receives your real intention behind it. If you don’t have one? Your previous perceptions will come true. If never have one? The other party’s perception of intentions will prevail. If none of you have intentions of perceptions? The community perceptions and believes will come true and so on.

Think about the water flow. It is always from up to down and in same direction. The exception is when you have a whirlpool. The water rotates and heads down. Which is not the best place to stay. Also, water stops flowing when there is no slope. But in this case either it dries with time or algae grows.

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In case you want to push water up or backward you need some external power to pump it. Same if you are paddling. You need a huge effort to stay in position or to proceed against the flow.

Why would we try to hold on to our current position?

Simply because there were some believes entrenched in our minds that what ever was before is better than whatever is coming. You can see this in the huge efforts to maintain the indigenous groups or the heritage buildings. Or even the childhood traditions. Try to forcefully extinct the old is also wrong but if it slips away and new traditions come in place that’s not bad under one condition.

We have our own beliefs in what’s good for us in the core, what serves our highest mission and highest good. Without a real believe in what we are trying to hold on too, we shall be drifted to where we resist to go. We want be happy in either cases. So, it is not the matter of letting go or holding on to. It is the matter of seeking the inspiration of what is good for us. Then we follow the inspiration.

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Instead of resisting the flow we can simply drift our selves to where we want to be. What we want to be stems from what we think it is better to be. Why we think it is better to be here or there has one of two answers. Either we want to imitate an external image. Or, we had an immagination of what shall work for us better. We don’t need to stay in the wanting stage for long. We imagine, desire, want and start an action. Every subtle action in the direction to where we want to reach is a step in the right direction. So instead of paddling against the flow we can simply step aside or steer our route but while flowing forward. Or simply step out of the water flow if you can.

So where maintenance is heading in the future?

It is heading where life is going. Where life is going? That’s what we need to have a look upon.

Where is life going to?

Life pace is speeding up. New {{good}}things are flourishing everyday. Why we make good as a variable? Because it depends on your view of what is coming next. Traditionally we were brought up hearing the words: old is gold. And, usually we perceive the old traditions, skills and morals as the best. Yes, it might had good results but for those days. What suited the old days is not any more fitting for our time.

Honestly we can’t say that everything new is better or more resonating with us than anything inherited from the oldies for three main reasons.

Firstly, as individuals we are different so what suits one of us may not suit the next one. Some prefers remote work. Others hate it. Some of those who hated it loved it after forcefully testing it in the quarantine. And other hate it more. Second reason why the new things filling up our life might have a dark side is the fast pace of everything. This deprives us from the focus and the time to digest and even enjoy the new. Because another newer thing quickly pops up.

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Thirdly comes the volatility of the new things. Most of the new tools we have are soft ones. We access them via the ether. Here comes two parties one that says we are guaranteeing the ever lasting of those tools via Starlink like internet and distributed protected servers. The other party keeps saying that the ether carrying all these good stuff to us is changing and one day we will return isolated without communications through the ether either gradually or suddenly. After relying and building our new life around those soft tools they will all be gone, how we can prefer them to the old good days of the physical hardwired communications.

What is Maintenance heading to?

Industrial Maintenance is part of the physical industrial ecology. That’s a big mass. Big mass has big inertia. So it is difficult to move it from rest to run but once it is running it is unstoppable. So any trial to change its lane needs to be consciously threaded into the body of this giant. Otherwise, either it will crash the tools that is trying to change its direction or the whole big mass will end up crashing into the unknown. We have some of the examples that end up crashing into the unknown and vanishing with time just because the wheel was steered wrongly at one moment in time.

So to detour the maintenance to a new destination we need to softly introduce the new aspects of the fast pace digitalized future in the maintenance routines. But again it all depends on visualizing it, see it , imagining it. If you can’t see it then you won’t receive it. If you don’t believe in it, then you won’t put the effort to make it happen.

But how we can see the future that is not here yet?

Well, that no different from planning. Maybe you are planning something you now. So, you have a clear end result for you but you do not see the steps. Then you start planning by drafting the steps between here and there. Then you iterate over your steps and tune it and harmonize interaction between different teams and so on. In reality, while you are drafting it, you are imagining it and intending it to move as you planned it. Drawing the future of maintenance is no different. But it has one step more. We need to draw the end result then we follow it by adding the steps. Then iterating over both the end image and the steps. Well this looks like what is nowadays called Agile. Read a complete Maintenance Agile Manifesto here: The 8 Steps to create an Agile Maintenance – Part 9

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In Agile, you have the outlines of the end product and shadows of the steps. Then you start connecting the dots and the next dot appears after or within working on this one. This might be disrupting a previous step that we need to redo it again but that’s accepted because we started delivering quickly and this saved us a lot of time. We shall invest part of this savings in revisiting what is already done but not fitting with the just unfolded next few steps.

In Conclusion,

In maintenance we practice visualization often when planning. We draw a whole process and draft a huge set of preparations out of our expectation for the end result. To draw the maintenance future we need to draw what we dream about the end result then we plan the Agile steps to reach there. Let’s follow on shortly after.

If you feel you need help with any of these ideas we discussed, drop us a line for initial investigation in the form by Clicking here or request Management Consultancy or Coaching Services From our Store

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By Rezika

I intend to create a better-managed value adding working environment.
Projects and Maintenance Manager with broad experience in industrial plants. Managed Projects and applied different maintenance strategies and improvements tasks in different industrial plants: steel, cement, and food industries.

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