September 13th, 2011 §
Ok, so I really sound like I am China bashing but no. I want people to know what it is really like living here. And besides, I’m sure that my parents get a kick out of it anyway.
So I posted earlier today about a certain level of competence. A level of smartness to get things done. I just was reminded of this a few minutes ago.
Case in point: I had three widgets that needed to have a number stamped on them. So, I told the boss of the number stamping people to get to it. He himmed and hawwed because he was off in 15 minutes. Jesus H. Christ, really. He tried to get me to let him do it tomorrow but I needed it done tonight. He reluctantly started moving.
He grabbed the three widgets and went to the number machine. He tested it on a different widget. Good. But what he failed to realize is that the actual widget that I needed the numbers on was a different material, so his test was moot. He knows this. He has to. He deals with this BS everyday. But why he didn’t grab a test widget with the same material, I probably will never know.
Ok fine. He starts going at it and the first one is ok. The second one, well, he forgets to change the number from a “1″ to a “2.” Then he changes it and stamps it again. So.. now there is a 2 ontop of a 1. Awesome. If that crap didn’t happen all the time I might of not even wrote this post. But really this type of mistake happens so often that it can not be something that is just forgotten. How can you forget something you do or are involved with everyday.
The third was bunk. Total rubbish. The machine melted the widget and didn’t leave a number. “Oh well” he says, “it’s the material, the material is not good. It’s bad.” Oh sorry mister number boss guy. Next time we buy millions of dollars of material to make widgets, that our customers like and are happy with, I will most for sure take into consideration the fact that the little number machine doesn’t work very well. Instead of you fixing the machine, the factory will tailor the entire manufacturing process around your tiny ass little matter you got going on, possibly costing millions of dollars.
“Wow, that number really doesn’t look good,” To which he replies, “没办法.” (There is nothing that can be done)
Jesus. Quality problems. And you wonder why McDonald’s drinking glasses had lead. Or why some product made in China broke or sucks. Because there are hundreds of millions of workers just like this guy that really doesn’t give a rats ass. The ONLY thing he cares about is that pay check at the end of the month.
I apologize for the language, but you know.. It’s par for the course.
November 30th, 2010 §
So here we are making samples of widgets to give to potential customers. The last two times we made some widgets as samples the manager that was in charge of the process was at the doctor or something. Which made for some really hard times. Today is another day for making these beloved widget to give to a new client. Guess what happens. Yeah that’s right, homeboy in charge isn’t here again.
Is this just a cowinkidink or rather a scheme that he cooked up for some reason or another. He isn’t too happy with the factory manager right now. So is this his plan to do a crappy job, not show up, and hope the widgets come out like crap, at late, etc so that we lose potential business. Maybe.
It wouldn’t be the most outlandish thing to happen here.
Oh I forgot to mention that when we make these widgets we make more than one. So if we need 11 total we make 22 just to make sure that we make the best possibly ones. If one gets damaged and or something happens then we have a back up.
They only made enough components to complete 11.
August 9th, 2010 §
Ok, let me first say that I am angry. I’m a honest guy. I try to make an honest living. I get pissed when I found out that someone who is less intelligent, doesn’t work hard, starts scamming something and thus gets a house, car, and a better life than me, the hard working guy.
The system. You want to know what China is like this is what it is like. Here is an example of something that is happening right now somewhere. It’s all true, happens everyday, and everywhere.
Ok so when factories buy things from outside the country, the product has to go through customs. Happens everywhere. It’s normal. Most factories have a girl that handles this. It’s menial work, doesn’t really require a boss to perform.
Lets say that you bought material you need to manufacture you widgets with from America. You buy it and ship it to China. Now, this girl or employee has 1 month from ship date (something like that) to submit the proper paper work to China customs so that the material enters the country and gets shipped to the factory. Everyone is happy. Yah..
There are two ways to do everything in China. The proper legit way, and the throw money at it way. The throw money at it way is guaranteed to work. The proper way can be denied. This works for customs as well. Here is what is happening at a specific factory.
Factory orders product. Supplier ships it. Girl is supposed to submit paper work within a month. One effing month. She doesn’t. Customs holds material. Girl at factory talks to girl at customs. Girl at customs says, well, for X amount I can release it. Girl at factory says ok, doubles the amount, and tells factory boss that its going to be 2X for customs to release material. Boss says ok because he knows that there will be no problem afterward. Legit way possibly denied, shady way always works. So boss doesn’t care. Girl takes 2X and gives girl X thus she makes X money extra. Buys a house, a car, etc.
So. Here is the way things work here. People create problems so that there are problems to solve. Problems sometimes cost money and they just add a cut. The factory knows. I mean really, lets not be naive. They know, but they don’t want to deal with the problem. They throw money at it and if girl makes a few more bucks, then hey so be it.
It bothers me because of this. I work hard. If you pay me for a design, consultation, etc, I give you what you pay for. I work.
It’s like seeing two girls doing a similar job but one works hard and one extorts people and makes twice as much. Don’t you think that the girl who works hard would be angry when she found out the other girl doesn’t work hard but has a house, car, child. Can afford everything she wants. While the girl that works hard can’t afford anything even though she works hard.
Yeah point given.
The create problem thing relates to everyday factory life.
Haha. I just had a problem come up.. Haha. I can’t believe it. Ok. so I just looked at a photo of a widget. A photo that a customer sent. It has a major problem. A problem that no one here has ever seen before. Ok. so this problem is so obvious I don’t understand how the thirty people that touched and made this widget didn’t see it.
Or did they? They get paid whether they make widgets or not. Do they sabotage a sample to not get new customers so that they don’t have to work more? Do they blame it on something so that the boss has to throw money at it. O, well, we need this machine to fix this problem. This machine we have to buy from my friend who will give me a cut after you buy it from him.
I’m just on a rant right now. I suppose I should go to lunch and ponder ways to extort, bribe, and sabotage money out of people. My Audi RS6 isn’t going to buy itself you know.
July 8th, 2010 §
There is a Chinese saying or phrase, 差不多， which means pretty much the same. Almost, nearly, more or less. I hear this phrase all the time. Here is an example.
Making widgets. A customer wanted a widget a specific thickness. The thickness of the widget is supposed to be 1.2mm. We first sample the widget. Build one make sure it’s good then send to customer. Today we go to look at the sampled widget and find out that the thickness is 2mm. .8mm too thick. This is a real problem. It’s almost 100% too big. The department that makes the innards of the widget has the drawings, the people that design it have the drawings. So my question is this. If we are making a widget and the thickness has to be 1.2mm and I have a part that is 2mm, what makes me think that 2mm is ok when the drawing says 1.2mm. Well, it’s almost, nearly, more or less the same. It’s why I hear that phrase all the time. Because to a Chinese person pretty close is good enough.