The Basic Principals of Operations Management




Validated daily by experiences of working folks everywhere…



Allen’s Axiom:

When all else fails, read the instructions.



Chisholm’s Law:

Anytime things appear to be going better, you have overlooked something.



Corrigan’s Theorem or “Jam Side Down”:

If there is more than one way in which a system can operate, it will usually operate the wrong way.



Finagle’s Law:

Once a job is fouled up, anything done to improve it makes it worse.



Fitzgibbon’s Law:

Creativity varies inversely with the number of cooks involved with the broth.



Fitzgibbon’s Corollary:

The number of problems encountered during a project is directly proportional to N squared, where N is equal to the number of people involved.



Flaple’s Law of the Perversity of Inanimate Objects:

Any inanimate object, regardless of its composition or configuration, may be expected to perform at any time in a totally unexpected manner for reasons that are either entirely obscure or completely mysterious.



Gummidge’s Law:

The amount of expertise available for a given project varies in inverse proportion to the statement understood by the general public.



Gumperson’s Law:

The probability of a given event occurring is inversely proportional to its desirability.



Horner’s Five Thumb Postulate:

Experience varies directly with the value of the equipment ruined.



Kyrie Liason:

If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, then you don’t understand the problem.



Maslow’s Maxim:

If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to treat everything as though it were a nail.



Murphy’s Law:

If anything can go wrong – it will.



Occam’s Razor:

The simplest explanation of any phenomena is probably the correct one.



Parkinson’s Law:

The time required for a project varies to maintain the utilization of the manpower allocated close to one-hundred percent.



Patrick’s Theorism:

If the experiment works, you must be using the wrong equipment.



Perdin’s Law:

In a crisis that forces a choice to be made among alternative courses of action, most people will choose the worst one possible.



Porteous’s Proposition:

One million times nothing – is still nothing.



Richard’s Rule:

When all else fails, fake it.



Ross’s Law:

Never characterize the importance of a statement in advance.



Salute to Nixon (remember him?):

Quit when you’re still behind.



Shanahan’s Law:

The length of a meeting rises with the square of the number of people attending.



Sod’s Law (Prevails when Flaple’s Law does not hold):

In any given set of circumstances, events will combine to provide the maximum of inconvenience for the greatest number of people.



Skinner’s Constant:

That quantity which when multiplied times, divided by, added to, or subtracted from the answer you got – gives you the answer you should have gotten in the first place.  Also known as Finnegan’s Finagling Factor.



The Compensation Corollary:

The experiment may be considered a success if no more than fifty percent of the observed measurements must be discarded to obtain a correspondence with theory.



The Futility Factor:

No experiment is ever a complete failure.  It can always serve as a bad example.



The Ninth Law:

The simpler, smaller and less ambitious a project is – the harder it is to justify, the harder it is to implement and the less well it will perform.



Author/Originator Unknown…



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