UPS as an example of optimisations
So, it’s quite well known tha ta while ago UPS reduced the need for their trucks to turn left since turning right means not having to stop at traffic lights. This change saved them millions of dollars.
Recently, however, I learnt that the UPS trucks have a semi-transparent fiberglass roof that act as a light during the day and allow for the drivers to see well in the back without turning on the lights themselves. So, this makes the truck (marginally) more energy efficient but it also means that if the driver forgets to turn the light on they’d have to go back to the cab probably. In one instance that might mean just a few seconds but if you extrapolate that to hundreds of thousands of deliveries that’s a lot of time wasted.
I really like this because its an example of optimisation that works and brings returns when you’re at such a large scale as the UPS but would be nonsensical for an early stage startup to do.
Startups need to be focussing on the 20% of the work for 80% of the returns in the beginning since those returns are disproportionate to the amount of effort put in. Incremental improvements only come into play once scale is reached or at the very least when the correct process is identified.
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