Crunching the numbers, oh yeah baby. Data Analysis = Bronwyn as Happy As A Pig In Mud! True story.


So even though thus far I’ve only gotten 8 responses from the 32 organisations in my target population, I have started capturing and analysing my data in MS Excel. Decided not to use SPSS – with so little data, MS Excel can do everything I want, plus Excel spider charts look nicer. Spider charts are perfect to present the type of data I’m analysing – easy way to communicate lots of information quickly.

But Oh Vrek, what a feeling! Only a very few other feelings can compare. Like a part of my brain switched on that I haven’t used in a while. Absolutely loving it – each and every time MS Excel moans at me and tells me my formula is wrong. And I curse under my breath – sometimes out loud, but when I check it again…indeed. I get a kick every time that happens. Oh the things we do for fun.

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For those mildly interested in the details of my research, as is the nature of a true academic, I present to you a brief summary of my findings thus far 🙂

So the key concepts in my study are Quality Management (leading to Operational Excellence in a pharmaceutical organisation) and Culture. I’m basically investigating what culture supports quality management to make certain organisations just flipping brilliant at what they do (aka operationally excellent). I’ve delineated Operational Excellence (OpEx) in nine dimensions of Quality Management, namely Strategy, Customer Focus, Employee Empowerment etc. etc (see the diagram below). I have also identified four distinct organisational culture type based on research by Cameron and Quinn (2010). The cultures are the Clan culture = family orientated/mentoring culture; the Adhocracy culture = Risk takers and innovators; the Market driven culture = always chasing the money; and finally the Hierarchical culture = a pretty anal bunch who insist on always following strict and set procedures. Even though I sound dismissive of the hierarchical culture, please know in pharmaceutical manufacturing you need more of that than anything else because the health and lives of people are at stake. Anyway, no more boring details.

Check the pictures below. I have profiled (admittedly with little data), the GMP licenced pharmaceutical organisations in South Africa to see how well the are doing in terms of Quality Management Practices (or OpEx) and then also profiled them based on dominant cultural characteristics….

SA Pharma-page-001And so the next thing I have to do is go visit some of them, to find out how it is that they do what it is that they do. And I also want to understand what is it about a particular organisation’s culture that makes the score higher than others in the nine dimensions of Quality Management. ….But that’s not all folks, since this is a PhD, I must develop a model for other organisations to use, that will help them become operationally excellent. But that’s enough of this for now.  Bwhahahaha …pretend evil laugh evil laugh… My raw data awaits me for some more number crunching. Catch you on the flip side peeps.