HOMER M SARASOHN “A LEADER’s main obligation is to secure the faith and respect of those under him. The leader must himself be the finest example of what he would like to see in his followers.” Presentation by Soubhagya PJ Prof. Nimal C Namboodiripad
SARASOHN - A short life history Born in 1916 in the USA. Took graduation in physics and worked for MIC Radio Laboratory, designing radio transmitters. During second world war, served as a paratrooper. In 1946, was invited to Tokyo for rebuilding the communication infrastructure of Japan. Was successful in modernizing Japanese industry. Returned back to U.S. in 1950. Died on 28 September 2001 at the age of 85.
A glance at his career life… Before coming to Japan Raytheon manufacturing company in Waltham. MIT Radiation Lab . In Japan Chief of Industry Branch - The Civil Communication Section. After returning from Japan Technical Advisor to the U.S Asst. Secretary for S&T. Member of U.S delegation to Soviet Union and Egypt. President of Engg.Management Society. Director of Engg Communication - IBM. Divisional Director - IEEE.
Father of Japanese Electronics Industry Mr. Sarasohn was only 29 when General Douglas MacArthur, Head of the Occupation Forces in Japan, summoned him to Tokyo to restore Japan’s communication industry following its destruction during World War II. From 1946 to 1950 was Chief of the Industry Branch - Occupation Army’s Civil Communication Section [CCS],Mr.Sarasohn took the lead in helping Japan rebuild its capacity to manufacture radio, telephone and telegraph equipment and to assure the reliable quality of its industrial production.All these were made possible by the CCS Management Seminar in Tokyo and Osaka conducted by Mr.Sarasohn and Mr.Charles Protzman.
CCS Management SeminarThe CCS Management Seminar covered a systems approach tomanufacturing, integrating customer satisfaction into continued product development.The seminars taught industrial engineering, cost control and the value of investing in R&D. Quality, the managers were taught, is a measure of the worthiness of the companies . The main stress of the course was on quality.The CCS Management Seminar was given for the next 25 years by the Japan Management Association, after both men left Japan in 1950.Their text book, Fundamentals of Industrial Management is still in print in Japan.
Why haven’t we heard much of poor old Homer?Because of the American quality guru W.Edwards Deming, a master of self-promotion, who was brought to Japan to continue the work of Sarasohn and Protzman. While Sarsohn was MacArthur’s man, Deming was perceived as the Japan Union of Scientists and Engineer’s man, which helped ensure his place in history.
To conclude… The Japanese electronics industry was born again,switching from maximizing production to maximizing yield. It has been understood in a way that theindustry never had before the significance of Homer Sarasohn’s lessons in product quality. Homer was preaching it in 1948, but the Japanese electronic industry better understood it only in 1968.The modern industry should be really grateful to Mr.Homer Sarasohn.