Saturday, January 30, 2010

My first published book

Dear friends and regular readers of Good Morning Yesterday. I am very happy to announce that I have just published my first book, something I have always wanted to do. The title of my book is ideas@work and it is available at the online bookstore Lulu.com. It is about how to manage the suggestions programme or what is more popularly known here in Singapore as the Staff Suggestion Scheme or SSS. I have written a more detailed article about this book in my other blog; My 5S Corner.

I should explain why I chose to publish my book on Lulu.com and not through a local publisher. The main reason is that the Singapore market is too small and I doubt any publisher would want to publish my book here. Unfortunately, going the ‘Lulu.com route’ pushes up the price considerably especially for Singapore buyers. This is because at Lulu.com, the books are manufactured on a Print-on-Demand mode.

I want to take this opportunity to thank some people. Besides the three Japanese experts who taught me about Japanese management concepts, Mr Hajime Suzuki, Mr Motomu Baba and the late Mr Kazuo Tsuchiya, I should thank three Singapore friends. They are Mr Koo Sem Khen, Chia Yew Heng and Peh Seng Ket.

Koo Sem Khen, or Koo-san as friends would call him, was formerly manager of the TQC promotion office at Matsushita Electronics (Mesa). I remember one occasion back in 1987 or thereabouts, when my employers the National Productivity Board wanted to send me to Penang to conduct a seminar on SSS for the Malaysian Productivity Association. At that time, I was still quite new at this and wasn’t very confident. I remember Koo-san actually coming to my house on the night before my trip to share with me about the SSS at Mesa. He was very proud of his company’s SSS calling it the ‘kingpin’ of their TQC movement.

The second gentleman is my old friend from my NPB days, Chia Yew Heng. Chia and I both went to Japan for our Productivity Development Project Fellowship training in 1985. After he left NPB, he worked as the training manager of TIBS; doubling as their productivity manager and taking charge of their SSS. I gave his managers a talk about SSS and gave him advice on how to manage and promote their SSS. Subsequently he went on to CIAS where he held a similar appointment. Whilst working with him on their SSS at TIBS, I gathered quite a bit of information from him.

The third person is another old friend, Peh Seng Ket who was head of the SSS secretariat at ODE. Likewise, I did some training for them and also worked with him and learnt a lot from him about how their suggestion system.

They say that a consultant is a person who borrows your watch, tells you the time and then walks away with it. I should thank these three old friends for their fine watches.

As I turn the bend on the last stretch of my career, I want to move away from ‘hardcore’ training and consultancy (which is very energy-sapping) and do more writing. Hence, regardless of whether or not my first book sells, I aim, God willing, to write two more books. One will be on my pet subject, 5S, and the second I have not decided. Maybe with all the interest in Productivity being stirring up in Singapore lately, I will write something on this subject.

My book is listed at Lulu.com online bookstore here.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

Lulu is a strange name to use for book publishing :(

peter said...

Wekk dine Chun See. You had always wanted to do something new, like this. Best wishes for your new endeavour.

peter said...

Sorry so excited that i typo mistake.

WELL DONE Chun See........Maybe you got a chapter for me to improve my typing productivity?

Brian and Tess said...

Best of luck with this venture Chun See. I was trained in TQM some years ago and always find the Japanese inspired approaches to management fascinating.

fr said...

Congratulations, Chun See, and best wishes to you in your preparations for your second and third books.

Zen said...

The idea of writing a book is incubating in chun see's mind for years. Perhaps he was busy then but after much encouragement from his buddies Chia and Peh, he decided to put productivity knowledge into action and the first 'baby' is borned. Congratulations to my younger brother, wish you the best! Hope that more 'babies' are on the way.

pinto said...

Congrats, Chun See!

Victor said...

Congrats, Chun See. Er... are we getting complimentary copies at the next FOYers' meet? :p

Icemoon said...

Congrats, Chun See!

I thought you gonna compile GMY into a book, lol

Tom said...

Congratulations, Chun See Well done.

derek tait said...

Congratulations, Chun See, I hope it sells very well. You should produce a book of all your excellent blog entries. I'm sure that it would sell well not only with Singaporeans but also with the many people around the world who have an interest in Singapore.
Best wishes,
Derek.

CHIA Yew Heng said...

Japanese methods are really very powerful techniques. Being into it for more than 25 years now and still find it extremely intriguing. Many with implementation experience, will know that they really worked. Singapore should thank the work done by Japanese Government in the 1980s for promoting and sharing their knowhow and today, many companies benefitted from them!

Congratulation to another MILESTONE in Japanese management sharing made possible by MR LAM CHUN SEE!

You have my support!

pehsk 白成杰 putih said...

Chun See,

Well done and keep it up!

Your pipe has been built, now just waiting to collect water.
Regards
pehsk

yg said...

chun see, congratlations! from blogger to book writer!

Zen said...

Peh - You mean collecting water which in cantonese means money and this is exactly what is most needed.

Lam Chun See said...

Zen. Yes, this is exactly what Peh meant by a pipe. He likens training and consultancy to bringing in water by means of a pail. This is very unproductive. In Cantonese we say, 手停口停; i.e. literally, when the hand stops, the mouth also has to stop; meaning you can only earn income when you are actually working. Investing your time and effort in writing a book on the other hand is more like building a pipe; even when you stop working, the 'water' continues to flow in.

This is true in principle, but of course that is provided there is demand for your book, and that means marketing. Hence, I do hope readers can give me some suggestions on how to market this new book of mine.

As for Victor' suggestion to give out complimentary copies to Foyer's, I am afraid the cost is too high and also I don't think the subject matter will interest you guys.

I may consider Derek's idea to turn Good Morning Yesterday into a book. If I can find a publisher and that day arrives, Foyers will be the first to get a complimentary copy. That's a promise.

unk Dicko said...

Congratulations C See!
It is never too early or even too late to write and publish your 1st book. What matters is as you've said how to market it.
That will depend on "who" needs these training concepts, skills and strategies. I can think of one big "who"...the schools, polys, and universities.
All our education institutions constantly require "new" ways to improve and increase performance..in teaching, management and administration. They are always on the lookout for "new ideas" especially those that work.
You may try to get in touch with the Teachers Network Centre at Grange Road.
All the Best!

Zen said...

This evening while watching the local news, I saw the finance minister (obviously the spokesman for the govt) is charting the country productivity movement for the next ten years, expecting to reach all levels of our society. From the look of it, the government means real business this time round. So chun see and his buddies like peh and chia should charge their 'batteries' ready for action, and I hope chun see will still have time to write his books (not a pipe dream).

Anonymous said...

Why not market and sell your book as an eBook through Amazon and Apple or through your site. Kindle and soon iPad are in the market to tap on this. It would be considerably cheaper than a hard copy. You can contact Amazon and Apple on this.

Anonymous said...

Or even as an iPhone or iPod App. That way, you can sell it in Singapore through ITunes App Store.

Edward said...

Congratulations on your first book Chun See! Yes, you’re right about the need to market and promote your book. This will be a costly exercise. You could advertise in the media, do a mail out to heads of business organisations, councils, corporations etc (electronically or hard copy), conduct seminars for prominent stakeholders, hire agents locally and overseas, encourage your friend and colleagues to promote your book (a chain communication concept) and lots more. Victor’s suggestion of giving complimentary copies has merits notwithstanding the costs involved. I’d restrict this to stakeholders of large organisations who can play a positive influence on the outcome towards your target audience. Good luck, and I’m sure all readers of GMY wish you every success!

Thimbuktu said...

Congrats and Best Wishes on the success of your first book which every GMY readers and fans must read.

Happy and Prosperous Lunar New Year - "Gong Hei Fatt Choy" for the launch of your more successful books to come.

Anonymous said...

Congrulations and well done. Just don't forget to brisk walk more....

Chuck

Cool Insider said...

Congratulations Chun See and well done! Publishing a book on productivity is probably the most timely thing to do in this day and age. Will highlight this in my blog too.

Andy Young* said...

Great you have penned your ideas and expertise into a book. Hope it sells well.
Cheers.

Anonymous said...

Mr Lam, I chanced upon your blog recently and enjoyed it alot!

I'm in my late 30s and some of the blog entries brought back some memories....

And BTW, you can even consider writing a book about the old Singapore etc....

pmp courses said...

wow. congratulations on your first published book.