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Promoting Small Group Activities at JK Lakshmi Cement Limited, Durg

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Date(s) - 08/06/2017 - 10/06/2017
All Day



Small Group Activity is known as focused or continuous improvement. SGA is a method for problem solving in teams by structurally searching for the root causes and eliminating them. After standardization of the solution, the reoccurrence of the problem is prevented. The feeling of ownership is intensified because those who are directly involved solve the problem in a multifunctional team. Because of the holistic approach of SGA in supporting ground level energy efficiency improvements on a continuous basis, KEP, which is a joint initiative of BEE & IIP, is supporting industry in organizing and implementing SGA at plant level. The support for SGA is being provided by KEP as a value added service under the SPARC model.

A three day SGA for JK Lakshmi Cement Limited, Durg was organized during 8th to 10th June, 2017.   The SGA for JK Lakshmi Cement Limited, Durg was designed to ensure that employees from all levels of production participated and went through a series of guided/ facilitated process that included self-assessment, listing of options, and assessment of options on their relative economics and impact and prioritization of actions most suited to meet the energy efficiency requirement of their specific area of plant operation. These sessions were carefully facilitates so that the employees work as a team in coordinated fashion and there is a healthy competition within and across groups in different operational areas. The basic objectives of carrying out these activities were:

  • To use the existing knowledge experience and wisdom of plant level operators to identify and analyze energy efficiency opportunities
  • To build the capacity of the plant level operators to implement energy efficiency actions.
  • To contribute to the improvement of productivity, profitability and development of the organization.

Small Group Activity for JK Lakshmi Plant, Durg started with an opening session by Shri K K Chakarvarti, Expert Consultant. Explaining the background of SGA, Shri Chakarvarti highlighted that SGA has tremendous potential in helping a plant realize its productivity and efficiency target, the onus of its success was with the employees at the operational level. He emphasized that the SGA needs to work as a team and identify innovative approaches through change in practice, technology, approaches to enhance the efficiency of the plant in their area of operation, reduce energy use and minimize wastage. He clarified that in doing SGA, the burden of employees doesn’t increase but infact helps them in improving their productivity, boosting their knowledge and confidence, team building and communication.

At the end of this session, the following 5 small groups were constituted based on the scope of their existing roles and work area:

  • Group 1: Saviour
  • Group 2: React
  • Group 3: Glow*worm
  • Group 4: Tesla
  • Group 5: Team-SGA

Each group comprised of 3-5 engineers. The engineers working in various departments viz. Instrumentation, Electrical, Production, Mechanical and Quality control were part of these groups.

These small groups visited their respective departments and through an intense facilitated brain storming sessions identified issues in the existing operations/technology areas and identified options for improvement as well as their respective saving possibilities. The group then analyzed all the options and prioritizes the most viable option based on the following:

  • The scale of the problem and its impact on existing operation
  • Analysis of the problem through tools such as “Cause and effect” diagram and “Why-Why” analysis
  • Existing options to solve the problem in hand
  • Prioritization the option based on the cost benefit analysis and suitability to the overall plant operation.
  • Assess the overall investment and energy saving potential of the option chosen by the SGA for implementation and making a case for investment by the management.


Groups preparing presentations on their identified projects

Once all groups had identified their projects for energy efficiency, they all re-convened and presented their projects. In these presentations, the groups pledged their commitment on energy efficiency in their operation before their peers and committed to certain energy saving targets based on the projects identified by them.


This session was attended by plant top management, including Shri Mukul Shrivastava, Vice President (Engineering) and various Plant Heads. Shri Chakarvarti gave a brief introduction of the SGA and groups formed. He informed the plant management that SGA has resulted in great enthusiasm among the group members and to find out the solutions and steps to achieve energy efficiency development. In total 310 kW power saving target has been planned by 5 Groups.

The following observations and comments were made by the HODs after the presentations:

  1. The plant engineers must increase the horizon to increase the power saving potential and should consider other areas as well.
  2. The plant should try to go below 49kWh/T of Clinker. To achieve this, Electrical department will give maximum support to all the groups
  3. In order to further strengthen the efforts, the Mechanical department will also extend all the support to the groups.
  4. All the groups to dedicatedly work to achieve the planned targets.

In the Concluding Session, Shri Mukul Srivastava, Vice President (Engineering), congratulated all the group members in undertaking the energy saving targets. He felt that these types of programs organized by KEP will help in developing leadership quality in our young engineers. Capacity building exercise and SGA provided the Durg plant a great opportunity, which was visible from the energy saving opportunities identified by the participants. Shri Srivastava also thanked the support provided by Shri S. K. Wali, Whole Time Director, JK Lakshmi Cement in giving this opportunity to participate in KEP’s Capacity Building Programme and Small Group Activities. He also thanked the KEP’s faculties in making both events successful.


Shri Mukul Srivastava, Vice President (Engineering) during his concluding remarks

The SGA’s will now prepare a detailed action plan for implementing the projects identified by their groups, the progress of which will be reviewed by the Management of JK Lakshmi Cement and  KEP at the end of 2 months. After this mid-term assessment, the final assessment will be carried out by the plant at the end of the implementation period to evaluate the relative performance of each group in terms of achieving their objects and energy saving targets proposed by them. To encourage the team members, JK Lakshmi Cement Limited may also institute a reward system to recognize the best achievers.

The workshop was concluded with a feedback session where the participants were requested to provide their inputs/suggestion for improving and enhancing the effectiveness of such small group activities organized at plant level.  80 % respondents mentioned that this program enhanced their critical thinking, oral communication, leadership skills, team and self- management along with an increase in understanding of diverse perspective while working as a team. 72% respondents felt that this training program helped in learn about one or more specific ideas that they will be able to implement in the area of energy efficiency and new approaches to energy management.

The SGAs can go along with in improving the technical and operational efficiency of the plant which in the long run can will not just help the plant meet its’ regulatory environment and standards but also increase the productivity and profitability of the organization.

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