Review – Saviour of the Free World

Mike Low spent his career working for Rolls-Royce in the Marine and Nuclear divisions. During his employment there he developed an interest in the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine and over time it became his passion. Like many Rolls-Royce engineers, the story of the Merlin swelled his heart with pride and after his retirement he decided he should write this book as a tribute to the contribution the Merlin made to the freedom we enjoy today.

As with any book on the Merlin it is essential to set the scene. The Eagle, Kestrel and ‘R’ are introduced to show the technical developments that were brought together in the P.V.12 engine; Sir Henry Royce’s last significant aero engine design. Royce died before the first engine was built and run, but his influence was in the DNA of the P.V.12 and subsequent Merlin prototypes. The development of the engine was vital as by the mid-1930’s there was increasing likelihood of another war in Europe. The text weaves together the various factors that drove the British governments re-armament policy while Chamberlains appeasement strategy bought a little time to build up the arsenal of machines and men.

The book looks at the Merlin and its applications as well as the engines against which it had to complete, be they industrial competitors in Britain or enemy adversaries. Low also considers the prominent figures that were instrumental in achieving the Merlin’s success and the phenomenal number of engines built. There is a chapter entitled ‘What if?’ where he looks at the fundamental issues and considers the impact if history had panned out differently. Suffice to say we are fortunate that it turned out the way it did, not least in the outcome of the Battle of Britain; the Merlin having played its part alongside the outstanding courage of the men and women in the air and on the ground. The final chapter considers ‘What Now?’ and the challenges of encouraging young people into engineering.

Ian Craighead
From ‘The Journal of The Rolls-Royce Heritage Trust’ Issue 8. December 2017

Review – The Bleedin’ Obvious Way To Improve Quality In Your Business

"Mike Low take a back-to-basics view on quality management, claiming that a solid foundation will leverage future endeavours. His message may be articulated in a casual way, but it by no means lessens the argument, as he backs it up with several relevant case studies.

The book’s key theme is to walk before you can run and this means ensuring everyone has a proper understanding of customer needs, as well as making sure these are communicated effectively throughout the organisation. The other key message that shines through is that you should only take on work that your organisation knows it can perform well through properly documented and audited processes.

Many modern organisations fail to ensure a proper foundation for their quality management efforts and jump in with the latest craze or buzzword, disengaging staff and undermining the whole activity. This book is invaluable for managers who want to ensure their current system is heading in the right drection."
Gerry Irvine, ACQI, Global HSQE
Manager for Veripos Limited

Published in Quality World Magazine, October 2014

Review – The Bleedin’ Obvious Way To Improve Quality In Your Business

“It is often said in business that “quality is a ‘given'” but delivering a poor quality product or service just once, will lead to customer dissatisfaction and loss of sales. Delivering a poor quality in business time and time again will be catastrophic for a company. Whether you’re a sole trader or a large corporate organisation, public or private sector, manufacturer or service provider, I would encourage you and your colleagues to read Mike Low’s book, The Bleedin’ Obvious Way to Improve Quality in Your Business.

Repeatability in your processes, attention to detail and communication are ‘bleedin’ obvious’ but we should all be applying this in daily business… but are we? Mike highlights these aspects, and others, in simple terms which should resonate from the CEO through to the self-employed and everyone in between.

In these days of Twitter and Facebook, your business reputation, good or bad, can be transmitted across the world in seconds. Putting in place some of Mike’s experiences contained within The Bleedin’ Obvious Way to Improve Quality in Your Business should help in your journey to improve your business. In an ever more competitive and connected world you can’t afford not to.”
Martin Farmer
Martin is a vice president in sales for a globally based manufacturing company and is a politician in local government delivering services to his local community.