It happens in every system. You find a problem, record your current state, experiment towards the target vision, come up with a fantastic solution and feel that great sense of achievement from making your environment better. Time passes, your system is in place and working, you even see some improvement in your system. However, it’s … Continue reading Lean Leadership – Using PDCA to drive improvements to the next level
I’ve heard it many times from really successful managers. “We’re doing improvement, we’re just not documenting it.” My eyebrows always raise a bit when I hear this particular phrase. That’s because the manager is missing a fantastic opportunity to energise and motivate their team with the magic of recognition and celebration of success. As an … Continue reading Lean Leadership – Why you must celebrate those tiny lean successes
The pursuit of perfection in systems and processes has been the key theme of my career for twenty years. Now I’ve read a ton of books, lean books, theory of constraint books, books about how to combine theory of constraints and lean and don’t even get me started on books about six sigma. But earlier in my career I found that not one of those books gave me any pointers on how to move a company from one state to another in terms of culture, or how to create momentum. For sure, I knew about Value Stream Mapping, PDCA cycles and Just in Time but what I was lacking was the secret formula to making lean or any other methodology really work.
As we have gotten closer and closer to the end of the first stage, our team has started talking about what happens next and which areas of the process will be worked on next. The resulting plan is so exciting that we all feel like something wonderful is just around the corner.
Earlier this year I wrote a post about managing workplace clutter and my own personal quest for a minimal ‘lean’ workspace. At the time, I wasn’t sure how easy my seriously pared down workspace was going to work out. Would I be buried under clutter a few months later, or constantly frustrated by having nowhere to put anything?
Change often comes with discomfort, even change for the better. Our minds are comfortable with the status quo and reluctant to forge ahead into known obstacles and discomfort. If we focus on WHY we want to change and fix our gaze to the horizon where our ambitions hover, we can see that discomfort is merely a necessary part of following the path to true north.
No one’s going to buy an improvement program just because a version of it works for someone else. Here lies the misconception. If someone has to sell you an improvement program, you’re probably not ready for it.