Valuing the small improvement

By |2017-12-08T18:31:28+00:00February 11th, 2015|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

Small improvements matter. Yet, organizations often de-value them because they are small. They don't always do it intentionally. They may simple OVER-value the big improvements, through recognition and reward. Here are three important reasons to value making small improvements: 1. It's how you learn and build culture. Improvement is a muscle. Lots and lots of repetitions [...]

If we're going to fight fires, do it like the pros

By |2017-12-08T18:31:28+00:00November 2nd, 2014|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , |

Email comes in. React. Issue gets raised at a meeting. React. Customer calls. React. What do we call it when we spend all day reacting to the events around us? FIREFIGHTING! We all do it. It's how most people spend the majority of their day. Sometimes one of the biggest values I can provide as an [...]

The beauty and effectiveness of simple communication structures

By |2017-12-08T18:31:29+00:00May 12th, 2014|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , |

How do I get engaged communication going with my team? How do I reach them? How do we get people talking without it dragging into an endless venting session? These are questions many leaders struggle with. In an effort to engage people, they open up Pandora's Box of issues and get flooded with a bunch of [...]

Carry the wounded and shoot the stragglers: dealing with cynics and skeptics

By |2017-12-08T18:31:31+00:00December 2nd, 2013|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , |

A question frequently asked of me is “what do I do about the people who won’t get on board?” This is too broad of a question, because there isn’t a single answer to the question, except “it depends.” What does it depend on? Primarily, the reason for people resisting is unique to them. Do not overgeneralize [...]

Not every improvement has to be a breakthrough

By |2017-12-08T18:31:32+00:00April 28th, 2013|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , |

by Jamie Flinchbaugh So many teams that I coach, assess, observe, and otherwise engage in are looking for breakthrough results. That makes sense, right? Desperate times call for desperate measures (and we seem to keep being reminded that these are desperate times). And if I'm going to work on something, I might as well make it [...]

Embracing the scientific method

By |2017-12-08T18:31:32+00:00January 3rd, 2013|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , |

I read plenty of disturbing statements about lean, but I read one recently that really caught my attention because it seemed to rip the core of lean out of lean, and then almost claim credit for putting it back in. I was reading a copy of AME's Target Magazine from my huge backlog pile of reading, [...]

Video: Walk-out Wednesdays at Network Rail

By |2017-12-08T18:31:32+00:00January 2nd, 2013|Categories: Videos|Tags: , , , , , , |

In our first video with a client, Andy Carlino discusses with Phil Verster of Network Rail the practice of Walk-out Wednesdays. This routine gets people to the "gemba", or real place where the real work is done, to practice fundamentals such as direct observation and waste elimination. [viddler id=d69fd878 h=370 w=437]

Standard work is not a replacement for skill and knowledge

By |2017-12-08T18:31:33+00:00May 28th, 2012|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , |

Standard work takes many different forms once it is applied. In an assembly environment with 90 second cycle times, it may lay out step-by-step precise activities down to the second and whether you use your left hand or your right hand. When people see those examples, they think standard work doesn’t apply to them. That could [...]