Engaging Front Line Staff with Kaizen


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Joe Swartz and Mark Graban co-authors of Healthcare Kaizen: Engaging Front-Line Staff in Sustainable Continuous Improvements were my guests on the Business901podcast. This is a transcription of the podcast.

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Engaging Front Line Staff with Kaizen

  1. 1. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsEngaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Guests were Joe Swartz and Mark Graban Related Podcast: Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  2. 2. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsHealthcare Kaizen focuses on the principles methods of dailycontinuous improvement, or “Kaizen,” for healthcareprofessionals and organizations. In 1989, Dr. Donald M. Berwick,founder of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and formeradministrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services,endorsed the principles of Kaizen in the New England Journal ofMedicine, describing it as "the continuous search for opportunitiesfor all processes to get better." This book shows how to make thisgoal a reality.About the Authors:Mark Graban is an author, consultant, and speaker in the field oflean healthcare. He is the author of Lean Hospitals. Mark hasworked as a consultant and coach to healthcare organizationsthroughout North America and Europe. He was formerly a seniorfellow with the Lean Enterprise Institute and continues to serveas a faculty member.Joseph E. Swartz is the Director of Business Transformation forFranciscan St. Francis Health of Indianapolis, IN. He has beenleading continuous improvement efforts for 18 years, including 7years in healthcare, and has led more than 200 Lean and SixSigma improvement projects. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  3. 3. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systems Transcription of PodcastJoe Dager: Welcome everyone. This is Joe Dager, the host ofthe Business901 podcast. With me today is Joseph Swartz. Hehas been leading continuous improvement efforts for 10 years,including seven years in healthcare, and has led more than 200Lean Six Sigma improvement projects. He is currently thedirector of business transformation for Franciscan St. FrancisHealth in Indianapolis, Indiana.Along with him is Mark Graban, who is the author of "LeanHospitals" and has worked as a consultant and coach tohealthcare organizations throughout the world.Mark serves as a faculty member at the Lean Enterprise Instituteand is also the Chief Improvement Officer for KaiNexus; a startupsoftware company that helps healthcare organizations managescontinuous improvement efforts.Mark writes the immensely popular "Lean Blog," which not onlyfocuses on healthcare but touches upon all things Lean.I would like to welcome the both of you and could I just start withhow the two of you became connected for your new book,"Healthcare Kaizen"?Mark Graban: Sure. Thanks, Joe. Ill address that and then Joecan tell, I guess, his side of the story. It turns out we have ashared connection with Norman Bodak, who people might knowfor all the trips that Norman has made to Japan, and all the booksthat hes written about Kaizen and continuous improvement. Backin 2005, when I barely knew Norman, I was getting intohealthcare, and somehow we got connected. Norman said, "Hey,I know this guy Joe Swartz, who is also moving frommanufacturing to healthcare. I think you two should talk." Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  4. 4. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsI know Joe, and I traded emails. I dont know if we talked on thephone. We might have. Then, a couple of years later, we crossedpaths at one of the Society for Health Systems annualconferences.Joe was presenting on Kaizen, and you could see all the greatstuff they were doing at Franciscan St. Francis Health. We gottalking and kind of started brainstorming and the long, shortstory; we decided it would be a very good collaboration to do thebook together.Joe: What was the good part of having a co-author? Becauseyouve authored, a book on your own before, Mark, but what wasa good part?Mark: Joe has written and co-authored books before, and he cantell you about that. It turned out to be a good collaborationbecause, for better or for worse, my experience has been flittingaround as a consultant with lots of different organizations andintroducing people to Lean and Kaizen in lots of different places.Joe brings such a depth of experience thats so impressive, ofthese five-plus years of really driving this change deeply in oneorganization. Those different examples and experiences, I think,came together really well into a great story in the book. Joe cantell you more.Joe: Joe, what other books did you work on?Joseph Swartz: I wrote a book with my father called "SeeingDavid in the Stone." Its about how to find and seize greatopportunities. Then, I was a contributing author to another bookon leadership. A books such a huge project, that its a challengeto pull off individually. Ive partnered with all the last ones, and Ifound it very advantageous.I think partnering with Mark was a coup on my part. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  5. 5. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsI feel grateful and fortunate to have partnered with Mark;because he brought a whole dimension to this that I couldnt haveanticipated. I had bits and pieces but he was instrumental inbringing linking it all together. He really thought through thestructure of it very well, and that was hugely advantageous.Then, hes a master marketer and a master in so many otherdimensions, so Im so appreciative to be a part of that.Joe: I think its so interesting how you complement each other,having that experience of five years at Franciscan St. FrancisHealth, where youre really able to see things that people cantsee from the outside a lot of times. That is really remarkable toadd to Marks expertise for the collaborative effort. Joe, did youstart with Franciscan St. Francis Health when they first started tomove towards Lean?Joseph: Yes, I did. I was brought in with the initial team. I wasone of the team members. I went in as a contractor, and theyended up hiring me. As far as the Kaizen, Mark and I were on asimilar journey in continuous improvement. We were discoveringsimilar stuff in healthcare -- a good idea to get back to the basicsand teach those basics, and teach people how to make simpleimprovements and get their confidence with these improvements,so they can make bigger and bigger and bigger improvements astime goes along. Its really about developing people.He was on the same track, and we would dialogue back and forthabout that.Joe: I think its really tough for a hospital, more specifically, tobe able to institute continuous improvement or institute Lean,from my vantage point. There are so many shifts, so manydifferent staffing things, numerous shifts and types of personnel.Can you mention how you go about, maybe, immersing people inprograms like this? Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  6. 6. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsMark: Well, from what Ive seen, thats a challenge, the fact thatyouve got lots of part-time people, you have people workingmultiple shifts and part-time and weekends. Theres a bigcommunication challenge, in terms of training and educatingpeople about what Kaizen is all about. Then, therere just thechallenges of the communication across different shifts as peopleidentify opportunities, as theyre proposing countermeasures toimplement, as theyre testing and trying to help spread thosechanges. Communication is critical. Ive seen a lot of things work.Simple bulletin boards can help communicate across shifts.You have an idea; you have a structure. Rather than doing thesuggestion box model -- I think suggestion boxes are a model ofthe past -- having ideas out on a bulletin board allows people towalk by and see whats going on, contribute notes and talk aboutit.Then, you have people using software. Ive been involved in astartup company called KaiNexus that was started by anemergency-room doctor who worked night shifts. That was partof his problem statement, "How do we communicate? There reallyarent managers around on the night shift. How do we makechange happen?"Whether its cards and bulletin boards or software, thererecreative things that people are doing to break down some ofthose communication barriers.Joe: Does the book introduce Kaizen at a pretty basic level foreverybody to understand?Mark: It really does. We say its change, but the word "Kaizen,"if you break it down into its two Japanese root words, "kai"means change and "zen" means good. Its not just change. Itsmaking sure its change for the better, and that its really animprovement. Thats one of the core fundamental things that wewrote about. Not all changes are good. We need to make sure Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  7. 7. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systemsthat were following a good, systematic but not overlycomplicated Plan-Do-Study-Adjust cycle. It comes back to theDeming cycle of not just doing things, but doing things as a testwith a hypothesis and making sure, "Did we really get the resultsthat we expected?"A lot of times, thats where people get frustrated, when changesget forced on them and theres never any reevaluation. Were notreally doing the full PDSA cycle. Thats one of the fundamentalsthat weve tried to address in the book.Joe: Ive always heard that most people will say of the PDSAcycle, people do the "Plan" really well. Maybe even the "Do" partwell. Its the "Study" and the "Adjust" that they fail at?Mark: Sometimes I wonder if we even do the "Plan" well, if youinclude the "Plan" as understanding the current condition andunderstanding root causes. A lot of times, its just a "Do" cycle ora Do-Do cycle.Joe: One of the things you mentioned in the book, "Its oftensaid that people hate to change." You go on to say that the bookdisproves this notion. Can you let me know the secret or let thelisteners know the secret, without buying the book?Mark: Theres a great expression -- its often attributed either toPeter Drucker or Peter Sholtes -- the expression is somethinglike, "People dont hate change. They hate being changed."Theres a world of difference between having change forced onyou versus getting to participate in that process. Generally,people like their own ideas. Kaizen is really about that process ofengaging people to come up with ideas in a grassroots,bottom-up way, if you will. One example I often use is lets saythat you and a bunch of coworkers are going to go out to lunch.Its Wednesday and its time for your group to go, and somebodysays, "Ive decided were all going to go and try a new restaurant. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  8. 8. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsIts this kind of fusion of Pan-British-Asian-Thai-Mongoliancuisine. It sounds great."Well, everybody else in the group might pause and think, "I donteven know what that is! I dont know if that sounds good or not."People might resist that new restaurant, or they might cancel andnot want to go, but if we had a process where everybody hadinput -- Kaizens not just about voting on what do we do or whatdont we do -- but if you got to choose the restaurant, I thinkgenerally people like going to new places when its either theirdecision or at least they have some input on it, as opposed tobeing forced or dragged into it. I think that makes a world ofdifference.I dont know if my examples a silly one, but I think things likethat happen in the workplace sometimes. "I came up with a newidea. Everyone else should love it." Well, its almost; I think,human nature for people to question and challenge other peoplesideas, and thats a good thing. We just need to make sure wehave mechanisms where people can actually have thatdiscussion, rather than being forced to adopt a new idea or a newstandard.Joseph: We devoted a whole chapter (chapter 8) to discussingideas when its not just you and your idea that youre going to doand only you have to change when you involve other people whoalso have to change, and we address that. In chapter 8, we call itthe Art of Kaizen.Joe: What are some of the oddities in developing Kaizen inhealthcare?Mark: You know, maybe its an oddity in a very good way.People in healthcare have such a passion for patients, and for thework that they do. The intrinsic motivation thats there inhealthcare is very high, and its something we can really tap intocompared with other industries. When we look at getting people Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  9. 9. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systemsstarted early on, and Joe has a lot great examples about this too;youre getting people engaged in Kaizen and helping them comeup with little things that either make their day go a little moresmoothly.You identify some little improvement, something that bothers youor gets in the way of doing what you need to do for patients, andlets address that little thing.Or lets come up with little things that make the patientsexperience better, lets improve patient safety, quality, andoutcomes. Its not that hard to get people excited about that.Thats where I think Kaizen is different than a lot of top-downimprovement or change initiatives that are driven in the name ofcost-cutting. T idea of cost-cutting, I dont know if it inspirespeople in other industries, but I think particularly in healthcare,the idea that, "Oh well were going to go and save a lot ofmoney," that doesnt get people real excited.And the great thing about Kaizen is that when you focus on allthese little things (and its often hard to quantify) quality, staffand patient satisfaction; you do all these things. You reducewaiting time; that cost and financial improvement tends tohappen as an end result cumulated impact of all these differentchanges.So I think we can tap into that motivation, and I think comparedto my days in manufacturing thats a huge advantage inhealthcare, that we have that level of intrinsic motivation.Joe: Theres been a lot of Six Sigma or as some people call it,Lean Six Sigma driven into healthcare and they go throughtraining cycles and develop green belts in healthcare. Whats thedifference between Lean and Kaizen being at a healthcare facilityversus that Six Sigma mentality? Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  10. 10. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsJoseph: We started lean Six Sigma here at St. Francis Health in2006. We introduced Kaizen in 2007, a year later, and I thinkafter a year of implementing Lean Six Sigma we realized if weregoing to reach all 4,000 employees its not going to be throughLean Six Sigma. The problem was with Lean Six Sigma youdevelop these project teams that have 12 to 18 people onthem - sometimes more sometimes less. They take numerousmonths to execute and complete. So even if you have a few blackbelts youre only going to impact 50-100 people in a year, youregoing to infect 50-100 people with continuous improvement andhow to do it.We needed to infect 4,000 employees on how to make continuousimprovement happen. It would take us 20-some years to pull thatoff. We knew we needed something beyond Lean Six Sigma.Ive seen some similar kind of stuff done in manufacturing withKaizen, where we could engage everyone in theorganization - teach them the basic simple tools of Lean and letthem make individual improvements and work in small teams,and it was powerful and I knew we needed that for healthcare.I think Mark was on the same journey. He saw thats somethingwe need in healthcare, and in order to engage all the employeesbecause were under such pressure to change so rapidly inhealthcare on so many different fronts.Mark: Even this idea as Joe puts it about getting everyoneinvolved in improvement; Six Sigma doesnt always bring that toan organization. But we see in a lot of organizations where Leanhasnt brought improvement to everybody either. We share someof those examples in the book. For example, ThedaCare is reallywell known for the first four years of their Lean work. It was allweek-long rapid-improvement events all the time. That was theironly model for improvement, and their only mode of change. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  11. 11. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsWeek-long events are great - not every problem, not everyopportunity requires a formal team and three days or five days,so like Joe was saying ThedaCare learned they werent able toteach people or touch people fast enough by only doing theseweek-long events.So they started layering what they called continuous dailyimprovement or daily Kaizen on top of those events and there areother examples in the book of people who have started with dailyKaizen and then started doing week-long events once startedpeople learned the Kaizen model and PDSA model. I think, even ifyou look at Toyota as an example, theyll teach that you shouldntchoose one type of improvement or another. Its really all Kaizen.Its all PDSA.Its either relatively small things that you can address in arelatively short timeframe, or its something that requires aweeklong event, or theres bigger systemic change that canteven be done in just one week. These different modes ofimprovement, even Six Sigma, its all pretty compatible. They cancoexist.Joe: Youre really allowing Lean to grow organically, but how doyou share? We talked about the different culture thats at ahospital. How do you spread that?Mark: People in healthcare really prize and value this idea ofautonomy. "I get to do things my way," especially, doctors andsurgeons and, sometimes, with nurses and other healthcareprofessionals. I think that just goes to show why the old,top-down change model doesnt work in that environment. Infact, there was somebody who commented on my blog this week,a doctor from a hospital who said, "Theres some sort of newprotocol that was just forced out on everybody from on high, andnot everybody agreed that this is the thing we should be doingwith patients." Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  12. 12. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsThe one thing he highlighted, he didnt understand the problem.What problem is this addressing? It was a very low level of staffengagement, and it certainly wasnt Kaizen; it wasnt anythingLean. Some senior medical leader or administrative leader willsay, "OK. Well, we learned heres some best practice from someother organization. Everyone needs to do it."Well, usually that doesnt really translate to a lot of change.People nod their heads. "Uh-huh, uh-huh." Then, they dont do it.This Kaizen model sometimes is very time-consuming. Yourebuilding consensus. Youre trying to get people on the same page.It doesnt mean that people magically agree, but when you gothrough the steps of making sure youve identified andcommunicated a problem, and youve talked about the root causeand youve talked about, "Heres this countermeasure and hereswhy we think its going to work."When you have that type of communication, as Joe mentioned,and as we talk about in chapter eight of the book, you can do alot to engage people and bring people on board, when youinvolve them in this type of improvement. A little of involvementgoes a long way. A lot of times, people just get bent out of shape,"You never involve me. You never communicated."Its understandable, why they balk or not want to be involved. Ithink thats where the things that we have in the book and in thisKaizen model, the softer side of Kaizen, if you will, I think theresa lot to contribute to try to help people engage physicians andstaff members in a better way.Joe: Can someone touch upon what the Kaizen Wall of Fame isthere?Mark: One of the key steps in the Kaizen model is to documentand share what youve done. Not just to do a bunch of change,but part of the study cycle is to do a little write-up, a Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  13. 13. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systemsbefore-and-after with pictures, diagrams, and just show simply,"Heres what weve done." You can post that on a bulletin boardin a department. You can post it out by the cafeteria, if its anidea that you want people across the hospital to see and learnfrom and go choose to adopt.Or, you have organizations that use software. Thats one thingthat KaiNexus does. Joes organization has some software thattheyve built to do a similar thing. Joe, do you want to...you canshare a little about how share these Kaizen success stories,maybe.Joseph: We have a bulletin board in our cafeteria that we postmonthly, some of the really rare Kaizens. We also send them outthrough our COO periodically through email. In individualdepartments, department leaders have a bulletin board wherethey post notable Kaizens that their staff has done. Marks right.The real power of Kaizen is in the doing, but its also in thesharing. Someone else sees an idea that someone else has done.Theyre free to adopt it and implement it in their processes intheir unique way, and then its their Kaizen. They can use ourdatabase to record what they did, in the database, and itsaccessible by all 4,000 employees once its in the database.Joe: Is it just accepted that this works or...how is it controlled?Does someone have veto power over some of these ideas? Howdo you control a Kaizen or a cycle like that, to maintain control?Mark: Well, I guess part of what were trying to challenge is theidea of control that managers and leaders need to be lesscontrolling of their employees and the change process. Thatdoesnt mean that leaders are completely hands-off or laissezfaire about things. As Joe mentioned earlier, the second step ofthe Kaizen model is to discuss problems and discuss potentialchanges. The role of a manager shifts from being the oldsuggestion box model of some far off committee or manager just Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  14. 14. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systemsvoting "Yea" or "Nay" on suggestions instead of thinking of orapproving or rejecting Kaizen ideas. Its really more aboutcollaborating, coaching, and facilitating.I know that sounds really swishy, soft, and fuzzy but this idea ifsomebody has a "bad idea" thats impractical or too expensive, oris going to have an impact on a different department.Sometimes the managers job is to raise that as an issue but notthen just saying, no, we cant do that. The manager can helpcoach and guide to find something else that we can do thataddresses that issue in a better way or addresses that issuewithout side effects. Sometimes people come up with ideas thatare well intended but sub optimizing.One example that comes to mind, inpatient unit, there might bedelays in seeing new patients once theyve been brought up tothe unit. Once I saw a Kaizen idea where one of the nurses said,"Lets delay admissions from the emergency department untilwere done with shift change."As a manager you may say thats one way of addressing it. Butthink of the implications now, were just forcing our problem backon a different department. Making the patient wait in theemergency department is not good for that patient. Its not goodfor other patients in the way that it might back up the ED.If the problem is we cant see patients promptly because weredealing with shift change, we need to come up with local processimprovements that would change the way were doing handoff toshift communications so that we can see the patient without justforcing them back, keeping them in the ED longer.Sometimes a manager has to play that role of challenging ideasbut doing so not in a way that turns people off. Becausesometimes people say, hey, I had an idea, and you said no soforget Kaizen. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  15. 15. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsIm not participating anymore. I mean, theres a real fine line andgray area between challenging people and doing so in aconstructive way that doesnt turn them off.Joseph: That was one of the concerns when we first rolled outKaizen. Some of our leaders had that very concern, uncontrolledchange. Really, there are checks and balances in the system likeMark says. We first ask Kaizeneers that practice this to go discussthe idea with anybody that the change will affect. Peer pressure ispretty powerful. They cant just go out and do anything theywant. Theyd have to check with their teammates and stuff.Then, like Mark said the supervisor or the manager coach. Reallytheres very few that get implemented that is really wild,uncontrolled change.Mark: This isnt just lots of people running around doingrandom, unconnected things. There are these checks andbalances. If were doing a test of change, if weve tried somethingthat maybe it wasnt as well thought out as maybe it should bethen we can learn from that.So managers can make sure that people arent doing things thatwould likely hurt a patient or hurt a coworker. Sometimes I say,well, Im not sure if thats going to work, but it doesnt seem likeit will really cause any harm. Lets try it. Lets follow the PDSAmodel and see what the results are because you might bepleasantly surprised, or it may confirm your suspicion of well; Ithought that wasnt going to work. We tested and learned andconfirmed that it didnt work.Thats something that helps you do Kaizen better in the future.Joe: I think those were great points because I can justremember in my experience biting my tongue a couple times.Gee, Im glad I didnt say anything because it worked. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  16. 16. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsWhat can Lean learn from healthcare?Mark: Lean is incredibly customer focused. The patients focus inhealthcare is a powerful thing. I think this idea of extending thatback to manufacturing or other settings but not being fixated onjust our internal processes but really thinking about do weunderstand what the customers need. One thing Ive seen thatworks great in healthcare, if youre doing a rapid improvementevent is to actually have a real patient come and participate inthat process because a lot of times its tempting in healthcare.If somebody on the team has been a patient at the hospitalwhere they work, or theyve had a child whos been a patienttheyll say, Ill play the role of the patient.But an insider whos also been a patient often knows way toomuch about the organization. They dont have the wide-eyednewness of an outsider. So having a real patient participate in ateam can be really helpful.Theyll tell you what they value and what irritates them. I thinkmaybe theres an opportunity, hopefully some people inmanufacturing are doing this that they actually have customerscome and participate in Kaizen improvement in a very direct way.Joe: Can you tell me a little about the target audience of yourbook, who should buy it and a quick summary of it?Mark: Well, the book is published by Productivity Press. Thetarget audience -- we address this in the introduction. Theres alot of material in the book that we think is helpful for people atdifferent levels, in different ways. We think senior leaders aregoing to read the book in a certain way and jump through certainchapters. Front-line staff and front-line managers, I think, are Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  17. 17. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systemsgoing to read it in a different way and take out all of theexamples.There are 120 plus examples from different organizations of realKaizen improvements. I think the internal Lean coaches, Leanfacilitators, are one of the other core audiences. How do they helpset up and establish a Kaizen program for the wholeorganization?We hope theres a little something for everybody. If they dontread the whole book, therere at least chapters and things thatthey can gain from the whole thing.Joe: Joe, could you tell me a little about the examplesthroughout the book?Joseph: Sure. Theyre real. Theyre from our staff. We combedthrough them and looked for the best, and those are the onesthat we post. We just took a bunch of the ones that got postedover the years. Some of them, weve worked with the staff tokind of refine, but the nice thing about it is that weve got awhole cross-section from all kinds of different areas within thehospital and all kinds of different Lean scenes, Lean disciplines. Itreally hits across a wide area.Joe: The book has; I think it says, over 200 color photographs init, which is just a huge number for any book that Ive ever seen.Mark: Well, we were fortunate that Productivity Presscollaborated, in terms of doing full-color printing, because thereare so many great pictures. We want it to teach by example, notthat people would go and copy those specific ideas, but just tohelp illustrate examples of Kaizen and different types ofimprovements. There might be cases where somebody might say,"Oh, great. Look at that idea. We could adopt that tomorrow."But thats not really the point. We want people to be inspired bywhat they see in the book and go and make their own Kaizens. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  18. 18. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsIn fact, on the books website, hckaizen.com, theres a waywhere -- some people have actually started doing this -- peoplecan submit their own Kaizen examples. Were posting those onthe web, to have a kind of living extension of the book wherepeople can help share -- like Joe mentioned -- not just withintheir own organization but within the broader healthcarecommunity.In the conclusion of the book, we pose it as an experiment to see,"Can we share outside of our own organizations?" Its going to bereally interesting to see how that develops. Thats one littlefeature there, within the website, thats going to hopefully helpcollect even more great examples.Joe: If someone could only take one thing away from the book,what would you want them to take away?Mark: My thing would be, "Everybody can help improve.Everybody, "Weve mentioned Norm Bodak and I give credit toMasaaki Imai, who says in his earlier works, "Kaizen is foreverybody, from the CEO to the janitor and all points inbetween." In the book, we have examples from housekeepingstaff. Weve got an example from Joes COO. We almost got thatwhole spectrum. The one message, I would say, is that no matterwhat your education level, no matter what your job title, Kaizenis about improving your own work.Everybody who does any job is an expert in that job, and theyhave a big role to play in improvement.Joseph: I think were all built with this innate ability or desire tobe creative. I think what Kaizen does is it asks every employee tobe creative. In that, I think it unleashes a lot of energy.Everybody wants to contribute. Everybody wants to participate,and they can do that in a creative way that advances theorganization. I think it creates and develops people that do thaton a daily basis. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  19. 19. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing SystemsJoe: How can someone purchase the book? You mentioned thewebsite.Mark: There are links, if people go to hckaizen.com, or they canfind the book on Amazon. They can find it onBarnesandNoble.com. They can go to productivitypress.com. Wedont know for certain, but were told that the book will beavailable in Kindle formats at or about the same time that thepaperback is available, here at the end of June. This is a versionof a Kindle book that is actually like the printed page, so itll workgreat on iPads, Kindle Fire, on Macs and PCs. It wont be readableon the original e-Ink Kindle models, because there are so manypictures and examples, but the book will be available in thatelectronic format. Its almost a 400 page book, so its easier tocarry around in your iPad.Joe: I would like to thank the both of you, Mark and Joe, for theopportunity to interview you. This podcast will be available at theBusiness901 website and the Business901 iTunes store. Thanksto both of you.Mark: Thanks for interviewing us, Joe.Joseph: Thank you, Joe. Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901
  20. 20. Business901 Podcast TranscriptionImplementing Lean Marketing Systems Joseph T. Dager Lean Marketing Systems Ph: 260-438-0411 Fax: 260-818-2022 Email: jtdager@business901.com Web/Blog: http://www.business901.com Twitter: @business901 What others say: In the past 20 years, Joe and Ihave collaborated on many difficult issues. Joes ability to combine hisexpertise with "out of the box" thinking is unsurpassed. He has alwaysdelivered quickly, cost effectively and with ingenuity. A brilliant mind that isalways a pleasure to work with." James R.Joe Dager is President of Business901, a progressive company providingdirection in areas such as Lean Marketing, Product Marketing, ProductLaunches and Re-Launches. As a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt,Business901 provides and implements marketing, project and performanceplanning methodologies in small businesses. The simplicity of a singleflexible model will create clarity for your staff and as a result betterexecution. My goal is to allow you spend your time on the need versus theplan.An example of how we may work: Business901 could start with aconsulting style utilizing an individual from your organization or a virtualassistance that is well versed in our principles. We have capabilities toplug virtually any marketing function into your process immediately. Asproficiencies develop, Business901 moves into a coach’s role supporting theprocess as needed. The goal of implementing a system is that the processeswill become a habit and not an event. Business901 Podcast Opportunity Expert Status Lean Marketing Lab Engaging Front-Line Staff with Kaizen Copyright Business901