152 4 Lean Six Sigma makes problem solving exciting


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Is there a difference between Lean Six Sigma projects and 'just projects'? Yes, actually many big advantages in favor of the Lean Six Sigma approach.
Here I describe knowing by seeing, working on what matters and creating a sense of excitement for your teams.
Second in a series of executive-level messages.

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152 4 Lean Six Sigma makes problem solving exciting

  1. 1. presents the Executive Education Series Why Lean Six Sigma is better than ‘just doing projects’ 10/19/2013 152-4 Copyright fkiQualityLLC 2012 1
  2. 2. Lean Six Sigma makes problem solving exciting Written by Francisco Pulgar-Vidal, fkiQuality fpulgarvidal@fkiquality.com 10/19/2013 152-4 Copyright fkiQualityLLC 2012 2
  3. 3. Lean Six Sigma projects are vastly different from typical, everyday projects,
  4. 4. and can be much more exciting to be a part of, than most other things at work.
  5. 5. Here is why,
  6. 6. Lean Six Sigma projects explore and discover important work problems,
  7. 7. and then make work better for the long term.
  8. 8. See how next.
  9. 9. IDEA ONE: To solve a problem, explore the current work situation.
  10. 10. Teams following the Lean Six Sigma way go to the place of work,
  11. 11. …that is, where problems happen, to gain insights into the work.
  12. 12. The place where work is done is known as ‘gemba.’ You may see ‘gemba’ written as
  13. 13. Going to the gemba lets you see what is the problem in its context.
  14. 14. Observing makes you smarter about the problem, because you are open to what is happening.
  15. 15. But assuming you already know everything around you, does not.
  16. 16. Is this vastly different from before? Yes, because you start with observations, not assumptions.
  17. 17. IDEA TWO: Careful observation leads teams to identify the real problem.
  18. 18. Do you remember the most important instruction before a test? ‘Read each question carefully.’
  19. 19. In the same way, before you start solving, you must formulate the problem correctly.
  20. 20. Have you ever worked on the wrong problem? Who hasn’t?
  21. 21. For instance, this happens when a problem is formulated as a solution.
  22. 22. The following are actual problem statements. Can you see anything wrong?
  23. 23. These are solutions already!
  24. 24. Based on assumptions like...
  25. 25. Assumption: Train users and they will follow procedures.
  26. 26. Assumption: People are always ready to embrace new rules.
  27. 27. Assumption: To eliminate shipping errors, use a longer form.
  28. 28. Assumption: More pressure will make things better.
  29. 29. We make these assumptions all the time. Are assumptions always right?
  30. 30. When we jump ahead from assumption to solution,
  31. 31. we may face several project setbacks.
  32. 32. Jumping to a solution orients the team to deploy only one thing, which could be insufficient or just wrong.
  33. 33. Jumping to a solution stops the team’s search to find the true reason for the problem.
  34. 34. Jumping to a solution reduces your effort to find a real solution.
  35. 35. So, you could be working on the wrong problem.
  36. 36. By not jumping ahead to a solution, Lean Six Sigma teams work on the right problems.
  37. 37. This is vastly different from everyday work.
  38. 38. IDEA THREE: Going to the gemba and working on the right things sparks energy and innovation.
  39. 39. In the gemba, you learn what is really happening.
  40. 40. Nobody can tell you how things are because, you have been there.
  41. 41. This is great because you can avoid false starts.
  42. 42. As an employee, false starts make you feel annoyed and unproductive.
  43. 43. As a manager, false starts make you waste resources.
  44. 44. Over time, the worst waste is the loss of interest and creativity of the associates.
  45. 45. Can you afford this loss?
  46. 46. On the contrary, working to solve things that matter,
  47. 47. make you feel that your day-to-day also matters.
  48. 48. This makes for teams filled with energy and desire to innovate.
  49. 49. This is much better than how most teams feel everyday.
  50. 50. In summary, Lean Six Sigma projects focus on what matters and bring back discovery and innovation to the work.
  51. 51. Next presentations will discuss: • What you should think about when thinking of lean and six sigma. • How lean six sigma and project management go together. • In which way lean six sigma projects go deeper than other efforts. 10/19/2013 152-4 Copyright fkiQualityLLC 2012 53