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Goal Systems International
“Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™”
One of the most difficult aspects of introducing ...
Goal Systems International
“Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™”
I intended to stand at the wall with Barry and Al...
Goal Systems International
“Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™”
We didn’t complete the IO Map in that meeting, bu...
Goal Systems International
“Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™”
Using the Design Department’s actual IO Map, I wa...
Goal Systems International
“Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™”
This week I’ll spend time with Alan Morrison and ...
Goal Systems International
“Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™”
managers reporting to them¯an executive with more...
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Howto Promote the Logical Thinking Process (LTP) using The Norovirus Approach - EN

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Version Française ICI:
http://slideshare.net/seuils/howto-promote-ltp-norovirus-approach-fr

"Logical Thinking Process (LTP) - The Norovirus Approach"

How to propagate the Logical Thinking Process (LTP) using a viral approach, modeled on the Norovirus.

Original story reproduced by H. William Dettmer with permission from author, Ronald N. Woehr.
French translation by Paul Merino @SEUILS with permission from H. William Dettmer.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Howto Promote the Logical Thinking Process (LTP) using The Norovirus Approach - EN

  1. 1. Goal Systems International “Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™” One of the most difficult aspects of introducing new ideas, tools, or techniques in an established organization is securing the willing acceptance of something new among the organization’s members,both leadersandfollowers.The“not-invented-here” syndromecanbeapowerfulobstacle to overcome. It’s well known that force-feeding doesn’t work. The only viable alternative is attraction¯the idea that you can catch more flies with honey than with manure. And then you let the caught flies “infect” others with their enthusiasm, similar to the way a norovirus outbreak spreads from one passenger to another in the closed environment of a cruise ship¯but in a good way!. The story that follows illustrates the effectiveness of this approach. Ron Woehr is a project engineer in a large corporation on the U.S. east coast that designs and manufactures high-tech heavy industrial equipment for users throughout North America. Their output is several dozen units per year, and each one represents a complex project in itself. For more than two years, Ron’s division has been using critical chain project management (CCPM) with Concerto software to manage the production and installation of each product unit. For more than two years, Ron had been pressing senior management for approval to be formally trained in the Logical Thinking Process (LTP). He had become aware that CCPM was not realizing its full capability, and he saw the LTP as the key to determining the reasons why. Ron finally received that approval in August 2010. After completing the LTP course, he recounted this experience back at his workplace. “Hey! Take a look at this...” Using the Thinking Process to Elicit Participation and Create Consensus by Ron Woehr O ur top design manager is Alan Morrison. My boss is Barry West, who reports “dotted line” to Alan but is really part of the Business Management organization. Barry approved my Logical Thinking Process (LTP) training on the condition that I would train both of them when I got back. After Ireturned from the LTP training in August 2010, Iprinted the Current Reality Tree (CRT) and Future Reality Tree (FRT), the ones I created in Port Angeles concerning our CCPM implementation, on D-size paper¯22 inches by 34 inches. I taped them to the wall outside my office, along with the Design Department’s Intermediate Objectives (IO) Map and the Evaporating Cloud (EC) I had created (virtual drum vs. resource drum). I also posted a Prerequisite Tree (PRT) detailing the implementation tasks for one of the injections from the EC. As I prepared for Realization’s Project Flow Conference, I also prepared a number of CRTs and FRTs derived from lessons-learned presentations delivered in previous conferences by Ajai Kapoor, Realization’s lead CCPM expert. As I finished these trees, I posted them as well. The entire wall was lined with logic trees printed in large-scale. ©2010 Ronald N. Woehr Used with permission 1
  2. 2. Goal Systems International “Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™” I intended to stand at the wall with Barry and Alan and review the maps, but that never happened. However, a large number of other people stopped by to look at them and asked a lot of questions. One day a woman I’d seen frequentlyaround the office, but whom I’d never met, walked by the trees, heading for the restroom. She stopped at the wall and exclaimed, “That’s the Theory of Constraints!”Well, Iwasshocked.So, naturally,thatstartedadiscussion. Apparentlytheirmanager, Francine, had encountered the Theory of Constraints somewhere in her past and had brought it to the attention of the group. Apparently she did so well enough that one of her employees knew the logic trees were a Theory of Constraints tool. The woman who stopped by works in a group consisting of a manager and three professionals. They perform customer surveys, analyze and organize the results, and report areas needing improvement to the relevant organizations within our company. Subsequently, they asked me to conduct a three-hour training session for them. Initially I was a bit flummoxed. I told them that since they don’t execute or manage projects, don’t manufacture anything,aren’t part of the supplychain,don’t do accounting, and aren’t involved in healthcare, then many of the well-developed Theory of Constraints solutions to generic industry problems are not applicable. That leaves us with the principles and two sets of tools: the Thinking Process and the Five Focusing Steps. Since the first of the five focusing steps is to identify the constraint, I felt that we had to begin with an IO Map to characterize the business contribution their organization tries to make and then to identify what is preventing them from producing more of that benefit. It was obvious to me that it would be a pure facilitation session, since I had no prepared materials that were relevant to their business and, in fact, I had little knowledge of what they did. The manager of the group couldn’t make the first half of the meeting, so I spent some time orienting the group. On a flip chart, I began to list elements that I thought would be part of the IO Map. When the manager arrived, it became clear that her thinking was very mature compared with the rest of the group, so we quickly derived the Goal and Critical Success Factors (CSF) with her input. As you probably have observed many times, not everyone in the group agreed. That emphasizes the first important contribution of the IO Map: It starts the alignment discussion among members of the system being considered. Peter Drucker published The Practice of Management in 1954. In 1973 he updated that first book with Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices. In both books he discussed the importance of asking the question “What is our business?" The next question he says must be asked is, “What should it be?” followed by “What will it be?” Drucker suggests that you may find you’ve worked shoulder to shoulder with a colleague for manyyears, yet you each have completelydifferent answers to these questions. The IO Map offers a structured way to discuss those questions. ©2010 Ronald N. Woehr Used with permission 2
  3. 3. Goal Systems International “Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™” We didn’t complete the IO Map in that meeting, but the group took the flip chart with them and vowed to advance the effort and get back with me. That hasn’t happened yet, but another woman in the group stopped by for a long talk. She had told her husband (who also works at Siemens) about our meeting and now he wants to develop an IO Map for his organization, too. Over several weeks, many people stopped to read the trees. At the time there were no instructions on them explaining how they should be read, nonetheless people spent substantial time looking at them. I could overhear them explaining the meaning to each other, and getting it all wrong! But the important thing was that the entities were of interest to the readers. One evening, about 6:30 p.m., I was still at my desk. The manager of the original group, Francine, stopped by to talk. She began looking at my bookcase and commenting on the books. I discovered that she has followed a nearly parallel reading program to mine over many years. We certainly had a common basis for a discussion of management. A few days later Francine stopped bywith two other managers and asked me to discuss the logic trees, but by that time I had taken most of them down. Only two IO Maps and an Evaporating Cloud remained on the wall. I was preparing to add two more CRTs and two more FRTs, but they hadn’t been printed yet, so I had little material on the wall to use. Naturally, I started with what was there: the IO Maps. I pulled out the illustrations of the Third-Generation Thinking Process logic tree relationships from Dettmer’s 2009 TOCICO presentation (Tacoma, June 2009) and spoke from them. Third-Generation Thinking Process Because I’ve internalized what Dettmer said during my training and in his books, I was able to show on our actual IO Maps how you determine undesirable effects (UDE) for the CRT and the objective and requirements for the EC. ©2010 Ronald N. Woehr Used with permission 3
  4. 4. Goal Systems International “Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™” Using the Design Department’s actual IO Map, I was able to show how it focused on business results. Then I showed them five bullets from a PowerPoint presentation that has been prepared to “sell” our proposed reorganization. These five bullet-items guided the changes that were made. While they are certainly negative entities in the CRT, they are not really UDEs. I showed Francine and the other two managers that the negative entities were related to specific Necessary Conditions (lower down in the IO Map) that are not being adequately fulfilled. Since they were predominantly clustered under two of the three CSFs, it was actually the failure to achieve those CSFs and the Goal became the UDEs. At this point, I seized the opportunity to discuss the fact that in the Design Department, most managers focus on technology management, not business management. As a result, they didn’t automatically relate areas of poor performance to business results. I have what I think is a pretty good CRT, and a pretty good FRT, related to the proposed reorganization. I showed the managers where their efforts fit into the IO Map, but I also identified the broader systemic problems that must be resolved if we are to eliminate the negatives that the Design management staff identified. I warned them that the whole objective of the Theory of Constraints is to zero in on the most high-leverage actions, rather than chasing after every negative symptom. (Istayed on the conceptual level, since some of the information in these trees has not been made public yet.) The CRT has several magnitudinal “ands” in it, and I explained to them the difference between an ellipse and a “bowtie.” Iwas surprised and amused when Ifirst saw all these magnitudinal “ands,” because they show that a reorganization is more likely only to diminish the negative effects than to eliminate them. The bowties imply that additional injections will be required to get positive outcomes all the way to the desired effects (DE) at the top of the FRT. Without them, a reorganization is likely to fall short of its hoped-for benefits. This helped me explain to them that six additional injections beyond those created by the reorganizations would be required to turn the UDEs into DEs. I had previously explained to them that the cause-effect logic of the CRT had been scrutinized through rigorous tests for logic validity called the categories of legitimate reservation (CLR). So, at this point I said that, after completing the FRT, it would be necessary to check every cause-effect connection using the CLR. And after doing that, then every entity must be assessed to determine what possible negative effects could result in addition to the desired positive effect. By doing this, I had found five potential sources of negative branches. I showed them the developednegativebranchesandthelocations whereadditionalinjectionswouldbeneededto “trim” them. In all, eleven additional injections are required, in combination with the reorganization, if a robust solution to current performance problems is to be achieved. I then tied everything back to the IO Map, show them that the desired effects were worded exactly as the critical success factors¯or very close to them. ©2010 Ronald N. Woehr Used with permission 4
  5. 5. Goal Systems International “Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™” This week I’ll spend time with Alan Morrison and Barry West, examining the details of the CRT, FRT, and negative branch reservations. One dayI caught them looking at the trees on the wall, but they were really short on time. At that time, I only had time to wave the reorganization CRT and FRT in front of them, point out that additional injections are needed, and advise them that five negative branches need to be trimmed. That really piqued their interest, so I expect an interesting discussion when I get together with them. Meanwhile, I’m working with the Materials Design manager on an IO Map for his group. He’s basically trying to manage chaos at the moment and doesn’t see the underlying structure. The IO Map is forcing him to think it through. In addition, I’ve developed an IO Map for the Lead Drafter function in our organization. Ireally wanted to do this to fully define that job, because at the moment I don’t think the Lead Drafters and the managers agree on the job content. Lead Drafters are clearly the resource constraint for our project throughput. In a meeting with a group of Lead Drafters and the Drafting manager, I elicited where they are not fulfilling NCs of CSFs. I then developed a CRT to determine the source of the negative symptoms. One lead drafter has scrutinized it, but it requires more rigorous examination. The manager wants me to review it with him and his entire organization in coming days. If we open up throughput in that area, it will really improve our project completion rate. I laid in a supply of colored Post-it® notes, some bold markers, and some masking tape. Then I went to a conference room and ripped off some flip-chart paper. I’ve worked with a couple of people as a group to develop some new maps on that same wall outside my office. They really like being able to participate by writing the notes and moving them around for proper association with each other. They also liked the “stand up” nature of the exercise in the hallway. All of that points up the benefits of creating the maps “the old-fashioned way,” instead of through a software controlled by a single individual. Now I have a another request to work with an organization outside of the Design Department, to help them bring their chaos under control. (Once the dam broke, I started getting inundated!) Last week, the manager of that organization stopped and brought two people with her. She asked me to explain to them what was on the wall. We must have stood there for an hour. They were full of good questions, but Inow have good answers. I said that one critical root cause of the UDEs in the Design organization is: “Bias toward historical local practices has been permitted to persist.” (I told them the real root cause was “invertebrate management,” but I stopped the CRT one level above that!) Our company bought Universal Power 12 years ago, and both our US and foreign entities still defend their customs as best. As a result, we’ve never really integrated. It has led to a lot of negative entities in the CRT. After this interaction, I checked the organization chart and see who I’d been talking with. It turns out that one of them has eleven managers reporting to him, each of whom has two to four ©2010 Ronald N. Woehr Used with permission 5
  6. 6. Goal Systems International “Contructing and Communicating Common Sense™” managers reporting to them¯an executive with more than 50 people working for him. His parting shot after the discussion was, “Itook two things awayfrom this discussion. First, Ilove your passion for the subject. Second, you are focused on the right stuff¯business results.” The benefit of starting the discussion with a good IO Map! “And the hits just keep coming...” ©2010 Ronald N. Woehr Used with permission 6

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