Can You Ignore Your Customers For a Week?

Since I’ve been moving into “lean healthcare” consulting, I am joining one of the healthcare management societies, analogous to an APICS type organization, I suppose. I’ll leave this group un-named.

As I was poking around their website, I clicked on the bookstore, to be greeted wth this:

Please mark your calendar! Due to our annual physical inventory no orders will be shipped January 5 through January 13, 2006. We will resume shipment on January 16, 2006. Thank you for your patience.

Wow, how un-lean. This organization doesn’t purport to be lean, but it’s hard not noticing the lack of customer focus that’s required to shut down for more than a whole week, due to their internal operations needs (a physical inventory). Most of us don’t have that luxury, do we???

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Mark Graban's passion is creating a better, safer, more cost effective healthcare system for patients and better workplaces for all. Mark is a consultant, author, and speaker in the "Lean healthcare" methodology. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent project is an book titled Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus.

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