Throwback Thursday: Presenting #Lean to Senior Hospital Executives

throwback thursday lean blogThe concept of “Throwback Thursday” is very popular on social media platforms, especially when it comes to people sharing old pictures. Yes, that’s me as an infant there. No, I probably wasn’t criticizing a lack of “external setup” or a lack of “standardized work” in the way my parents changed my diapers.

Now that my blog is turning 10 years old, I plan to highlight (um, recycle?) some old content that newer readers might not have seen before.

August 2015 will also mark ten years since I shifted from manufacturing into healthcare, so I’ll be reflecting on that.

I was going through some old materials that I created and used when I was part of the “ValuMetrix Services” consulting group within Johnson & Johnson that worked with hospitals, medical labs, and other healthcare organizations.

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I found a PowerPoint deck that I used when one of our managing directors and I had a chance to give a presentation to a hospital senior leadership team. This was in early 2006, I believe.

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Two things jumped out at me… Here is the first slide where we talked about “what is Lean?” at a very high level:

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It’s not a 100% complete describe of what Lean is (why this was capitalized as LEAN, I’m not sure), but I think it’s all accurate. We were trying to head off any misperceptions that executives might have, such as associating Lean with layoffs and cost-cutting or thinking that Lean is a bunch of tools that can get implemented quickly. It’s a long-term journey.

I also used this slide, which I haven’t used or thought about in a while, talking about ways that Lean might fail (I had a small blog based on the book How to Prevent Lean Failures, done with permission of the author).

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Which of these failure modes are the most prevalent, would you say? Keep in mind this was a book focused on manufacturing (And it’s one I read when I still worked in industry).

I think these same risks or problems still exist in healthcare, don’t you?

If you have any “Throwback Thursday” reflections of your own that you’d like to share as a guest blog post, please contact me.

Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please scroll down to post a comment. Click here to be notified about posts via email. Learn more about Mark Graban’s speaking, writing, and consulting.

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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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