Author Archive: Mark Graban

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 eBook 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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#TBT: Posts from August 20 in Years Past

#TBT: Posts from August 20 in Years Past

Facebook and their “On This Day” feature is helpful because the platform often reminds me of what happened on this day in years past. It’s often family photos, places I’ve been, or articles I’ve read. But, since my blog posts automatically feed into my personal Facebook page, I’m reminded of those posts too. read more

By August 25, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Bad Systems & Training, Weak Problem Solving, and Poor Supervision Cause Cancelation of NFL Pre-Season Game?

Bad Systems & Training, Weak Problem Solving, and Poor Supervision Cause Cancelation of NFL Pre-Season Game?

The cancelation of a meaningless NFL exhibition pre-season game is probably one of the least important problems in the world. But, it happened recently and the “comedy errors” is interesting to think about. You might notice the headline of my post. That’s not the way a problem like this is normally portrayed in the news. […]

By August 23, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Podcast #260 – Brad White, on Lean Daily Management for Healthcare

Podcast #260 – Brad White, on Lean Daily Management for Healthcare

My guest for Episode #260 of the podcast is Brad White, author of the recently-released book Lean Daily Management for Healthcare: A Strategic Guide to Implementing Lean for Hospital Leaders. He is currently a Senior Process Improvement Advisor at Grady Health System in Atlanta, but I first met Brad a few years back when we were both […]

By August 22, 2016 2 Comments Read More →
Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 15, 2016: Whiskey, Deming, Brazil & Kaizen

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 15, 2016: Whiskey, Deming, Brazil & Kaizen

Here’s the latest installment of “Key Tweets,” a weekly post that summarizes some of my tweets (or retweets) from the week, including pictures and other fun stuff. Follow [email protected] join the fun and the conversation. See the previous installments of Key Tweets here. If you’re reading this via email or RSS, you might get a better […]

By August 19, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Why You Shouldn’t Rely on Sticky Notes to Sell Cars or Improve Processes

Why You Shouldn’t Rely on Sticky Notes to Sell Cars or Improve Processes

As I occasionally do, I’ve written blog post for KaiNexus: For the Want of a System Better Than a Sticky Note, a Car Sale Was Lost I hope you’ll enjoy the post… not just me complaining about a car dealer (it was their loss, quite literally). But, I think you’ll appreciate the parallels to process […]

By August 18, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
The Time I Volunteered at a Distillery and Couldn’t Help Doing Kaizen

The Time I Volunteered at a Distillery and Couldn’t Help Doing Kaizen

One thing I enjoy is the opportunity to basically be a “value adding” worker in a process. The work is pretty repetitive (but, again, it’s a very enjoyable environment) and it lets me think like an industrial engineer or a “Lean thinker” when I’m not talking with…

RIP Jess Jacobs (#UnicornJess): The Healthcare System Wasted Her Time, But She Inspires Many to Fix the System

RIP Jess Jacobs (#UnicornJess): The Healthcare System Wasted Her Time, But She Inspires Many to Fix the System

A while ago, I found this blog post by Jess Jacobs about a hospital wasting her time. I think it was probably shared by our mutual friend, e-Patient Dave deBronkart. As sometimes happens around here, I find something really compelling and well-written and I forget to share it on the blog. That happened this time (although […]

By August 16, 2016 4 Comments Read More →
The One Where @TheNerdyNurse Talks About the Power of #Lean in Healthcare

The One Where @TheNerdyNurse Talks About the Power of #Lean in Healthcare

It’s one thing to hear Lean professionals or specialists talking about the power of this methodology to improve healthcare. To me, it’s not just theory, it’s something I’ve seen in practice. Sure, there are many engineers and former business people working in healthcare now, and I think that’s great for a number of reasons – bringing relevant […]

By August 15, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 8, 2016: Simpsons Memes, Hospital Errors, Etc.

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 8, 2016: Simpsons Memes, Hospital Errors, Etc.

Here’s the latest installment of “Key Tweets,” a weekly post that summarizes some of my tweets (or retweets) from the week, including pictures and other fun stuff. Follow [email protected] join the fun and the conversation. See the previous installments of Key Tweets here. If you’re reading this via email or RSS, you might get a better […]

By August 12, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Are These Bad Suggestions About Suggestion Boxes?

Are These Bad Suggestions About Suggestion Boxes?

I’ve written a lot about suggestion boxes, and usually in the context of how they don’t work well. Many aspects of traditional suggestion box systems sound great, but don’t work in practice. What doesn’t work: Boxes not being opened very often, being reviewed by a committee or executives…

By August 11, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
My Lean Healthcare Trip to China: Transitioning From Beijing to Shanghai

My Lean Healthcare Trip to China: Transitioning From Beijing to Shanghai

Continuing my series of blog posts about my July trip to China, today’s post is about the second city I visited: Shanghai. This post has some photos and descriptions of the high-speed train trip and other travel-related details. You can also read previous posts about the Lean healthcare conference that was held in Beijing on […]

By August 10, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Podcast #259 – Steve Bera, Reflections on NUMMI and #Lean, Part 2

Podcast #259 – Steve Bera, Reflections on NUMMI and #Lean, Part 2

Today’s episode #259 is Part 2 of a discussion I started with Steve Bera in episode #256. Steve was one of the original 16 “NUMMI Commandos” that General Motors sent to work with Toyota in the 1980s, as discussed in the outstanding book Comeback: The Fall & Rise of the American Automobile Industry. read more

Deming (Past) and Toyota (Today) Recognize Employees Are Unique Individuals

Deming (Past) and Toyota (Today) Recognize Employees Are Unique Individuals

I’m always happy to hear current-day Toyota leaders (like Jamie Bonini) or recent  Toyota leaders (like Gary Convis) share perspectives on leadership. It’s not that Toyota’s perfect, but we’re hearing about Lean concepts “straight from the source,” in a way. Here’s a recent LinkedIn article by Toyota’s Steve St Angelo. He was, at one point, the […]

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 1, 2016: Wine, Signs, Cards & Spoons

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 1, 2016: Wine, Signs, Cards & Spoons

Here’s the latest installment of “Key Tweets,” a weekly post that summarizes some of my tweets (or retweets) from the week, including pictures and other fun stuff. Follow [email protected] join the fun and the conversation. See the previous installments of Key Tweets here. If you’re reading this via email or RSS, you might get a better […]

What Do You (or Your ______) Like or Dislike Most About Your Hospital?

What Do You (or Your ______) Like or Dislike Most About Your Hospital?

This article caught my eye at Becker’s Hospital Review: We asked 13 physicians what they really think of their hospital Even though organizations do formal physician and staff satisfaction surveys, the questions posed here is one that we should ask people frequently (including patients) in the name of improvement. read more

What’s Up at Virginia Mason Medical Center? Top Rankings & Joint Commission Problems

What’s Up at Virginia Mason Medical Center? Top Rankings & Joint Commission Problems

I want to preface this post by saying it’s mostly about questions, not answers. I’ve had many readers and acquaintances ask me about what’s been going on at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle. The short answer is: “I don’t know, other than anything I’ve read in the news.” read more

Lean at UCLA Harbor Medical Center Featured by the BBC

Lean at UCLA Harbor Medical Center Featured by the BBC

The BBC radio program “The Science Hour” recently aired a program with a segment where an unexpected person (Dr. Kevin Fong) to an unexpected place (UCLA Harbor Medical Center) to look into “Lean.” You might remember UCLA Harbor from my 2014 blog post about their use of Lean to reduce waiting times for patients in […]

My Article on “Testing Lean Changes, Small or Large;” Recent Winery Visits

My Article on “Testing Lean Changes, Small or Large;” Recent Winery Visits

Thanks to Arena Simulation Software for asking me to write this article for their regular customer newsletter: “Testing Lean Changes, Small or Large“ The article is freely available to any reader: Two short excerpts from the article: “Lean is about teams and organizations working together in the continuous pursuit of perfection (even if we never quite […]