Author Archive: Mark Graban

Mark Graban founded LeanBlog.org in January 2005. He is the primary blogger and managing editor of the site.

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Why don’t we do what we know we’re supposed to do? Why don’t I?

Why don’t we do what we know we’re supposed to do? Why don’t I?

It’s easy to point fingers at others who don’t do what they know they’re supposed to do. Why don’t those nurses and doctors properly clean their hands when they enter and leave every patient room? Why do some surgeons still maintain an intimidating environment in the operating room? Why do some managers or executives ignore […]

By February 11, 2015 6 Comments Read More →
Cartoon: The Workplace “Brain Check Station”

Cartoon: The Workplace “Brain Check Station”

Here’s my latest cartoon collaboration with a skilled artist (and medical assistant), Carrie Howarth. You can see the whole series via this link. How many organizations ask their employees to check their brain at the door? This certainly happened during my time at General Motors 20 years ago (and it had been happening for decades there). […]

By February 10, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
A #Kaizen Example from St. Francis: From “Flavored Snot” to Applesauce [Videos] – And a New On-Site Workshop!

A #Kaizen Example from St. Francis: From “Flavored Snot” to Applesauce [Videos] – And a New On-Site Workshop!

Here’s the latest video in the series that Joe Swartz and I shot at Franciscan St. Francis Health back in October. See them all here or via a YouTube playlist. In this video, the endoscopy nurses who previously talked about how “the culture is staff input” are back to tell a story about their favorite […]

By February 9, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of February 2, 2015

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of February 2, 2015

Here’s the latest installment of “Key Tweets,” a post that summarizes some of my tweets (or retweets) from the week. Follow me @MarkGraban. See the previous installments here. If you’re reading this via email or RSS, you might get a better experience by clicking through to the website because it will display article link previews, embedded photos, […]

By February 7, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
The “Productivity Paradox” of Healthcare IT and the ROI Paradox of Kaizen

The “Productivity Paradox” of Healthcare IT and the ROI Paradox of Kaizen

I’ve been reading a preview copy of the upcoming book (due out in April) by Dr. Bob Wachter, The Digital Doctor. It’s fantastic and provides a real-world, even-handed take on healthcare IT, including EMR/EHR systems. What’s the promise, what works, what potential is unmet, and what fails miserably? It’s a great read. I’ll be interviewing […]

By February 6, 2015 12 Comments Read More →
What Does ThedaCare CEO Dean Gruner, MD Say About Safety?

What Does ThedaCare CEO Dean Gruner, MD Say About Safety?

For today’s “Throwback Thursday,” I recently re-watched parts of a DVD I helped produce a few years back for the ThedaCare Center for Healthcare Value — Thinking Lean at ThedaCare DVD: Strategy Deployment, Alignment & Leadership. In the video, ThedaCare’s CEO, Dr. Dean Gruner, is talking about their “True North” objectives. First and foremost in that list […]

By February 5, 2015 6 Comments Read More →
Cool Stuff from KaiNexus – A Quiz, Video, Haikus, Webinar, and Blog Posts

Cool Stuff from KaiNexus – A Quiz, Video, Haikus, Webinar, and Blog Posts

Our team has been doing some cool stuff over on our KaiNexus website and I wanted to batch up the sharing of some of that content here. Should You Engage Your Employees In Continuous Improvement? [Quiz] I really loved this flowchart that was created by Maggie Millard, our Director of Customer Experience. It’s very tongue-in-cheek […]

By February 4, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Should You Engage Your Employees in Continuous Improvement?

Should You Engage Your Employees in Continuous Improvement?

Here’s a fun video that I created for KaiNexus, based on this clever flow chart. The answer, most always, is YES! If your employees are human and you really want to improve, you should engage your employees in improving safety, quality, customer satisfaction, and your bottom line. And KaiNexus can help. About LeanBlog.org: Mark Graban […]

By February 3, 2015 1 Comments Read More →
Politicians and Patient Safety: Bill Clinton, Joe Biden, and More [Videos]

Politicians and Patient Safety: Bill Clinton, Joe Biden, and More [Videos]

Healthcare has become very politicized in the U.S. (and in Canada and other countries). I think the patient safety crisis (and trying to solve it) is something that should be a non-partisan issue. Neither party wants patients to die from preventable medical errors and nobody has a vested political interest in defending the status quo. […]

By February 3, 2015 2 Comments Read More →
Podcast #214: Michael Ballé, Lead With Respect

Podcast #214: Michael Ballé, Lead With Respect

MP3 File (run time 42:37) Today’s guest is Michael Ballé, an author of many novels about Lean management, published by the Lean Enterprise Institute. He joins us for this episode from Paris (he shares many photos of “Paris moments” via his Twitter account @Michael_Balle). Michael and his father, Freddy, have collaborated on these books and have […]

By February 2, 2015 2 Comments Read More →
Random Super Bowl XLIX Lean-Like Moments – Katy Perry and GE

Random Super Bowl XLIX Lean-Like Moments – Katy Perry and GE

Following up my earlier post about the “Patriot Way…” During her halftime extravaganza (video), Katy Perry had a silver strap around her wrist, attached to the microphone. It reminded me of the Nintendo Wii strap that helps prevent throwing the controller (Update: I’m not the only one to think this and it might literally be a Wii […]

By February 1, 2015 2 Comments Read More →
The Patriots, Coach Belichick, Aspects of Lean Thinking, and Dr. Deming

The Patriots, Coach Belichick, Aspects of Lean Thinking, and Dr. Deming

Earlier this month, for the College Football Playoff championship game, I wrote about “Lessons from the Football Coaching and Leadership Styles of the Oregon Ducks and Ohio State Buckeyes.” I had found articles about both teams in the name of balance (and because both teams represented Lean-like thinking or new ways of doing things). I […]

By February 1, 2015 2 Comments Read More →
Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of January 26, 2015

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of January 26, 2015

Here’s the latest installment of “Key Tweets,” a post that summarizes some of my tweets (or retweets) from the week. Follow me @MarkGraban. See the previous installments here. If you’re reading this via email or RSS, you might get a better experience by clicking through to the website because it will display article link previews, […]

By January 31, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Audio Parody – “Lean Serial”

Audio Parody – “Lean Serial”

My wife and I were late to the wildly popular podcast “Serial,” but we listened to the first six episodes while traveling over the holidays. I ran hot and cold on the serialized non-fiction story about a murder… it was somewhat interesting, but a bit drawn out. The show requires a lot of patience (and […]

By January 30, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
#Throwback Thursday – “Lean Sigma” is Still Pretty Often Wrong on Lean

#Throwback Thursday – “Lean Sigma” is Still Pretty Often Wrong on Lean

Last weekend, at a patient safety conference, I heard a physician talk about “robust process improvement” and this, thankfully, included an endorsement of Lean methods. That’s the good news. The bad news was that the physician who was presenting trotted out what appeared to be a tired and incorrect framing of Lean and Six Sigma, […]

By January 29, 2015 14 Comments Read More →
Mark Graban Interviewed by Dr. Bob Wachter on Lean & Patient Safety

Mark Graban Interviewed by Dr. Bob Wachter on Lean & Patient Safety

I’m honored to have been interviewed by Dr. Robert Wachter for his “Web M&M” interview series on the AHRQ website. In Conversation with…Mark Graban, MS, MBA Dr. Wachter is a leader in the patient safety movement who I’ve respected and admired for quite a while. You can read his “Wachter’s World” blog and his book Understanding […]

By January 28, 2015 3 Comments Read More →
Looking back at the Toyota Tsutsumi plant tour, part 2

Looking back at the Toyota Tsutsumi plant tour, part 2

Last week, I wrote a post (part 1) looking back  at our visit to the Toyota Tsutsumi factory that was part of our Japan tour that took place two months ago now. See previous posts in this series. I’m going to try to do one post a week on this topic. If you’re in San Francisco, I’m giving […]

By January 27, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Webinar Previews: Lean is All About People? Leadership Behaviors for Kaizen

Webinar Previews: Lean is All About People? Leadership Behaviors for Kaizen

Tomorrow afternoon, I’m doing two different webinars that I hope you’ll want to sign up for. Even if you can’t attend live, I’d encourage you to register in advance so you can get links sent to you automatically to view these on demand. Both webinars will be recorded and links will be sent out to those who registered. […]

By January 26, 2015 1 Comments Read More →