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Tag: Government

The Folly of Visual Inspection and the TSA

The Folly of Visual Inspection and the TSA

I’ve never been a big fan of the TSA or any form of visual inspection. I wasn’t a fan, either, of the automated x-ray technology that was used in (and then removed from) American airports while being banned in Europe over safety concerns. Relying on 100% human visual inspection doesn’t work because, well, we’re human. […]

Louisiana’s Online Suggestion Box Will Fail; Connecticut Lean Efforts Might Not

Louisiana’s Online Suggestion Box Will Fail; Connecticut Lean Efforts Might Not

I’m a critic of traditional suggestion boxes, since they are usually garbage cans for ideas. Boxes collect anonymous complaints (not good) and managers often ignore what’s in the box (not good either). I thought I had heard it all in terms of bad suggestion box practices, but here’s a new one. As described here, Louisiana […]

U.S. Presidential Limo Breaks Down Due to Fuel Filling Error in Israel

U.S. Presidential Limo Breaks Down Due to Fuel Filling Error in Israel

From today’s news: “Backup presidential limo on its way for Obama in Israel after fuel filling failure.” U.S. President Barack Obama’s trip to Israel was tripped up by a preventable error – the Presidential  limousine  was mistakenly filled with diesel fuel instead of gasoline / petrol. One of the limousines in  Barack Obama’s fleet has […]

Stuff I’m Reading, February 21, 2013: Transparent Errors, Hidden Gorillas, Gaming of Systems

Stuff I’m Reading, February 21, 2013: Transparent Errors, Hidden Gorillas, Gaming of Systems

It’s time again for a regular feature I call “Stuff I’m Reading.” I have too many browser tabs open and my Mac is bogging down (root cause of this?), so it’s time to share some links that I may or may not blog about more fully in the future. The president should make medical errors […]

By February 21, 2013 3 Comments Read More →
Please Don’t Steal THIS Idea – Paying a % Bonus for Cost Savings

Please Don’t Steal THIS Idea – Paying a % Bonus for Cost Savings

In the Kaizen approach, stealing the ideas of others isn’t a negative thing. If somebody else implemented an idea and you can use that idea in your area, a Kaizen organization ENCOURAGES the borrowing, stealing, adoption, and adaptation of ideas. There’s no shame in that. This idea was being preached at one hospital I visited […]

By February 15, 2013 5 Comments Read More →
A Lean Governor Inaugurated in Washington (State)

A Lean Governor Inaugurated in Washington (State)

Following up on my post from September on the Washington gubernatorial race (“Lean Management” Debated in the Washington Gubernatorial Race), the winner of the election, Jay Inslee, was inaugurated. His  inaugural  speech (full text in PDF) referenced the application of Lean to state government. From the speech: Today we begin a multi-year effort to bring […]

By January 22, 2013 9 Comments Read More →
Some Videos from the 2012 #LeanStartup Conference

Some Videos from the 2012 #LeanStartup Conference

It’s awesome that Eric Ries puts the video content from The Lean Startup Conference online each year. He’s just uploaded some videos to his YouTube channel, with more to come (including video of my “Ignite” session talk on Lean Healthcare Design). Here is the playlist with all of the 2012 talks. It’s all worth checking […]

By December 19, 2012 1 Comments Read More →
The Newtown Tragedy – Our National Response and Problem Solving

The Newtown Tragedy – Our National Response and Problem Solving

As are many people across the United States and around the world, I’m saddened by the violence that claimed so many lives Friday in Newtown, Connecticut at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The mass shootings that plague our country are incredibly upsetting. My friend Bob Emiliani created the graphic that’s shown at left, that represents our […]

By December 17, 2012 30 Comments Read More →

Lies, Damn Lies, and Vanity Metrics – in Policing and Healthcare

I arrived in San Francisco yesterday for the Lean Startup conference, where I gave my 5-minute Ignite format talk on the parallels between Lean hospital design and Lean startups – Lean is Lean. There will be video available of the talk online and I’ll share it when I can. Follow the #LeanStartup hashtag or @LeanStartup […]

By December 3, 2012 5 Comments Read More →
Stuff I’m Reading: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly in Healthcare

Stuff I’m Reading: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly in Healthcare

The list of stuff I’ve read and wanted to blog about has grown… that inventory becomes a post like this.  Here are links to some varied articles I’ve read recently that might be of interest on a number of Lean related topics, a grab bag of topics related to healthcare design, leadership, quality, and IT. […]

By October 17, 2012 2 Comments Read More →
Guest Post: Lean for Local Government – Pursuing Service Excellence

Guest Post: Lean for Local Government – Pursuing Service Excellence

Mark’s note: Thanks to all of the wonderful guest bloggers  who contributed to this space over the past two weeks. Today’s post is by Richard Steel, the COO of Kaizen Institute New Zealand and  Mijo Katavic, lean & innovation manager at the Rotorua District Council. By Richard Steel, with Mijo Katavic: One of the recurring […]

By October 12, 2012 2 Comments Read More →
“Lean Management” Debated in the Washington Gubernatorial Race

“Lean Management” Debated in the Washington Gubernatorial Race

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, with the help of Michael George, tried injecting talk of so-called “Lean Six Sigma” into the 2012 presidential race, but I think it was received as a bit of a novelty topic that illustrated the relative quirkiness of Gingrich. The state of Washington has been working to apply Lean principles […]

By September 18, 2012 6 Comments Read More →
For the Want of a Screwdriver…

For the Want of a Screwdriver…

This isn’t a story about my frustration with a State of Texas office… it’s mainly a story about a failed “kaizen”-style improvement attempt that a good-natured state employee would have liked to have made – but yeah, it would have made my life a bit easier. After seven years of use, I had to get […]

“Why Charter Schools Work” – Questions of Autonomy, Responsibility, Standardized Work & Results

“Why Charter Schools Work” – Questions of Autonomy, Responsibility, Standardized Work & Results

My mom is a retired public school elementary teacher, so I’ve heard plenty of stories about bad management decisions within a school system and other craziness that runs the risk of crushing souls… but thankfully my mom (and so many other teachers) are strong people and they can put up with it because their work […]

Even with “ObamaCare” Upheld, Much Hard Work Remains to Protect Patients and Make Care Affordable

The Supreme Court has mainly upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, including the individual mandate and other controversial provisions. The court did not throw out the entire law. Congress can no longer penalize states for not expanding Medicaid eligibility. Putting personal political preferences aside… as Lean professionals or quality improvement people, should our […]

Stuff I’m Reading: False Alarms, Fraud, Failures & two Good News Stories

Here are links to some more articles I’ve read recently that might be of interest related to Lean, systems, and improvement. The “good news” stories are the last two, of course… AIM: False STEMI activations lead to costs, inappropriate cath lab use – by comparison, ThedaCare, is fast AND accurate in its Code STEMI diagnosis […]

Not Exactly News – TSA Wastes Money

Not Exactly News – TSA Wastes Money

While the hurdles to systemic Lean healthcare transformation are high (see the payment system challenges discussed in John Toussaint’s new book), I am generally optimistic that we can significantly improve healthcare. I am, however, very cynical about attempts to apply much “Lean government” thinking (such as ASQ’s Paul Borawski’s earnest questions about government and quality). […]

Stuff I’m Reading, May 7, 2012: Nurses, Blame, Government, Apple in China

Here are links to some more articles I’ve read recently that might be of interest on a number of Lean related topics: Twin boys die after morphine overdose (understaffing, poor training, & other system issues) Two years on, gov’t says it’s Leaner  (Regina, Saskatchewan) Montreal nurses suspended over woman’s death during childbirth (only the nurses […]