Tag: Problem Solving

Marie Osmond and The Excuses for Not Getting Lean

Marie Osmond and The Excuses for Not Getting Lean






Hear Mark read the post (subscribe to the podcast series): I don’t normally pay too much attention to TV commercials, but I was working out the other day and had TV streaming through my iPhone. Appropriately enough, a Nutrisystem ad with Marie Osmond started playing. I wouldn’t have really watched the ad, but the app froze […]






By January 10, 2017 2 Comments Read More →
#TBT: A Year of @KaiNexus Webinars, January through June, on Various #Lean Topics

#TBT: A Year of @KaiNexus Webinars, January through June, on Various #Lean Topics






One of the things I do for KaiNexus is produce and host our monthly free webinar series. You can view all of the recordings from the past few years via our on-demand library. They are also available via YouTube and this playlist. As we enter the last month of the year, I thought I’d look […]






By December 1, 2016 1 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 →
Coming in August… A New Event in Wisconsin: “Skillsfest”

Coming in August… A New Event in Wisconsin: “Skillsfest”






My friend, fellow Lean practitioner, and fellow MIT LFM/LGO program graduate Jason Schulist is organizing a new event that I wanted to share with you. Skillsfest is being held in Appleton, Wisconsin, which is a great town to visit in the summer. Here’s what Jason shared via email (and allowed me to share here): read more






Recording: Free Webinar with Jon Miller on “Practical Problem Solving”

Recording: Free Webinar with Jon Miller on “Practical Problem Solving”






On Tuesday, I hosted, via KaiNexus, a webinar with Jon Miller on the important topic of “Practical Problem Solving,” a structured 8-step method for solving problems. I wrote a blog post about this for the KaiNexus blog, previewing the webinar and summarizing the steps of the PPS method: read more






By January 8, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Maybe We Should Call it “The Many Whys” Instead of “The Five Whys” in #Lean & #LeanStartup

Maybe We Should Call it “The Many Whys” Instead of “The Five Whys” in #Lean & #LeanStartup






There’s no magic about the number five. I’ve seen some people write that five is somehow a “magic number.” No, that’s not really the case. Ask why more than once, probably more than twice…











By November 18, 2015 7 Comments Read More →
Just Ask Why Five Times? Effective Problem Solving for #Lean or #LeanStartup Doesn’t Start or End There

Just Ask Why Five Times? Effective Problem Solving for #Lean or #LeanStartup Doesn’t Start or End There






We don’t just ask why. We start by properly defining and clarifying problems. Jumping straight to Five Whys is like jumping straight to “Learn” in the Lean Startup Build-Measure-Learn cycle.











By November 17, 2015 9 Comments Read More →
Stuff I’m Reading September 2015: Urgency, Problems, and Lemmings

Stuff I’m Reading September 2015: Urgency, Problems, and Lemmings






Reminder: I’m giving a free webinar tomorrow, through KaiNexus: Bridging the Gap: How to Turn Ideas into Improvements September 10 from 1 to 2 pm EDT Now to today’s post: As is often the case, I have too many open browser tabs full of articles that I was going to potentially blog about. This slows down […]






By September 9, 2015 1 Comments Read More →
Gemba Academy Podcasts – Jon Miller on “Practical Problem Solving”

Gemba Academy Podcasts – Jon Miller on “Practical Problem Solving”






If you’ve got time over the weekend (or in the near future)… about three hours to be precise… these three four podcast episodes from Gemba Academy are outstanding and they’re well worth the time. Jon Miller, former CEO of Kaizen Institute, and co-author of the book Creating a Kaizen Culture: Align the Organization, Achieve Breakthrough Results, […]






By August 17, 2015 1 Comments Read More →
A Lean Guy Reads the Boston Papers: Facts, Respect, and Baseball Fan Risks

A Lean Guy Reads the Boston Papers: Facts, Respect, and Baseball Fan Risks






My wife and I were in Boston over the weekend, as it was her fifth reunion from her MIT master’s program. I’m also an alum, but was considered a “guest” since I graduated 16 years ago from my program and you don’t have to have an MIT degree to know 16 divided by 5 is […]






Cartoon: There’s A Time & A Place to Fight Fires

Cartoon: There’s A Time & A Place to Fight Fires






Here’s my latest cartoon collaboration with a skilled artist (and medical assistant), Carrie Schurman. You can see the whole series via this link. In the Lean world, we talk a lot about how “firefighting” is bad in an organization. What do we mean by that? We mean people are putting out proverbial fires all day, reacting […]






By January 9, 2015 4 Comments Read More →
What Are Your New Year’s Lean Resolutions for 2015? What Problems Are You Solving?

What Are Your New Year’s Lean Resolutions for 2015? What Problems Are You Solving?






Happy New Year! Let’s talk about Lean. Let’s talk about Kaizen and continuous improvement and how to get better in 2015. You’re possibly thinking, “Hey, Mark, chill… watch some football… relax… it’s a holiday.” But, you’re reading this, so you must be as excited about the new year as I am. read more






By December 31, 2014 3 Comments Read More →
Bringing Me Problems is OK, We’ll Find Solutions Together

Bringing Me Problems is OK, We’ll Find Solutions Together






It’s a bit of a modern management cliché to say “Don’t bring problems! Bring me solutions!” I think what that means is “Don’t just complain! Think about improving things!” It’s good to think about improvement, but sometimes (if not often!) that improvement process starts by identifying problems. read more






By December 15, 2014 8 Comments Read More →
How Engaging Everyone in Kaizen Saves this Hospital Leader Time Lots of Time

How Engaging Everyone in Kaizen Saves this Hospital Leader Time Lots of Time






A few weeks back, I posted the first new video from my Healthcare Kaizen co-author‘s health system: “Endoscopy Nurses are “Kaizen Crazy” at Franciscan St. Francis Health!” Today’s post includes the second video and, as I add new ones, you can view the whole series here on the blog or via a YouTube playlist. read more






By December 2, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Is “The Jerk” Good at Problem Solving?

Is “The Jerk” Good at Problem Solving?






Four years ago, I parodied the style of GEICO commercial that they were running at the time with a “did you know that Steve Martin’s character from The Jerk was bad at 5S?” The other day, I was thinking about the scene in the movie where Navin R. Johnson (Martin’s character) was working at a […]






By November 21, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Guest Post: Organizations are Solving Problems; Are They Workarounds or Real Improvements?

Guest Post: Organizations are Solving Problems; Are They Workarounds or Real Improvements?






Mark’s note: Today’s post is a guest post by my friend and colleague Isaac Mitchell. We’ve crossed paths at conferences, including the annual Society for Health Systems conference, where he shared some of their great work on Kaizen that’s being done at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital. Hopefully we’ll see you there in February with keynote […]






By November 6, 2014 7 Comments Read More →
Why Lunch Can Be Annoying at the Sensei Cafe

Why Lunch Can Be Annoying at the Sensei Cafe






Last week, I published my first cartoon collaboration with a skilled artist (and medical assistant), Carrie Schurman. You might call that cartoon “Strategy Dog-ployment.” None of us expect this to be a weekly thing, but sometimes you strike when inspiration hits. Here is our latest collaboration, the “Sensei Cafe.” read more






By August 27, 2014 6 Comments Read More →
3 Ways to React to Human Error

3 Ways to React to Human Error






What happens when a mistake is made in your organization? How do you react when an error occurs? A lab specimen gets mislabeled. The wrong product is shipped to the wrong customer. A patient is injected with the wrong medication. These are moments that matter. Does emotion take over or do we stay calm? How […]