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Tag: Problem Solving

Video: Toyota Helps Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and Their Eye Clinic

Video: Toyota Helps Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and Their Eye Clinic

California week on the blog continues after yesterday’s post about Lean at San Francisco General Hospital. Today, I’m flying to Los Angeles to attend the 5th annual Lean Healthcare Transformation Summit. I will be, as usual, moderating the CEO panel and I will be, for the first time, moderating the Q&A session at the end […]

Kaizen Tip: Just Do Its and Root Causes

Kaizen Tip: Just Do Its and Root Causes

In the Kaizen process, we ask everybody to identify problems (or opportunities) and then to write down an idea that could potentially solve the problem (or at least solve it to some extent).  What’s written down on the card (or submitted into KaiNexus software) is the starting point for discussion within a team and/or with […]

Notes & My Short Talk from the #Lean Transformation Summit, #Lean14

Notes & My Short Talk from the #Lean Transformation Summit, #Lean14

It’s been fun attending the annual Lean Transformation Summit (produced by LEI). Today is Day 2. I took some notes from Day 1 and Tom Ehrenfeld has been “live blogging” it a bit on the LEI site. Tom also took and posted a picture of me in my spiffy “Lean Geek” t-shirt. LEI had a […]

Jumping to Solutions

Jumping to Solutions

We’ve all seen it. We’ve probably all done it. What’s that? Jumping to solutions. I hope this illustration I created gives you a bit of pause… not just to laugh at others, but to reflect on this personally. About LeanBlog.org: Mark Graban is a consultant, author, and speaker in the “lean healthcare” methodology. Mark is author […]

By February 25, 2014 4 Comments Read More →
The Truth About Data and PDSA/PDCA from a Toyota Publication

The Truth About Data and PDSA/PDCA from a Toyota Publication

Out there in the Lean and quality improvement communities, you sometimes hear some silly things. Sometimes, I want to attach the “Lean As Mistakenly Explained” (or L.A.M.E.) label to what’s said when it really seems off the mark from what Lean is really all about. Davis Balestracci, a columnist for Quality Digest, passed along something […]

By February 20, 2014 4 Comments Read More →
The Power of Asking “What Do You Think?”

The Power of Asking “What Do You Think?”

Mark’s post: I’m still away on vacation, but happy to have some guest bloggers, including Chad Walters. Unlike his past posts, today’s not about Lean in sports… and I think you’ll enjoy it. Obviously one of the most important questions we ask in the field of continuous improvement is “Why?” and for very important reasons […]

By November 1, 2013 4 Comments Read More →
From Vague to Passive to Active in Your Voice and Improvement Work

From Vague to Passive to Active in Your Voice and Improvement Work

While I’d be the first to admit that my writing is not perfect and I certainly need a copy editor for my books, I have a bit of a reputation as a “grammar cop” amongst co-workers in previous jobs. I even received a “mock awards” certificate from a team at Dell that said as much […]

By September 25, 2013 13 Comments Read More →
Don’t Let Looking at Data Blind You From Seeing Reality

Don’t Let Looking at Data Blind You From Seeing Reality

I recently read an article (a case study) about “Lean Six Sigma” in a publication. It’s not online, so I can’t link to it, nor do I really want to call them out by name. I didn’t like the article, in part, because it used the old, tired (and wrong) idea that “Six Sigma is […]

By September 10, 2013 18 Comments Read More →
Weekend Fun: An Example of Poor Problem Solving

Weekend Fun: An Example of Poor Problem Solving

Here’s a funny ESPN commercial featuring golfer Rickie Fowler. Fowler is pouring coffee, yet he makes some bad assumptions about which coffee is decaf and about the “milk” being bad (compounded by the joke that he’s supposedly color blind). I guess if there’s any Lean lesson, it’s that we can be at the “gemba” and […]

By August 30, 2013 7 Comments Read More →
Podcast #179 – Judy Worth & Tom Shuker, “Perfecting Patient Journeys”

Podcast #179 – Judy Worth & Tom Shuker, “Perfecting Patient Journeys”

Please upgrade your browser MP3 File (run time 29:31)   My guests for Podcast #179 are my friends Judy Worth and Tom Shuker, two of the co-authors of the book  Perfecting Patient Journeys, which was published earlier this year by the Lean Enterprise Institute. About the book: “Perfecting Patient Journeys  is a guide for leaders […]

Blame the Worker or the System – British Airways Engine Covers

Blame the Worker or the System – British Airways Engine Covers

I flew back safely from Finland on Saturday – or I should say British Airways and American Airlines flew me safety, including in the 747 pictured at left. 15 hours across three flights. It was a long day. But, I wasn’t really worried about my safety because of the great track record that the aviation […]

Lack of PDSA made JCP CEO SOL?

Lack of PDSA made JCP CEO SOL?

It’s been interesting to follow the rise and fall of former Apple retailing executive Ron Johnson during his less-than-two-year stint as CEO at long-struggling retailer JC Penney. Johnson was often cited as the genius behind the generally outstanding Apple stores, but his approach didn’t translate well into trying to fix a dying company… and he […]

Error Proofing Against Drinking Bad Tap Water at #HIMSS13

Error Proofing Against Drinking Bad Tap Water at #HIMSS13

Here in New Orleans, there was a problem with the city water today and there’s a 24-hour “boil water” order in effect through tomorrow morning. We could play a good game of the 5 Whys: Why can’t we drink the water? It’s potentially unsafe Why? The water pressure dropped earlier this morning Why? Because there […]

Dilbert Challenges the Root Cause Problem Solving of His Boss

Dilbert Challenges the Root Cause Problem Solving of His Boss

Last Friday’s Dilbert touched on the important topic of problem solving and root cause analysis. Stand up meetings, or huddles, are a great practice and they are pretty common in the Lean methodology. I saw a really impressive daily stand up meeting last week at a Texas hospital (more about that to come in a […]

By February 20, 2013 2 Comments Read More →
Perfecting Patient Journeys and PDCA

Perfecting Patient Journeys and PDCA

Reminder: Please take my reader survey and enter to win some Lean prizes. My friends at LEI have a new book out by Judy Worth, Tom Shuker, and Beau Keyte: “Perfecting Patient Journeys.”  The book appears to focus on Lean problem solving processes, including value stream management… really important stuff. Chapter 1 (PDF) has a […]

By January 31, 2013 0 Comments Read More →
Guest Post – Words Matter: Why I Prefer PDSA over PDCA

Guest Post – Words Matter: Why I Prefer PDSA over PDCA

Mark’s note — today’s guest post is by my  friend Karen Martin, my guest for Podcast #151 where we talked about her latest book The Outstanding Organization: Generate Business Results by Eliminating Chaos and Building the Foundation for Everyday Excellence. Karen is the founder of Karen Martin & Associates and she is also the co-author of […]

By January 22, 2013 41 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 →