Tag: Six Sigma

Gemba Academy Visits Franciscan St. Francis Health to Learn #Lean & #Kaizen

Gemba Academy Visits Franciscan St. Francis Health to Learn #Lean & #Kaizen

Our friends at Gemba Academy produce some really nice online Lean education materials. It’s a subscription service, but you can see some free videos on YouTube. As part of their “Gemba Live” series, host Ron Pereira visited Franciscan St. Francis Health in Indianapolis. That’s the hospital, of course, of my Healthcare Kaizen co-author Joe Swartz. read more

It might be too late to get “Buy In” by the time you bemoan the lack of it

It might be too late to get “Buy In” by the time you bemoan the lack of it

Another question I get thrown at me very often is something along the lines of “How do we get more buy in for ______” with that space being filled with Lean, Kaizen, 5S, using the EMR system, improvement, or any number of terms. If you do a Google search for Lean “lack of buy in”…

By February 9, 2016 4 Comments Read More →
How Failed Lean Implementations Are Like a Bad Home Theater System

How Failed Lean Implementations Are Like a Bad Home Theater System

Alternate title: “Lean is an Integrated System. Of Course Just Implementing Pieces Leads to Failure.” Throughout the 10 years that I’ve been involved with Lean healthcare efforts, I’ve heard multiple stories of organizations that ended their formal Lean initiatives. They do so, as I’ve been told, because they need to cut costs…

By February 1, 2016 4 Comments Read More →
“Practicing Lean:” Starting Out with Six Sigma

“Practicing Lean:” Starting Out with Six Sigma

Today’s post is an excerpt from the collaborative ebook project Practicing Lean. I wrote the first two chapters of the book and then asked others to contribute their early stories about mistakes and lessons learned.

By September 14, 2015 5 Comments Read More →
Podcast #229 – John Dyer, Reflections on Deming, Six Sigma, and More

Podcast #229 – John Dyer, Reflections on Deming, Six Sigma, and More

My guest for episode #229 is John Dyer, president of his consulting firm, JD&A, Inc., and a contributor for IndustryWeek.com. John started his career at General Electric and later moved to Ingersoll-Rand, where he was VP of Operations for their Security and Safety sector. John had the good fortune to learn directly from W. Edwards […]

By September 8, 2015 0 Comments Read More →
Podcast #222 – Erin S. DuPree, M.D., FACOG, Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare

Podcast #222 – Erin S. DuPree, M.D., FACOG, Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare

Joining me for episode #222 of the podcast is Erin S. DuPree, M.D., FACOG, the Chief Medical Officer and Vice President for the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare. Dr. DuPree is an OB/GYN by training, was previously the Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs at The Mount Sinai Medical Center in […]

Guest Post: The one thing Lean Six Sigma got wrong about Lean

Guest Post: The one thing Lean Six Sigma got wrong about Lean

Mark’s Note: Today’s post is a guest post by Erwin van der Koogh, who comes to us from Australia. The thoughts and opinions here are his, although I agree with enough of it to publish it here. I’ll be participating in the discussion via comments and I hope you’ll join in. By Erwin van der […]

That Moment When You Realize a Potential Client CEO is a Deming Disciple

That Moment When You Realize a Potential Client CEO is a Deming Disciple

Many healthcare organizations are non-profits. They provide some “community benefit” in terms of charity care (as do for-profit healthcare organizations). Then, there are healthcare organizations that are very charity focused, where providing free care and social services is their primary mission. Some of these organizations even refuse to accept payment from insurance companies or the […]

Run Fast if You Ever Hear This Phrase from a “Lean Six Sigma” Instructor

Run Fast if You Ever Hear This Phrase from a “Lean Six Sigma” Instructor

I sometimes torture myself by watching webinars given about “Lean Sigma.” I hear a lot of claptrap about Lean… things that are just demonstrably wrong. These aren’t differences of opinion. These are statements that are factually incorrect and can be proven as such. If you ever hear somebody say some variation of this phrase: read […]

Things That Make Me Worry About My Colonoscopy: Patient Safety

Things That Make Me Worry About My Colonoscopy: Patient Safety

Sorry to get all Katie Couric on you, but I’m going to have a colonoscopy on Friday. I turned 40 last October and I have some family history that leads my doctor to get one done now rather than at 50. Unlike Katie, I won’t be broadcasting mine live, but I’ll share some articles and […]

What Lean is Lacking: Disco Medallions?

What Lean is Lacking: Disco Medallions?

When we lament why Lean hasn’t been more widely embraced as a new management model in healthcare (or other industries, for that matter), it’s good to ask “why?” We can identify gaps and propose countermeasures that might help solve this problem. As much as I believe that benchmarking isn’t as useful as many think it […]

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 →
Parallels and Learning Between Aircraft Engine MRO and Human Healthcare

Parallels and Learning Between Aircraft Engine MRO and Human Healthcare

My wife is a leader in a business (not GE) that does aircraft engine “MRO” work – maintenance, repair, and overhaul. I’ve been able to visit her shop floor (her “gemba”) and we noticed similar parallels between their work (bring engines back to prime “health”) and what’s done in healthcare. This parallel was also explored […]

Lean Sigma = Lean Plus Six Sigma or Six Sigma With Just a Little Lean?

Lean Sigma = Lean Plus Six Sigma or Six Sigma With Just a Little Lean?

I had a conversation recently with a healthcare quality leader about her excitement about Lean. She said that she wanted to learn more about Lean and wanted to get certified. She then added, “I thought I’d get Lean Sigma certified, because then I’m getting both [Lean and Six Sigma].” read more

Podcast #187 – Joe Swartz, Co-Author of the “Healthcare Kaizen” Books

Podcast #187 – Joe Swartz, Co-Author of the “Healthcare Kaizen” Books

Please upgrade your browser MP3 File (run time 32:10) Joining me for episode #187 is Joe Swartz, my friend and esteemed co-author for our books Healthcare Kaizen: Engaging Front-Line Staff in Sustainable Continuous Improvements and The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen: Leadership for a Continuously Learning and Improving Organization. You can learn more about our […]

By September 26, 2013 1 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 →
Guest Post: Lean and Six Sigma (and My Son) Require Skills-Based Learning

Guest Post: Lean and Six Sigma (and My Son) Require Skills-Based Learning

Mark’s Note: Today’s guest post is by Joe Swartz, my co-author for the book Healthcare Kaizen and the newly-released book The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. I’m hoping Joe will be a regular contributor in the future and I’ll be doing a podcast with him soon (update: listen here) about his experiences at the Franciscan […]

My Article on Lean Healthcare, Employee & Patient Safety in QHSE Focus

My Article on Lean Healthcare, Employee & Patient Safety in QHSE Focus

QHSE Focus, an iPad magazine, asked me to contribute a piece on Lean healthcare. They published my piece titled, “Employee & Patient Safety: The Only Moral Place to Start with Lean in Healthcare.” You can read a PDF of the article, thanks to the publishers at QHSE Focus. The PDF also contains the table of […]