Bosses in love with claptrap…


The Observer | Business | Simon Caulkin

Here's a provocative column from the UK.

A few lean-type thoughts:

“It's no use putting good people to work in a crappy system; conversely, putting people in a good system and expecting them to improve increases their individual and group capabilities.”

In the lean mindset, it's better to take good people and put them into a great system. Most systems rely on great people to be heroes. Good people are much easier to find than great ones.

“Incentives do incentivise – but be careful what you wish for. As W Edwards Deming said, people with sharp enough targets will probably meet them even if they have to destroy the company to do so.”

The article talks about managers falling for half-truths and claptrap. I hope managers aren't falling for “easy lean” half-truths and “you can change your culture in 13 weeks” claptrap. I think “claptrap” is British for “B.S.”.

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Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


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