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This is Broken = This is Waste

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Seth Godin at Gel 2006 on Vimeo

I really enjoy Seth Godin's writing, his books (including this one I recently read: Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us) and blog posts. His presentations are outstanding too. In this talk, he outlines some reasons why things (services, products, and experiences) are “broken.”

As a lean thinker, you might see this all as “waste.”

Why are things broken? One of seven reasons, Seth says:

  1. Not my job
  2. Selfish jerks
  3. The world changed
  4. I didn't know
  5. I'm not a fish
  6. Contradictions
  7. Broken on purpose

Not a fish?? See the video to see what he means:


Seth Godin at Gel 2006 from Gel Conference on Vimeo.

Seth points out many ideas related to Lean — including the fallacy of siloed thinking (not seeing the whole system), the failure to see the root cause of a problem, and the willingness of people fight the exact same battle every day instead of fixing the system.

On his blog this week, Seth pointed out the presentation (from 2006) and how things are still broken today. Sigh.

Have fun surfing the now-defunct “This is Broken” blog. What are your favorite broken examples? I see things that are broken every day. The curse of a lean thinker.

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent book is an anthology titled Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus. His next book, to be released in 2018, is Measures of Success.

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