Sign Up for Telephone “Office Hours” with Mark Graban – To Chat About Lean & Improvement


Last week, I ran an experiment. I set up a two-hour block on Friday afternoon that I labeled as “Office Hours,” where followers on Twitter or LinkedIn (as I posted there) could schedule a 10- to 30-minute phone call to talk about topics like Lean, continuous improvement, healthcare improvement and such.

The goal is for both sides of the conversation to walk away with something we didn't know at the start of the call.

I only gave a few hours' notice, so I only had one person sign up. At least, I think it was a combination of short notice and it being a Friday afternoon.

But, I enjoyed the discussion that I had, so I'm willing to experiment again.

I've set up blocks of time on Thursday, August 10 and Friday August 11 — and future dates, see below…

Update: The office hours time slots are currently full, but I will try version 3 of this experiment in the future. I'm not sure what the best mechanism would be for notifying people about new office hours would be… suggestions?

Use the form below or click here if you'd like to schedule some time to chat.

Let's see how this version 2 of the experiment works out…

What do you think? Please scroll down (or click) to post a comment. Or please share the post with your thoughts on LinkedIn.

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  1. Terry Donahue Cousins says

    Mark, obviously the booking part of the experiment worked well…the sessions filled up while I was filling in the form :-) Our team would love to chat so, perhaps you can let us know if you get any cancelations. I will be on the look out for the next “experiment”. Thanks! Terry

  2. Mark Graban says


    One really good 20-minute discussion.

    Two no-shows.

    One person at least had the courtesy to email about 45 minutes in advance, asking to reschedule.

  3. Mark Graban says

    Today’s second day had similar mixed results:

    1) One cancelation earlier in the day (at least they emailed me)

    2) One no-show — I’m changing my process to send the automated reminder email 4 hours in advance instead of 30 minutes. That might help. I’m trying not to blame the no-shows.

    3) Had a great conversation with somebody I’ve known for a while who is working at a new hospital that is very new to Lean, talking about his thoughts on the strategy and approach for introducing people to Lean and building a culture.

    4) Nice chat with an engineer from Tunisia, who wants to switch from manufacturing into healthcare… and how to go about doing that?

  4. Joe Wells says

    I’d be interested in transitioning from manufacturing to healthcare as well. Any advice/thoughts/precautions/etc. would be appreciated.

    1. Mark Graban says

      I’ve opened up some time the next three Fridays…

  5. Mark Graban says

    Today’s report:

    Four people scheduled time. Two emailed me to cancel and reschedule, so I appreciate that courtesy. No no-shows this time!

    I wish I had a better “waiting list” mechanism other than posting about a cancelation on LinkedIn.

    I had two nice conversations with industrial engineers from Ontario and Wisconsin, both working in manufacturing.

    In both conversations, there was mutual learning, which is my goal for this experiment.

    More calls next week.

  6. Mark Graban says

    Two good conversations today on topics including patient safety, patient satisfaction feedback and how to turn that into improvement… the structure of internal PI teams, how to account for cost savings and other benefits.

    Two re-schedules… maybe a countermeasure is to not have people sign up so far in advance, the way schedules can change?

  7. Mark Graban says

    Three good calls today… one no-show. That seems to be the pattern.

    Lots of talk about healthcare improvement with two people who are already directly involved and one person who is looking to move from another industry… I’ll keep doing these… Sept 20 is the next date.

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