Operational Excellence Mixtape: October 12, 2018


Healthcare – Creating Value for Patient

CMAJ summarizes how to improve the quality of healthcare in Canada.  Nothing new here, which begs the question – what are we waiting for?

Intermountain Health in Utah has a reputation for creating value for patients, even if it sometimes results in short-term revenue loss, according to inspirational CEO Dr. Marc Harrison.  Intermountain continues to solidy its reputation by investing in a state of the art innovation centre.

“Most health care organizations are still managed in a traditional autocratic style that does not allow for much worker input. The manager or leader makes most decisions and tells everyone what to do. Problems that arise are not managed expeditiously at the front line by people who understand the work. Instead, the problems pile up on the manager's desk — and most aren't solved. ” 

John Toussaint, MD

John Toussaint with a new article on getting real results by changing leader behaviour with a lean management system. 

Engaging individual patients as a source of critical healthcare data can help “activate” patients and improve their care. “Health care leaders must transform the traditional paternalistic approaches to embrace data from more dialogic or collaborative relationships with patients, where even lay people in need of medical care are recognized as resourceful and capable”. 

Diagnostic AI is making inroads.  Some AI technologies can now perform unaided diagnosis with high levels of accuracy. 

Operational Excellence

Innovation is such a buzzword it's becoming religion.  Innovation is not the holy grail.  It is time to move from innovation as ideology to innovation as process.

When you're starting a lean transformation do you start with tools or culture? The answer is “yes“.

The unenlightened continue to focus on speed and quantity to improve performance.  Seth Godin reminds us that you are more productive looking at “loading and unloading”

You may lament the impediments to innovating in your organization – but they're probably addressable excuses rather than real impediments.

For many, takt time is a radical concept for managing production.  Michael Balle discusses why.

We're lousy at multi-tasking and we're in a world with endless distractions..  Getting into a “flow” state requires time, focus, and isolation from distractions –  Innovative teams or individuals need to isolate themselves to achieve best results, according to Steven Kotler.

Tom Peters condenses 52 years of his #1's into one list of 18.

Leading & Enabling Excellence

Dr. Julian Birkinshaw, a professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at the London Business School, discusses how to delegate without micromanaging.

Many leaders demand loyalty and a “with me or against me” mentality.  The best leaders encourage dissent. 

Sheryl Sandberg believes ruthless prioritization is key to running a successful business.

Are you providing enough clarity on purpose to your staff?

Coaching – Developing Self & Others

Could you get as much done in a 6 hour day as an 8 hour day? Research suggests you would be just as productive by shortening the work day.

The Johari Window is a great coaching technique and method to elicit questions and provoking discovery.

Books, Videos, Podcasts

There are different kinds of problems, so it follows that there should be different methods to solve them.  Art Smalley's new book Four Types of Problems explores the strengths and limitations of the different methods.

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Ryan McCormack
Ryan is an operational excellence professional with over 18 years experience practicing continuous improvement in healthcare, insurance, food manufacturing, and aerospace. He is an avid student of the application of Lean principles in work and life to create measurably better value.


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