Ryan McCormack’s Operational Excellence Mixtape: March 26, 2021

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Thanks as always to Ryan McCormick for this… there's always so much good reading, listening, and viewing shared here by him!

News, blogs, articles, resources, and links about creating value, continuous improvement, innovation, and leadership.


Healthcare – Creating Value for Patients

It actually happened.  Ontario is finally pulling the plug on fax machines in healthcare, and public service.  

How to Set Up an Efficient Covid-19 Vaccination Site.

Here's a concise video of the insights of the pandemic on the future of the healthcare system by the president and CEO of SSM Health

Operational Excellence

Operations is the heart of any organization.  We rely on operations to deliver on the promise to the customer.  Yet leading and optimizing operations remains stubbornly focused on mathematical analysis and detached efficiency calculations.  It's time to put people at the centre of operations.  

Once More: What is Strategy Deployment, and Why Should You Care? Wisdom from Pascal Dennis, author of one of my favorite books, Getting the Right Things Done.  

“We're too busy too improve.  We're in crisis mode.”  Heard all too often from operational leaders in the middle of the firefight, all the while failing to see that establishing a basic lean management system would help greatly. Lean as Crisis Intervention

Invest in automation or people?  Both. A Paradox No More: Investing in Automation and People.

The pandemic has reminded us all that Governments Must Become More Agile.

Incrementalism is good.  3 Main Reasons Why Big Technology Projects Fail – & Why Many Companies Should Just Never Do Them.

Leading & Enabling Excellence

“The frustrating thing is that we have known for four or five decades what attributes we should be selecting for… and yet we don't do it”.  ‘Failing up': Why some climb the ladder despite mediocrity.

Lean practitioners are familiar with the Shewhart cycle or PDCA loop for learning and improvement, but it's not a terribly helpful mental model for quick decision-making.  Try the OODA Loop: How Fighter Pilots Make Fast and Accurate Decisions

Adam Grant explains Why Thinking Like A Scientist Is Good For You

Coaching – Developing Self & Others

The easiest person to fool is yourself.  We often delude ourselves with fanciful stories that lead to overambitious plans and, eventually, burnout, stress, disappointment, and disillusionment.  Be kinder to yourself and be more realistic about the time you have.  

Give Up Bossing, Take Up Coaching: You'll Like the Results

Books, Podcasts, Videos

Books I'm currently reading:

I pre-ordered Daniel Kahneman's new book Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgment.  I can't wait. Thinking, Fast & Slow is such a classic that this can't miss. 


Podcasts I'm listening to:

I often struggle to make myself understood to others.  Tom Henschel shares some valuable tips in Coaching for Leaders episode 518 – The Way to Make Sense to Others.

I'm always excited to listen to inspirational leader Billy Taylor.  Here he is on BMS Connecting the Dots episode “if you make people visible they will make you valuable”.


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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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