Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Human Side of Lean: 2006 Planning Session


The help our customers succeed in implementing a Lean Enterprise by providing them knowledge on the Human Side of Lean.

Our Customer:
Anyone who has chosen to champion or implement Lean” techniques.


To develop tools and/or a road map that Lean implementers can use.
These would be jump started using a previously developed mind map as well as ideas brought up in this session and future sessions.
Some suggested ideas were:
A road map to succeed tool.
A culture categorization tool.
A culture measurement tool.
A tips and tricks tool for implementers.
A management methods tool.
A behavior profile tool. (Or use an existing ie. Myers Briggs, DISC etc.)
A “How to create challenging meaningfull work” tool.
An engage the workforce tool.
An assessment tool for hiring.

To create a rapid response team
The idea was to use the groups knowledge to problem solve stalled implementations.

To present at conferences or write articles
Perhaps based on some of the developed tools.

Just a test message ...
(Karen, may I suggest that youcreate an URL on the home page that directs people to comment separate from commenting upon the two entries on the home page. I thought that my earlier comments were lost until I hit comments next to your name. How do we get a spell check attached.)

As promised in the e-mail, here are some further thoughts on creating something usefull.

Mike Shaffner, if you have a strategy plan, then copy/paste it to this blog so that we have something to start from.

As we all know, if there isn't a detailed plan posted to follow or to shoot holes in, we're going to continue to spin our wheels.

Remember, our boss didn't want us to come to his office 'bitchin' about something unless we'd thought through what we wanted as a solution. From there, our boss had a point of reference. He would accept our proposal or ask us to modify it. Just stating a problem isn't going to cut it with Management and it won't cut it amoung us.

So, Mike, Pual, Craig, if you have something for us to look at, let's see it.
Since we have been working on the cultural and leadership side of lean for a long time, we have already done some of this. We have developed a cultural assessment tool, a roadmap tool, management methods tools. We are also doing some research with a professor in human resource development on some basic supporting HR practices such as profiling for hiring, reward and recognition and internal development. We are going back to a blank slate, truly approaching it from a research standpoint, however, so those HR practices will take some time to develop. Just thought I would share what those of us have done when working down this track. Thanks.
In our conference calls, an earlier designed "Mind Map" was mentioned. Could we get this copied/pasted into the blog or at least a reference to it?

Following Jamie's comment and work: Would it be possible to get access to your work, so we might be able to not invent the wheel again?

Marry Christmas & and a Good Start of the New Year 2006!

As per Juergen's request - Here is a text version of the first "Mindmap" created by Paul Parent during one of our discussions back in 2004. Paul summarized this info verbally during our call just prior to Christmas, 2005.

Discussion Summary: Identifying strategies to support the objective
cf call HS lean 8-3-04.mmp - 8/4/2004 - v14

Organizations struggling with a sustainable lean implementation or having
experienced a failed attempt to implement lean have not firmly established a
culture of continuous improvement using P -D -C - A (Plan, Do, Check, Act).

Develop a culture of continuous improvement by fully integrating the human side of lean with Lean Tool Applications.
"How can we make our jobs easier safer more rewarding?”

1. Engage the workforce
• appeal at the emotional level
• tap creativity of the workforce
• empower them to try - allow them to fail - free them to succeed
• challenge + control + commitment
• provide meaningful work – exciting - support individual growth
• provide relevant training and application opportunities

2. Solicit suggestions enterprise –wide (“How can we make our jobs easier, safer, and more rewarding?”)
• shop
• target management methods
• no stones left unturned
• Quick and Easy Kaizen

3. Cultivate leadership
• don't forget follower-ship
• empower not control
• respect for people – the "golden rule"
• enable people to try and fail as they pursue success
• develop and communicate vision

4. Get management engaged – all levels

5. Use behavioral talent profile
• appreciate differences as strengths
• screen for deviant behavior
• screen for desired behavior/attitudes/character
• Socio-technical analysis

6. Employ implementation methodologies congruent with existing culture

I believe Mike Shafner was going to try to integrate and update based on our last cal in December.
Comments from Juergen Boenisch:
(based on Mike Shaffner’s proposal below and other thoughts…)

I am referring to Mike Shaffner’s excellent draft “Human Side of Lean: 2006 Planning Session” (original at end of document) and checked previous notes, comments, ideas, etc. I think it is well structured and the list of possible strategies sounds good. Maybe we can get the list of tools into a framework, e.g. in order to prioritize the individual importance.

Also, many of these tools do already exist to a certain degree and might only need to be adapted to our framework.

Over the years much work has been done in numerous “individual” areas supporting Lean implementation and we have access to many experts in our group with lots of experience & expertise. Based on some recent comments, we should not try to invent “the wheel again”, but we also should not “jump to conclusion” just because it seems so obvious (following one Toyota principle).
Since the TPS seems to be the most efficient enterprise philosophy currently available, we should also not loose sight of the principles, or we should even commit ourselves to just use the TPS as our guideline and benchmark for whatever we try to do. I think indirectly we are doing it already, so let’s stick to it.

I think we need to start with the “helicopter view” and to group the subject in a minimum number of groups, not more than 4-5. At this stage the subject itself should not be limited to “Human Side of Lean” since e.g. we might find that the technical Lean tools could be used as vehicle to piggyback the Human Side.
TPS tries to keep everything extremely simple and easy to communicate. It rewards progress not reaching a goal. It honors alternative scenarios not only the best solution. It might be possible to follow the 80/20 rule and to define the vital view, essential points incl. the corresponding ideal goals, but than to go back and look at progress steps, easy to follow.

In the following I tried to draft a grouping with 4 headlines and some comments underneath:

1. Business Strategy: Vision, Mission, Objectives, Values, …
- Everything must start at TOP! Even if it’s only a brief verification
- Assessment or verification of “right” strategic environment/conditions/setup present
to even start Lean journey
- Overall enterprise assessment, if necessary, e.g. SWOT
- Current business culture: Current e.g. assessment tools
- Management methods & style: Current and ideal
- Required logistic for Lean implementation, e.g. program organization, available
resources, time, management support, timeline, program charter, communication
- Hidden agendas, problems, past approaches, critical areas, …
- Other relevant “overall” aspects
- …

2. Business Processes: Operation & Improvement
- Classical application for Lean Six Sigma tools
- Determination and definition of “what are the processes”, e.g. prioritization
- Stable & standardized best-practice processes
- Leveled Production
- Detailed process documentation, best practice
- Discipline & consistency in executing step-by-step improvement approaches
- …

3. People Engagement: Inside & outside of the enterprise
- What makes it fun to work here, e.g. incentive system, goals, communication
rewards & recognition
- Highly motivated and engaged people who do the right things naturally
- Respect for people, teamwork, and production as “only” place were value is added
- Continuous improvement – “Kaizen” and Learning  Don’t think about your job,
but how to improve it
- Methods and techniques to engage people, e.g. directive vs. non-directive, asking vs.
asking, providing the right information
- HR development, training, involvement, empowerment, challenge, no layoffs, …
- Enlarge technical process improvement approach for engaging people?
- Profiling for hiring
- Clear goals, Metrics, measures, incentives, logistic of communication, etc.
- Creation of “right” environment to “pull” new culture into place
- …

4. Infrastructure or Hardware: IT, equipment, equipment, building, surrounding…
Business Culture (I don’t know where else to put this…)
- Assessment of current culture necessary? If yes, how?
- Long-Term enterprise philosophy, incl. Genchi Genbutsu,
- Thinking beyond individual concerns to the long-term Good of the company
- Relentless reflection – “Hansei” -> There is always a way to do things better
- Decision made slowly and by consensus, thoroughly considering alternatives and
than rapidly implementation
- etc. etc.

Some thoughts about the proposal:
Regarding Mission:

I like Jack Welch’s definition of a Mission:
It is the answer to the question: How do we intend to win in this business?
Or may be more appropriate for the SME Human Side of Lean:
How do we intend to successful support our customers/members?

I would like to see the mission extended to cover the technical tools, at least to a certain degree. The reason as mentioned above: The technical tools might turn out to be a useful vehicle to piggyback the Human Side.

What about the
To effectively support our customers in implementing a sustaining Lean Enterprise by providing knowledge and practical expertise on Lean Six Sigma tools and on the Human Side.

Regarding the customer definition, I wonder if we should broaden it to include “interested in”, e.g.
Our Customers:
Anyone who is interested or has chosen to champion or implement a Lean Enterprise.

To 1: To develop tools and/or a road map …
As mentioned above, the strategies sound good. It might be of help to group them into a framework in order to prioritize and start working on them.
One question: Will it be possible to develop one tool to change the environment to “pull” the new culture into place? Or could it be a combination of the well know technical Lean Six Sigma Tools and a certain People Engagement approach?

To 2: To create a rapid response team
I like the idea of a “The SME Support Team for Companies in serious Trouble” or “Rapid Response Team” (do we need a SME Helicopter and what about flying in from Canada ). We do have so much expertise in our rows to being able to do this, just by getting our head together and being able to “openly” discuss the issues. I think it is worthwhile a try, but we need to establish a certain infrastructure first. For instance, we probably need to have a “Response Committee” evaluation the case to see if it might qualify. When in comes to discussion and real project work we should agree on a standard web-video conferencing platform in order to more effectively exchange information. Actually we should start using it in our weekly convergence calls, too. It’s even more fun than we have already now….!
The enumeration for this service needs probably some additional thoughts. I think we as members of the group need to offer our service free of charge (beside expenses). SME however could charge interested members for it and could use the money for certain application, e.g. for charities or other directly related chapter support.

To 3: To present at conference or write article
Based on several comments, I think it is our duty as SME group to bring something on paper. So let’s agree on a systematic approach.
Let’s clarify our mission and our strategy, categorize by a limited number of “headlines” and let’s group the approaches by headline. Than we can prioritize based on importance & relevance before we collect all the existing related work, data, and results.
At the risk of being labeled a "troll" or "scold," I'd like to suggest a couple things.

All these comments are interesting and useful. On the other hand, the summary or meat of the argument would make an excellent post and then the details could be a link. So doing, a reader of the blog can get the gist of the discussion. The really interested reader can get to the detailed expositions by drilling down via the link.

Don't get me wrong, the comments section provides an excellent running commentary on the original topic. It also can drift off into some great off topic stuff, but... , the casual or first time reader usually scans the blog, not the comments. That casual reader would miss the impact of your detailed comments.

Karen has structured it so most of the tech group can "post" AND "comment."

[Sermon ON]This makes a blog a different structure and more flexible than a discussion thread. The game is to link. Links are the equivalent of attachments to emails. The difference is that your server may fire up an html page or download the pdf/doc. The page visitor can decide how much detail they need.

When you "post" it provides both an abstract and a hook to get the reader to look further.[Sermon OFF]

BTW; My blogger ID is Piquero, most of your know me as Igor, and officially I'm Bob Rowen.
Juergen asked me to post this:
Historical development of comments:
• Jan. 10, 2006 Conference Call, 2nd mission confirmation
• Jan. 3, 2006 Conference Call, 1st mission confirmation
• Start: (based on Mike Shaffner’s proposal below and other thoughts…)

2nd Agreement on clear Mission statement answering “Why SME Human Side of Lean Tech Group Exists”
“To support our customers in implementing a sustaining Lean Enterprise.”

Our Customers:
In last call on Jan. 10, 06 the extension to “interested” was brought up, suggestions so war:
• “Anyone who is interested in implementing the Human Side of Lean.”
• “Anyone determined or interested to champion or implement a sustaining Lean Enterprise.”

Rest is unchanged to last summary
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