4 Steps for Small Daily Investments [from the archives]
What do you do when one of those little fires pops up? It’s not a big deal, it’s just a small problem. Put the fire out, move on to what’s next. After all, there are many important projects to complete. But of course, before you get to them, another fireRead More
Did You Decide or Determine Your Solution?
There are many ways that lean thinkers look to signal that true problem solving has been pursued. These are a sort of litmus test for genuine versus fake lean efforts. Some of these are about artifacts, such as “show me your A3”, and some of these are about language, suchRead More
The Value of Transparency in Product Development
We’ve already covered the value of both granularity and cadence. Along with that must come transparency, as, without it, all the information flow, connections, and ability to problem-solve has less value. First, transparency is a precursor to trust (or is trust required to have transparency? Well, it works bothRead More
Solving Complex Problems: Systems First, or Individual First?
Some problems in your organization permeate so thoroughly that you don’t know where to start. The problem statement usually starts with something quite broad, and of course, must be broken down to be solved. However, some of these large and complex problems are so invasive that the perspective we startRead More
Lean Whiskey [Episode #18]
In Episode 18, Mark Graban and Jamie Flinchbaugh return to our tried and true format of “just the two of us”, although that won’t last long as Mark will soon have a guest co-host and then we will record an episode live as part of the Colorado Lean Network Summit.Read More
Throw Away Your Favorite Lean Tool
Whether it’s problem-solving, or kaizen, or process optimization, or waste elimination…no matter what you’re trying to accomplish, you must have a firm understanding of the current reality. This doesn’t mean just the results, but the process or work or causes that lead to those results. Every lean thinker understands this.Read More
Working on the Very Big Problem [from the archives]
This article first appeared on JFlinch on 10-12-09. Problems will always be with mankind, read as Jamie asks some basic yet key questions to help you get to the root of your problems. Do you have a starting point for your strategic plans? A very short post today, butRead More
Problem Solving the Whole or the Pieces?
I’ve always considered Russell Ackoff one of the most persistent and insightful systems thinkers. While sometimes his ideas are elusive for organizations to grab ahold of (I don’t always agree with his conclusions), he expects better from organizations, and I think those ideas are worth delving into. As I prepareRead More
Innovation is Inefficient Problem Solving (even Simon Sinek says so)
Innovation is about solving real problems. It does NOT require that you solve the problem in a unique or imaginative way. It really is all about solving problems. To be fair, if you don’t solve it in a unique way, then that innovation might not be a competitive advantage, orRead More
Would You Cut Off Your Hand to Improve Your Problem Solving?
This article originally appeared on IndustryWeek. I’ve been rereading, in greater depth, Art Smalley’s book Four Types of Problems. Art and I first worked together about 25 years ago on the transformation of Chrysler. It went from near bankruptcy to the most profitable company in the industry, until it wasRead More