Beware Of Integrity Loss

Many organizations are facing difficult times due to the financial crisis.  It is an easy temptation to get things out rather than get things right when the pressure is strong.  The integrity of your Lean journey may be lost if your approach changes drastically.

There are two basic philosophical ways to implement Lean in your enterprise: Coaching towards the solution or coaching towards the method (check out Mark Graban & Jamie Flinchbaugh’s excellent discussion for more on this).  If your approach has been to coach towards the method, think of the repercussions if you begin to coach towards the solution. 

  • The “learning organization” goal may be compromised when you do not allow people time to get a deep understanding of the problem
  • Change will not feel owned by those doing the work
  • Those that coach towards the solution may not have gotten their hands dirty (think of executives who don’t go to Gemba but dictate a solution)

I highly suspect organizations that already coach towards the solution will probably not switch to coaching to the method in a crisis.

This warning is just to ensure you use discernment before choosing to change your methods.  Understand that a temporary change of course can potentially bring you to an undesired destination.

If you liked this post, then try:

My 2009 Hansei: Scarcity inspires creativity and innovation.  How can I help harness that inspiration?

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Filed under Business, Gemba, Health Care, Improve With Lean, Problem Solving, Root Cause

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