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Sharing both successes and failures is a key element of a continuous improvement culture. Here are some

key lessons that we’ve learned in the field

.
Order of Operations
Avoid training Belts who have to look for projects. Instead, identify problems...then projects...then people.
  • Identify issues when you’re setting your strategic goals, e.g. during early Hoshin planning steps.
  • Prioritize projects and select a limited number that can be sourced and completed with the targeted timeframes.
  • Match team members’ knowledge, skills and experience with specific projects.
Own It
Don’t force fit industry roadmaps if they don’t align with your approach. If your organization uses proprietary Lean project management tools or has developed its own process improvement vocabulary, reinforce your continuous improvement culture by creating custom project roadmaps. You can reinforce your unique distinctiveness and provide a systematic project management platform.
GPS for CI Projects
Guide project teams with a consistent template of critical questions. The most common questions should be developed for each phase of each project roadmap, e.g. Quick Improvement, A3, PDCA, DMAIC, DCDOV, DMEDI, IDOV. Doing so will focus teams on structured problem-solving and reduce the tendency to jump to solutions. The benefit is reducing the support needed from Master Black Belts and coaches.
Visual Project Management
Maintain a project environment of complete transparency by providing broad access to stakeholders across the organization. Project team progress and current reports are always available to view. Let champions, sponsors, and executives “pull” information on-demand without tasking team members with report requests.
Share the Knowledge
Create a library of Lean Six Sigma project examples for reference across the organization. Problem solving can be expedited by enabling teams to review previous A3 reports, root cause analysis, and results for similar projects.
MoreSteam Blog: Thoughts from Process Improvement Leaders
Recorded Webcasts: Program and Project Management