Quality Progress - February 2014 - (Page 40)

3.4 PER MILLION BY MIKE CARNELL The 'Initiative' Olympic Games Coordinating events and creating a multifaceted plan to engage the entire organization IT SEEMS THAT the business world has are a series of competitions-relatively events and create a cohesive telecast of experienced a fairly rapid transition in fo- unrelated to one another-performed by the Olympic Games. cus to "innovation" as the next initiative or individuals who have perfected their skills the next big thing. Meanwhile, leadership in a relatively narrow range or a group are different, but it takes the combined teams wander the vast Serengeti Plain of of individuals or team members who efforts of many groups of individu- performance improvement. represent a country that may or may not als-among them athletes, trainers, the The jobs that these two groups perform be instrumental in fostering the level of Olympic Committee and country delega- jaded responses from middle managers performance these individuals or teams tions-for the world to view a world- who contend this is the new "flavor of the are capable of achieving. Of course, this is class Olympic Games broadcast. At this day" while they are left with the task of a metaphorical reference to the Olympics high performance level, you rarely see implementing it inside their silos. and not meant to criticize the event in any athletes arguing about the superiority of way. the sprinter over a distance runner, or This initiative wanderlust often elicits When managers refer to a new initiative of the shot-putter over a discus thrower. as the flavor of the day, they are really thinking about that widely used proverb, 'Initiative' games These petty arguments are typically made "This too shall pass." What is a proverb? In the history of what I'll call the "Initia- by uninvolved bystanders with a shallow According to Merriam-Webster.com, it's tive Olympic Games," we have exercised understanding of the overall product that defined as a belief that's generally thought a plethora of performance improvement is the Olympic Games. to be true or not necessarily what is really initiatives such as plan-do-check-act, total The job of management in business is true. Spreading that "flavor of the day" quality management, lean, Six Sigma, lean to behave as the TV network: Define the comment across an organization is the Six Sigma, the Shainin system, theory of ultimate objective of the game, and coordi- first step in marginalizing the new initia- constraints and ISO 9001, to name a few. nate many dissimilar activities and make tive before it even begins. Or we have combined some of these Looking back over the last two de- initiatives simultaneously with some that them come together to move forward. In other words, it's management's job cades, improvement initiatives executed fall outside of the realm of continuous to engage the entire organization-not in the business world seem similar to improvement: enterprise resource plan- just specific practitioners-into a cohesive watching the Olympic Games on TV. Both ning (ERP), supply chain management, multifaceted performance plan. Practi- low cost country while initiative trainers are like Olympic planning and various coaches and trainers. All these individuals dashboards. Change management and innovation / FIGURE 1 tioners perform similarly to the athletes, purchasing, hoshin pursue perfection within a very narrow As viewers of the Change management Innovation Search term Search term scope. They also must trust the organiza- Olympic Games, we Interest over time K J E A C in a successful Olympic Games. It doesn't and choose, purely Forecast News headline tion/TV network to do its job, culminating have the job to pick + Add term mean they can excuse an individual's poor driven by our own performance because the organization or personal tastes on network does not seem to be performing. which events are our IL average 2005 2007 Source: Google Trends 40 QP * www.qualityprogress.com 2009 I HG F 2011 favorite. TV networks D B 2013 Ability to change have a different role: In Jack: Straight From the Gut, Jack Piece together all of Welch offered great insight into how he these independent prepared General Electric (GE) to become http://www.Merriam-Webster.com http://www.qualityprogress.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Quality Progress - February 2014

Up Front
LogOn
Expert Answers
Keeping Current
Mr. Pareto Head
Learning From Experience
Choose Wisely
A Pathway for Patients
Hoist Help
3.4 per Million
Quality in the First Person
Measure for Measure
Career Corner
Statistics Roundtable
Standards Outlook
SPECIAL SECTION: Six Sigma Resource Guide
QP Toolbox
QP Reviews
Back to Basics

Quality Progress - February 2014

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