Skip to main content

Focus on one thing when you are trying to make improvement projects happen.

We have so many pressures on us at times to improve. Trying to make progress becomes one of the most important things we have to do.

There can be so many opportunities too. A myriad of ideas that we could get our teeth into.

So, why do many of us get limited results?

In many cases that answer is a lack of focus. Our time dissipates, our energies diffuse and our results are left lacking.

And if that is the case, for many of us, then the solution can be straightforward:

  • Pick one. List out your opportunities and rank them. Do it by whatever makes sense to you and your business, but rank them. There can only be one number one!
  • Put the other options on the shelf. Make sure that there is nothing that you need to do now with any of your other options before you focus on job #1. If there is something you need to do, do it so that your attention can be focused on completing your chosen task. Make notes if you need to, so that you can pick up the project quickly later.
  • Apply your focus. Get rid of the other distractions surrounding your delivery of this project, to the best of your ability.
  • Deliver. Every day, move your project forward.
  • Gain momentum. As you make progress, and hopefully enjoy the journey, embrace the natural increase in momentum as you start to see results.
  • Complete. Check your results, plan your follow up and ensure that you have done a top job.
  • Repeat. Go back to the start of this list and choose what your next project will be.
If you're feeling a little lost with your projects then trying the above for a week or two, to prove it to yourself, might be the right thing to do.

What do you think?



Giles Johnston
Author of Business Process Re-Engineering and creator of the 'Making It Happen' online course for discovering simple change management strategies.

Popular posts from this blog

Kaizen improvements need to be specific

Do you find that your Kaizen improvements don't always go to plan? If you do, then you're with the majority! Whilst there is great deal of 'trial and error' there is a simple approach that can help. Available from Amazon Being specific about critical parts of your improvement can uplift your results. So, how do you go about doing this? The most direct route is to be clear about which parts of your improvement are critical. From here you can explain, in detail, what you want for those items. This might take some practice as many of us have become lazy in this regard. We take it for granted that our team 'get us' and will know what they need to do. If you ever feel that something basic is missing from an improvement ask this question: "What does good look like?" The answer should put you back on track. About the author: Giles Johnston is a Chartered Engineer who specialises in helping businesses to grow and improve through better business processes and

Where to start with Kaizen, if you just aren't sure

Kaizen is a great word. It is a word that can unleash the potential of both a business and an individual. Kaizen means more than just continuous improvement. It is a word that is linked to: Confidence Growth Exploration Courage Many people I speak to, that are new to improvement projects, aren't sure if they are on the right path when it comes to embracing the spirit of Kaizen. If you are also one of these people then let me share with you a few thoughts that can help you feel at ease about starting and leading change. Start with your concerns A great place to start your improvement life is with anything that isn't right. Getting your concerns out into the open really is the first step for most of us. If you aren't happy with something, raise it. This isn't only a great place to start, but something that you shouldn't give up. Whenever a standard is not being met, or not even defined, get vocal and then do something about it. Start small The intention of Kaizen is

Stimulating Kaizen opportunities - the 'mechanical' way!

I often end up in conversations about how to stimulate Kaizen ideas and opportunities. If you have read my other posts, you will know that I split the improvement journey into two halves. For many people, the initial Kaizen focus is all around fixing things that are wrong / not working properly. Once you get past this point you need something else to focus and motivate you to generate improvement opportunities. The two halves of the Kaizen journey The discussion that I often end up in, is the one around the imagination quandary. People talk to me about not being creative, or not being inspired to come up with improvement ideas. Do you ever feel this way? It seems that there is a popular view that some people are creative and some aren't. Great Kaizen ideas are not just the product of 'creative' people. There are lots of ways that you can generate improvement ideas without having to sit on a mountain top cross legged waiting for inspiration. Finding a 'mechanical' w