Skip to main content

How do you define 'complete' for your projects and production activities?

At first glance you might be thinking that this is an obvious question to answer for your business.

Over the years I have come to realise that many people try to tick things off their 'to do' list early, just to get the feeling of achievement from having them ticked off.

I see the same effect taking place when businesses report internally (and even externally, in some cases) on the progress of projects and production.


In some businesses this means:
  • Ignoring the final production stages, declaring production to be complete when a key point in the process has been reached.
  • Ignoring the wrap up of projects, again declaring their completion when a 'tipping point' in the project has been achieved.
From my observations these declarations are made when there is a feeling of safety within the business at these points; it is felt that the outstanding work can be mopped up somehow. At these points the customer (again, internal or external) is then told what they want to hear.

I witness businesses who time and time again fail to deliver their products and services using the above strategy.

They are often never really late, but they are late nonetheless.

So, how do you get out of this situation, should you find yourself in it?

Here are some points for you to consider:

  • Clarify the reporting that takes place in your business about when a project / production is complete.
  • Accept the facts and don't try to sugar coat them. If a project is running late then it is late. Period.
  • Figure out what is, or isn't, happening in your business to create the situation of missing delivery dates.
  • Create an action plan to resolve the issues in your business, as identified above.
  • Come clean with your customers about real delivery dates.
  • Re-schedule your order books if you cannot recover the situation.
  • Ensure that you have a robust reporting system, and scheduling approach, going forward so you minimise the chance of this situation from re-occurring again.

Taking the 'blood, sweat and tears' out of on time delivery is always a challenge, but one that can be achieved.


All the best,

Giles



Free On Time Delivery Improvement Guide
If you would like some simple continuous improvement ideas to help your business improve its on time delivery performance then sign up for my monthly email update and get a copy of my guide 'You're Late!!!'.

To get your copy enter your email address below:


Email Address*



* Rest assured that I will not sell, or share, your details.

Popular posts from this blog

Want more time for your projects? Try the 'Hour of Pain'!

Do you find your day being broken up by interruptions, stopping you from getting on with your work?

Continuous improvement projects often fall foul of this. The day can become so inefficient through the constant stopping and starting that we only just seem to have enough time to get the 'day job' completed.

I was in a meeting last week where this same issue cropped up. It also cropped up today. It's nothing new, but it is still a pain in the rear!

So, let me share with you an approach that has worked for my clients - the 'Hour of Pain!'.

Where there is a (performance) gap there is a concern

I had a really good day yesterday working with a client's team.

The team has issues. Plenty of issues. Some are managerial issues, some are people issues and some are production issues.

When I first met the team they didn't know what to do with their issues, so I started by helping them to see more issues.

Issues everywhere, they didn't seem very impressed.

And then we captured the issues as 'concerns' into the tried and tested 'concern cause countermeasure' format and followed the process:

Concerns probed for root causes and root causes converted into countermeasures.
Soon they realised that some of their root causes dealt with numerous concerns and they gained momentum.

Yesterday we pulled another one of their processes apart and identified all of the gaps. The gaps became concerns and we fed them back into the process. Now they have a practical action plan (of countermeasures) to upgrade the process in question.

What do you do with your performance gaps? …

Free Continuous Improvement Guide

I have recently published a new free guide, with the title:
Six Quick Tips to Help Continuous Improvement Deliver Results Faster In the guide I share how to:
Use the continuous improvement cycle properly.Get projects moving, if they are slow to start or have stalled.Identify the 'biggest bang for your buck' when reviewing opportunities.Determine the level of change you need to achieve through your improvements.Flip staff grumbles and concerns into positive improvement actions.Increase the overall rate of progress on your projects. All of the tips are highly practical and are no-cost strategies.
To get your copy, just click on the button below and access the guide in just a few moments from now.



Enjoy reading,

Giles
About the author Giles Johnston is a Chartered Engineer who specialises in helping businesses to grow and improve through better business processes. Giles is also the author of Business Process Re-Engineering and creator of the 'Making It Happen' continuous i…