Skip to main content

Five Words to Improve Productivity

At one of my clients I have been running a shop floor improvement project to create a new manufacturing cell with the apprentices.

I think that there is always some good learning to be had from improvement projects and I was keen to expose the apprentices to some additional experiences.

However, the last few weeks of the project have not been going to schedule and not wanting to miss the learning potential I asked them what they had learned about implementing a project of this nature.

They summarised the discussion that we had as being:


I wanted them to summarise the discussion as these key 'words' / phrases might stick in their heads a little longer and help them to avoid the same pitfalls in the future. I can't fault the words that they chose and the team nicely linked them together as indicated in the sketch above. I have summarised their comments as follows:

Planning
Good planning is essential and in particular having accountability and realistic target dates.

Teamwork
Working together as a team means spending time together and working on the same things at the same time... not working as a group of individuals.

Communication
Taking the time to discuss what is going on, what we're stuck with and clarifying that we understand what we need to do.

Co-ordination

Finding ways to complete our tasks at the right time, with people inside and outside of the business, so that we can take the least amount of time to implement the change.

Swift Decisions

Taking ownership of the decision and accepting responsibility for making a decision. Slow decision making kills the pace of a project.


I'm pleased to say that we then applied these words to our current state of play and a revised implementation plan was created. In the last week I have seen more progress than in the previous six weeks.

The apprentices nicely summarised the problems they have witnessed on this project and I hope that you can find some use for the list in your own business.

Better planning, more effective teamwork, improved communication, co-ordinated activity and swift decision making... that sounds like a good recipe to me!


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 improvement toolkit.

Download my free guide 'You're Late!!!' and improve your productivity and on time delivery performance today.
Click here to get your guide.

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…