Skip to main content

What is an action (that helps improve business performance)?

Action boards are an integral part of effective team meetings.

Constantly capturing actions to remove obstacles from the day to day operations, identifying small improvement opportunities and avoiding having to 'remember to remember' tasks really can help a team to perform at higher levels.

However, the other day I was asked a question - "what is an action?"

I have never had to really think about this topic, it has always come naturally to me (and I probably capture more actions in my to do list system than I need to!), so I came to an agreement with the team.

So, this got me thinking about when is an action actually an action (and when is it something else) and I thought I would share the list we developed with you. If you are struggling to get your team meetings and action board off the ground you might find it to be useful.

Here it is:

The following are not actions

  • The task can be done in less than 10 minutes, directly after the (morning) meeting.
  • The task is part of routine, day-to-day, work.


The following can be considered actions

  • The task is waiting, or stuck.
  • We want to ensure that we don’t forget the task.
  • The task involves a third party or multiple team members.
  • It is a continuous improvement opportunity.
  • Chasing of the task is required.
  • The task isn’t for today.
  • We’re not sure – IF IN DOUBT – ADD!!!
Feel free to copy the list across and adjust it to suit the needs of your business.


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.



Develop your own effective team meetings that drive up business performance




Popular posts from this blog

Stop firefighting, start performing!

Another weeks passes and another example of unnecessary fire fighting demonstrated by a business I have been to help. If you have this taking place in your business, let me ask you a few questions: 1. What keeps on happening? Regain control with this practical book Can you pin down what it is that you keep having to do, to get out of trouble? If you can't, is there a pattern you can observe? 2. Do you want it to stop? Is it causing you enough of a problem that you want it to stop? If the answer is yes, keep reading, if not park it for another day. 3. Find out what is going on Do you know why you are having this issue? If you aren't sure where the issue is arising from, then take a few minutes to have a look around. When you have some idea, go to the next step. 4. Cause and effect Do you know what is truly causing the fire fighting situation? If you spend the time to get to the root cause of the situation , you have a good chance of permanently eliminating this situation. Most p

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

Are your teams clear?

I have recently finished working with a team that were struggling. They were struggling to meet their production schedules. They were struggling to respond to customer enquiries on time. They were burnt out and frazzled. After some prodding and poking it became clear what their issues were. In particular, it became obvious that expectations of the team weren't clear or defined. Defining what you expect from teams is a standard management approach. The problem with most teams is that leadership describe the standards in vague terms . So, what happens if you get the standards crystal clear? You should expect to see the team produce the right outputs. They should produce the outputs at the right time. And, they should produce them in an agreed way. Be clear with your teams. Ask the question: What does good look like? If you want to get some more ideas on how to define effective standards and visions, get your copy of my book today . What does good look like? is a practical guide to h