Management Improvement Carnival #88

Since 2006 the Curious Cat Management Improvement Carnival has provided links to interesting blog posts for those interesting in improving the practice of management especially focused on the ideas of Deming, Ohno, Ackoff, Scholtes, McGregor, Womack, Christensen

  • Putting the Checklist Manifesto to Work by Wally Bock – “Checklists are simple but powerful tools that can help you improve performance without improving either skill or abilities. Use them to take a load off your memory, assure consistent process performance, and remain calm in a crisis.”
  • The Role of Purpose and Your Role by Mark Graban – “Are you just laying bricks or are you building a cathedral? You want people to understand their purpose, not just their job description or the tasks that are assigned to them. This is very similar to Jim Womack’s ‘Purpose, Process, People’ model. Your ‘role’ (what you are responsible for) is more than your task assignments” [great postJohn]
  • Stretch, Don’t Break – 5 ways to grow your people by Mark Hamel – “Make people think. Don’t give people the answers. Help guide and challenge them to apply PDCA thinking – to become experimentalists. This means that people will often fail. Lean leaders must see these failures as learning opportunities.”
  • Measurement Misnomers, and Toyota Dealership Problems by Jamie Flinchbaugh – “Any time a measurement is tied to an incentive, then it is likely to be manipulated at some level… Metrics are abstractions, by definition. That means they never truly represent reality… Don’t throw out your measurements. Just know that they don’t give you the whole story. Take the time to understand the current state as it actually happens, through direct observation.”
  • Suddenly, Deming is Relevant Again by Art Petty – “I’m also critically concerned about learning from the past and understanding the wisdom of those that came before us. We’ve not yet moved beyond the flaws and failings that Deming saw clearly in the management practices of the industrial revolution. ” [I agree, John – ]
  • It’s not a promise, it’s a guess by David Heinemeier Hansson – “Software development is inherently unpredictable… That’s the true value of estimates. That it sets up conversational constraints that can be used as boundaries for trading concessions.”
  • 8 Reasons People Resist Change by Jeff Hajek – “1) Fear. By far the biggest reason for resistance to change, fear creates paralysis. People get worried that the new way won’t work, that they will not do well following the modified process, or that it will mean having to change to another job within the company. Worst of all, they fear layoffs.”
  • What Lean is Not and Never Will Be by Jon Miller – “Let’s say that lean is continuous improvement and respect for people. Then let’s get our head right, get started and never stop. And let’s not worry too much about what lean is not”
  • “I found it vaguely embarrassing and frustrating to be in an office.” by Bob Sutton – “To me, the upshot of all this is NOT everyone should move to an open office and every CEO should be in the middle of the social swarm like Tim. Rather, the lesson is that what Tim and other senior people at IDEO do works when you have the right kind of culture and leadership, when the work requires interdependence and knowledge sharing, and people have developed the right skills and routines to work effectively when they are out in the open and on display to everyone else.”
  • Toyota’s Shop Floor Still Remembers by Kevin Meyer – “While Toyota executives are scurrying around having lost their way, the employees at their factories are doing what Toyota does best: improving.”
  • Make A “Social Contract” With Your Team by Jurgen Appelo – “that management is all about people, and that it needs to acknowledge their basic intrinsic desires. A social contract is a simple but effective way of making this explicit for all involved.”
  • Lean Demonstrated at Subway by Tim McMahon – “Due to the need for freshness and longer cycle times the bread is baked, cheese is sliced, and vegetables are cut prior to the store opening. The raw materials are stored at the point of use in bins in the assembly line. They are placed in the order in which the sandwich is prepared creating a standard while mistake proofing the preparation sequence.”
  • Understanding Psychology: Slogans – Risky Tools by John Hunter – “A slogan by itself has negative value. Take any wonderful slogan and move it somewhere else it will do more harm than good. As a minor part of a system though it can tap into how we people think and act (psychology) and provide value. Be careful though, it is much easier to do harm with slogans than to provide value.”
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3 Responses to Management Improvement Carnival #88

  1. Thanks for including me John. Another great list.

  2. Wally Bock says:

    Thanks for the pointer to my blog, John. This Carnival always has excellent links and I'm proud to be included this time.

  3. Angus says:

    Thanks for the list, I've recently started my own business and don't know much about management yet. These blogs, and yours will definitely help me out.

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