Management Improvement Carnival #107

The Curious Cat management blog carnival selects recent management blog posts 3 times each month. Since 2006 the carnival has focused on finding interesting posts for managers on improving the performance of organizations (lean manufacturing, Deming, agile software development, six sigma, customer focus, innovation…).

  • “To find out what happens when you change something, it is necessary to change it.” by Andrew Gelman – “From the classic Box, Hunter, and Hunter book. The point of the saying is pretty clear, I think: There are things you learn from perturbing a system that you’ll never find out from any amount of passive observation.”
  • Lean and Six Sigma: PDCA and DMAIC Comparison by Pete Abilla – “A big difference between PDCA and DMAIC is the corporate infrastructure required. Six Sigma and the DMAIC methodology in which its work is carried out, requires a steering committee, tollgates, a champion, and a project sponsor.”
  • That’s the trouble with targets by Glyn Lumley – “That’s the trouble with targets. The whole mindset is wrong. It’s as if quality is seen as something that should be achieved – an outcome, a result. Meet the target and everything is fine; miss the target and you’re doomed!”
  • The question every manager should be able to answer – “What does success and excellence look like for me in this role?”
  • Podcast #97 – Bob Sutton, PhD, “Good Boss, Bad Boss” by Mark Graban
  • MBA Case Studies Teach the Wrong Things – “The truth is that the corporate ecosystem is enormously complex. Presenting a simplified view of that ecosystem may seem to make pedagogical sense, but it leads to the false belief that problems are easily understood, that there is one “right” answer, and that there’s no need for experimentation. And that’s a tremendous disservice to future business leaders.”
  • Feedback is the Key! by Matt Stine – “Perhaps the most important feedback loop of all is team to client. You can have a well-oiled machine of a development team writing the highest quality code in the industry, but if it doesn’t deliver value to your customer, it’s absolutely worthless!”
  • Five Critical Success Factors for Project Managers by Sonja Hughes – “If management support is missing, people and funding resources may not be available for the project…. Lack of management support is a major reason for project failures.”
  • Idea Deficit Disorder – Stopping the Epidemic by Wally Bock – “Remember human nature. Human beings are natural idea generators. At work they usually have plenty of ideas. They don’t share them because most of their bosses didn’t want to hear new ideas.”
  • The Value of Healthy Employees by Gregg Stocker – “In my experience, companies that offer extensive wellness programs tend to have much more positive energy around a change initiative.”
  • The Purpose of Lean by Jon Miller – “Genuine lean is essentially continuous improvement paired with respect for humanity.”
  • The Best Way to Measure Company Performance by John Hagel III and John Seely Brown – “No single metric is perfect and different metrics are appropriate depending upon the circumstances. But our over-reliance on ROE is problematic on many levels.”
  • Ever feel overwhelmed with PDCAs? by – JC Gatlin – “Clearly, managing your PDCA WIP can be as challenging as eliminating a recurring problem. To become effective problem solvers, we must start organizing and prioritizing.”
  • 3 Ways to Sneak Lean into Your Company by Jeff Hajek – “Ask managers and teams to predict outcomes. A great way to do this is to implement a daily management system.” (2005 Curious Cat post: Management is Prediction)
  • Yes You Kanban! by Matt Stine – “While it seems incredibly simple (and it is!), the two mechanisms of workflow visualization and limiting WIP can provide an incredible catalyst for the optimization of software delivery flow and the birth of a kaizen culture. Process bottlenecks and inefficiencies will quickly become visually apparent, and the slack created by limited WIP can be used for collaboration around process improvement”
  • Standards Enable Creativity by Jamie Flinchbaugh – “But structure, constraint, method – they help creativity. How? They provide focus. They provide a foundation on which to experiment and learn. It enables the mind to spend more bandwidth on the challenge at hand without having to be distracted by coming up with the method at the same time.”
  • How to Manage What You Can’t Measure by John Hunter – “The danger is that we mistake measures for the thing itself. Measures are a proxy and we need to understand the limitation of the data we use… We need to think. We need to understand that the data is useful but the limitations need to be remembered.”

Related: Curious Cat Investment CarnivalManagement Improvement Carnival #7Management Improvement Carnival #57

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