Management Improvement Blog Carnival #187

The Curious Cat Management Carnival is published twice each month. The posts selected for the carnival focus on the areas of management improvement I have focused on in the Curious Cat Management Improvement Guide since 1996: Deming, lean manufacturing, customer focus, leadership, systems thinking, respect for people, etc..

  • We Need to Understand Variation to Manage Effectively by Mike Stoecklein – “I believe that much of what I see and hear these days related to lean and lean thinking can be traced back to Dr. Deming, his teachings and the system of profound knowledge – with one exception. I rarely hear anything about ‘understanding variation’.”
  • Lean Leadership Lessons from Costco Wholesale by Jon Miller – “1) Obey the law 2) Take care of our members 3) Take care of our employees 4) Respect our vendors 5) Reward our shareholders. If we do these four things throughout our organization, then we will realize our ultimate goal, which is to reward our shareholders.”
  • photo of 4 penguins marching on a beach in South Africa

    Penguins marching on a beach in South Africa by Justin Hunter.

  • Employees leave managers, not companies [link broken :-(] by Alaister Low – “The key to being able to keep the good employees is not so much the salary you offer them or even the actual work, it is more about how you manage them and how they feel working under you as their manager. Do they feel valued within your team?…”
  • 10 Penalties That I Would Call if I Were a Management Referee by Dan McCarthy – “1. Employee pass interference: Otherwise known as micromanagement, this penalty is for getting in the way of an employee or team of employees that know how to do the job better than the manager. 2. Illegal use of meetings: A meeting with no agenda, no apparent purpose, no process facilitation, little or no collaboration, and no meaningful decisions or action items…”
  • Sunday’s Dilbert & Deming’s Demotivation Curve by Mark Graban – “The ‘forces of destruction’ can only crush intrinsic motivation… as Dilbert’s boss crushed out of Alice (and everybody else there)… How do we stop demotivating people instead of crushing them and then trying to re-motivate them?”
  • Lean Accounting and Traditional Accounting Compared Part 3 – performance measures by Brian Maskell – “I believe you just can’t run a Lean company with traditional measurements (operational and financial.) If you do, you will not be able to sustain Lean manufacturing (or Lean product development, Lean sales and marketing, etc.) because your measurements will “push back” against your efforts. Moreover, you cannot have two sets of measurements; one for financial control and the other for operational control.”
  • How to Limit WIP #3–Reducing Interruptions by Jim Benson – “Since most interruptions are small, routine, and often important, we tend not to notice them. When interruptions are annoying, we do notice them. Then, when we are late in finishing something, we will blame our lateness on the annoying interruption and conveniently forget all the other ones.”
  • Taking Risks is Necessary but Failure is Something to Reduce in Scope with a Smart Testing Process by John Hunter – “We should have mistake proofing in place to avoid as many failures as possible. Failing because we do a lousy job of running an experiment isn’t good. It isn’t something to encourage. We want to develop a culture where risks are accepted when they are useful but that doesn’t mean we want to take risks that are foolish and not helpful.”

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