I just finished reading through the official training document the ‘Healthcare Leaders’ in the Northumberland and Tyne and Wear National Health Service ( NHS), England for what they call their ‘Continuous Improvement System’
Just a couple of point that the NHS may want to consider changing to make this a more effective training course and document.
1. The training is extremely focused on ‘the Toyota way’ and the Toyota Production System ‘ …I think this a mistake….and actually will put off many students…
Lean Six Sigma has been an evolution from many, many sources. Yes, Toyota implemented the principles very well and had large success from it, and added to and improved the Body of Knowledge, however many of the methods, tools and techniques had been around for decades before.
- Adam Smith ( Division of Labour 1776 )
- Frank G Woollard ( Morris Motors 1925 )
- Walter Shewhart ( Western Electric and Bell Labs 1930 )
- Fredrick Winslow Taylor ( Principles of Scientific Management )
- W, Edwards Deming
- Joseph Juran
2. There was not enough emphasis on the ‘People’ side of Lean. The importance of ‘Respect for the Worker’ as a Problem Solver, team member etc Making work EASIER for the worker ( Shigeo Shingo) , and using their ‘Understanding the Gemba’ are all very important.
In fact John Bicheno ( University of Buckingham ) in his book
The Lean Toolbox: The Essential Guide to Lean Transformation ( Amazon.com)
now lists his Lean Principles as
2. Value Stream
4. Perfection ( Kaizen )
Also see the discussion on ‘Lean vs Fake Lean’ which the University of Connecticut Professor Bob Emiliani has been so good in promoting. Prof Emiliani makes the case that Lean without making it for the benefit of the workers and focus on the involvement of the workers will fail.
3. Not enough mention of Data collection, Data analysis and Data Driven Decision making. This I realize is not ‘pure lean’ however it is very important in problem solving, and analysis in getting the the Root cause of the symptoms of problems. This should be part of any training on Continuous Improvement.