In 2016, I am learning quickly, it is critical that processes be measured. It is one thing to talk about quality processes. It is another thing to measure processes and look at ways to improve processes.
I typically start with questions and working toward a baseline. I am amazed to find how many processes are never analyzed. The typical response of “we’ve been doing it that way for years” is the usual response. To me, this message means, we’ve never really looked closer at our process and we don’t intend to look at it closely unless things go wrong.
From my perspective, the process in this last example has already gone wrong, because it does not produce any results because the process has never been analyzed for results.
After a baseline has been established, it is important to ask more questions and see if there are any opportunities for improvement. Normally, the improvements are very obvious at this stage and it is important to not grab the first improvement that comes along but really look at all of the options available.
From here, I look at how people and technology can make the process even better. If technology is brought in too early, it will not be near as effective.
Process improvement is the foundation for building a new experience and creating an innovative culture that looks at a much bigger picture than a traditional band-aid approach to improvement.
I’ve learned to be very patient and relentless at the same time. I don’t look for results right away. I want to see as many options as possible and then move on the option that will produce the most results.
In my opinion, measuring more and more processes each day opens up the process of improving processes and creating better experiences.