<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=749646578535459&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

KaiNexus Blog

Everything Continuous Improvement

Subscribe

Greg Jacobson

Greg Jacobson is the Chief Executive Officer and a co-founder of KaiNexus. He is an ER doctor that is fanatical about the single biggest barrier holding companies back from greatness - their lack of continuous improvement work. It has taken him down the path of developing KaiNexus. He also loves pickles, playing squash, and hanging out with his insanely awesome wife and daughter.
Find me on:

Recent Posts

Key Objectives and Activities for Each Step of DMAIC

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Apr 14, 2021 12:12:02 PM

DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control) is a data-driven, structured, customer-centric problem-solving methodology. Each phase builds on the last to arrive at practical solutions for challenging problems. Define tells you what to measure. Measure tells you what to analyze. Analyze tells you what to improve. And Improve tells you what to control.

Each phase has particular objectives and is supported by a specific set of activities. Let's take a closer look at them.

Read More

Topics: Lean, Six Sigma

Real Life Examples of the 7 Wastes of Lean (Plus 1)

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Apr 12, 2021 11:33:36 AM

Ecologists and other environmentally aware people often talk about a goal of "Zero Waste." We think that's an outstanding goal for business as well.

Eliminating waste is at the heart of the Lean business methodology. The purpose of Lean is to spend more of your time creating value for customers by reducing or eliminating everything that does not produce value (AKA the waste). To make it easier to find and eliminate waste in business processes, Lean practitioners identified the "7 Wastes of Lean." Some include an 8th waste, the waste of human potential.

Although the Lean approach originated in manufacturing, it is used in almost every sector. Strikingly the seven wastes are common across industries, including software development, construction, and education.

While some of the wastes are self-explanatory, others are more difficult to recognize. This post aims to help by giving a few examples of each type of waste in various businesses. Hopefully, they will help you think about how waste may be occurring in your processes. Of course, the people who are most likely to find and correct waste are the process operators, so it is a good idea to share these examples with them and provide a way for each employee to submit opportunities for improvement.

Read More

Topics: Lean

The Benefits of Using an X-Matrix for Strategy Deployment

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Mar 4, 2021 1:35:34 PM

Hoshin Kanri, sometimes called "strategy deployment", is an approach that helps companies achieve breakthrough goals over a three to five-year time horizon.

The methodology is effective because it allows leaders to keep their eye on the long-term objectives that will change the game, without losing sight of the day-to-day improvements that can add up to significant benefits.

However, we won’t lie. Effective strategy deployment isn’t easy.

Too often, the strategic plan gets lip service but little else. If you are looking for help making sure that your organization arrives at “True North,” an X-Matrix might help.

Read More

Topics: Hoshin Kanri, Strategy Deployment

An Introduction to Process Control Charts

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Feb 4, 2021 12:27:31 PM

Donald J. Wheeler, PhD is a world-renowned expert in continuous improvement. He's worked with W. Edwards Deming and wrote the classic book Understanding Variation. 

Wheeler once wrote and said, "Statistical Process Control is, at its heart, about getting the most from your processes. It is about the continual improvement of processes and outcomes. And it is, first and foremost, a way of thinking... with some tools attached." 

I’d like to thank him for providing the perfect quote for a blog about process control charts because measurement, control, and improvement are exactly what they are designed to enable.

Read More

Topics: Lean, Six Sigma, Improvement Process

Mistakes Were Made: The Great Molasses Flood of 1919

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Dec 30, 2020 11:36:00 AM

On January 15, 1919, in the North End neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, a large storage tank owned by the Purity Brewing Company filed with 2.3 million gallons of molasses weighing approximately 12,000 tons burst. As a result, a wave of molasses rushed through the streets at an estimated 35 miles per hour, killing 21 people and injuring another 150. 

Like many other tragic disasters, this one was entirely preventable. As is often the case, no single decision of factor alone was responsible for the catastrophe that left Boston smelling like molasses on hot summer days for decades. 

A look at the circumstances leading up to the flood reveals that leaders at Purity Brewing Company made the same kinds of mistakes common in organizations today. 

Read More

The Right Way to Talk About Standard Work with Your Staff

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Nov 12, 2020 1:01:47 PM

We've written about standard work in the past, but it is often a topic that is overlooked or misunderstood in the continuous improvement process of many organizations, so it's definitely worth revisiting. If you’re in the process of implementing LeanKaizen, Six Sigma, or another method of continuous improvement, we strongly recommend making standard work a part of your process.

What is Standard Work?

Standard work is the practice of setting, communicating, following, and improving standards.

Establishing standard work begins with creating, clarifying, and sharing information about the most efficient method to perform a task that is currently known with everyone performing that process. Once this information has been shared, everyone practices this standard consistently so that the work is done the best way every time. This is where continuous improvement comes into play; standard work isn't a "set it and forget it" process, announced once and then permanently unchanging. Instead, everyone should work to improve the standard, and share new best practices as they're discovered.

Read More

Topics: Lean, Leadership

The 7 Steps of Hoshin Kanri Planning

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Oct 22, 2020 11:20:45 AM

The process you use to develop your strategic plan is as important as the plan itself. That’s why many organizations turn to the Hoshin Kanri approach, which focuses on creating a plan that takes into account both the daily management of the organization and the tactics necessary to reach those goals that will have the most significant impact. The result is a set of specific action plans and resources necessary to achieve your business breakthrough.

Although some organizations tweak the approach to meet their specific needs, most often the Hoshin Kanri planning process consists of the following seven steps.

Read More

Topics: Hoshin Kanri

Quality Improvement in Residency Programs

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Oct 12, 2020 2:30:00 PM

I received an interesting call a few weeks back from Bahnsen Miller, MD. Bahnsen is an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Virginia Health System. He attended LSU School of Medicine and completed his residency training there. After residency training, he completed a quality improvement and patient safety fellowship at Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Baton Rouge—this is where he learned about KaiNexus. Since then, Bahnsen has been working with residents and students on various quality improvement and patient safety initiatives.

He asked me if I had ever thought of using KaiNexus to help train physicians during their medical school and/or residency periods. It brought back a flood of memories from how my “improvement story” began.

Read More

How to Build Kaizen into Employee Onboarding

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Sep 17, 2020 2:00:00 PM

Much of the information published about establishing a culture of Kaizen is written for leaders who are introducing the concept to their entire organization for the first time. But once the Kaizen mindset is established, the job is not done. Looking for opportunities for positive change may be second nature to your long-term employees, but many new hires will have no knowledge of Kaizen or daily improvement. Without a plan for familiarizing these new team members with Kaizen, your carefully developed culture can quickly become diluted. That's why it is critical to bake Kaizen into your employee onboarding process. Here are our top tips for doing precisely that.

Read More

Topics: Kaizen, Employee Engagement

20 Inspirational Business Process Improvement Quotes

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Jul 16, 2020 11:54:45 AM

Let’s be honest, it can be difficult to get people excited about the subject of business process improvement. The phrase itself has no personality, no flair.

Of course, we know that continuous improvement and innovation are requirements for success in today’s hyper-competitive environment. One way to get teams excited about business process improvement is to bring meaning to it using an inspiring motto or catchphrase that gives life to the idea. You can choose one and use it as the theme for your business process improvement efforts, or offer a new bit of inspiration every week.

Of course, you can invent your own, but we’ve found some quotes from business leaders and others that might do quite nicely. Here are a few. 

Read More

Topics: Leadership

Recent Posts