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KaiNexus Blog

Everything Continuous Improvement

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Maggie Millard

As the Director of Marketing, Maggie educates the continuous improvement community, KaiNexus customers, executives, managers, and staff in just about every industry you can think of about improvement principles and KaiNexus' continuous improvement software. Her desire to improve the American healthcare system combined with a love of spreading knowledge to the far reaches of the internet inspires her work with KaiNexus every day. Maggie graduated from the College of William and Mary in 2010 with a BA in History. She spends her free time hanging out with her sweet, sticky, stinky new baby and two displaced dogs in the mountains of Virginia.
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Recent Posts

The History & Evolution of the PDSA Cycle of Improvement

Posted by Maggie Millard

May 13, 2021 1:19:01 PM

The PDSA cycle is a popular approach to process improvement because of its simultaneous simplicity and effectiveness. PDSA cycles can be applied to an unlimited number of processes, making them applicable across almost every industry. We thought it was worth a quick look back at how it came to be and how it has changed over time.

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Topics: Daily Improvement, Lean

The Motivation-Hygiene Theory of Employee Engagement

Posted by Maggie Millard

Apr 20, 2021 10:00:57 AM

It is relatively common for people to use the terms "employee engagement" and "employee satisfaction" interchangeably. However, we have never been comfortable with that framing, especially when it comes to software to measure and improve engagement. Tools like employee NPS and employee pulse surveys do an excellent job of measuring employee satisfaction, but they don't have features likely to increase employee engagement. Understanding the difference can help organizations that want to attract, retain, and develop talent find the tools that can help them do so.

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Topics: Employee Engagement

KaiNexus Office Relocating to Antarctica, Summer 2021

Posted by Maggie Millard

Apr 1, 2021 2:36:46 PM

Companies around the world have spent the last year learning how to manage a remote workforce as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe. While many are looking forward to life getting back to normal, the KaiNexus team is looking to go in a different direction.

“Our Austin office lease expired while our team was working fully remote last summer, and we realized that we had a golden opportunity to finally take the leap we’ve been dreaming about for years,” said KaiNexus CEO Greg Jacobson. Jacobson first visited Antarctica back in 2012, where he fell in love with the solitude and expansive views. “There’s room to think out here.”

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The Fundamentals of the Lean Methodology

Posted by Maggie Millard

Mar 25, 2021 1:39:40 PM

The Lean methodology is an evolution of the Toyota Production System that the Japanese automaker implemented following World War II to improve the efficiency and flexibility of its manufacturing. Two important books, The Machine That Changed the World (1990) by James P. Womack, Daniel Roos, and Daniel T. Jone and Lean Thinking (1996) by James P. Womack and Daniel T. Jones, outlined the structure and principles for the Lean method.

Although Lean got its start in manufacturing, today it is widely used across the globe in every sector including logistics and distribution, services, retail, healthcare, construction, maintenance, and even higher education.

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Topics: Lean

6 Principles of the Continuous Improvement Model

Posted by Maggie Millard

Mar 11, 2021 12:06:58 PM

There are a host of methodologies that businesses use to bring structure to the process of identifying and acting upon opportunities for improvement. You may be familiar with Six Sigma, Kaizen, Lean, Toyota Production System, and others. Although these methodologies differ, the heart of each of them is the continuous improvement model. 

The continuous improvement model reflects the idea that organizations should undertake incremental improvements to services, products, and processes. It is guided by a few core principles:

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Topics: Improvement Culture, Spread Continuous Improvement

Wondering Where to Start? 30 Business Process Improvement Examples

Posted by Maggie Millard

Mar 9, 2021 10:13:00 AM

One thing we hear from leaders who are looking to implement a structured approach to business process improvement is that it is difficult to explain to employees how to spot an opportunity for improvement. There are usually a few straightforward ideas that people point to right away, but once they are taken care of, it can be challenging to spot problems in processes, especially those you engage with every day.

An effective way to overcome this problem is to give employees categories of improvement opportunities to consider. Priming the pump with some examples and providing some questions to ask is an excellent way to get people thinking creatively. Of course, every business is different, and all of these examples might not apply to you, but here are 30 ideas that might spark a few of your own.

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Topics: Leadership, Spread Continuous Improvement, Improvement Process

Improvement Software Buyer's Guide for Manufacturers

Posted by Maggie Millard

Mar 2, 2021 10:29:00 PM

Continuous improvement has long been an important goal in manufacturing. Some organizations leverage structured business management methodologies such as Lean or Six Sigma, while others use a less formal approach. Either way, the goal is to maximize resources, reduce cost, and deliver quality products on time. Many organizations have turned to improvement management software to help remove the friction from positive change to achieve these critical objectives. If you are considering technology to accelerate your progress, this post will help.

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Topics: Software, Continuous Improvement Software, Improvement Process

9 Brilliantly Simple Continuous Quality Improvement Techniques

Posted by Maggie Millard

Feb 18, 2021 10:59:12 AM

I often find myself falling into the common trap of believing that if something is worthwhile, it is necessarily difficult. I think we all expect that valuable things are hard. The truth is, however, that sometimes the most effective and impactful things we can do are really quite simple.

When it comes to continuous quality improvement, this is absolutely the case.

Here are 9 examples of quality improvement tools, techniques, and technology that are uncomplicated yet extremely valuable.

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Topics: Quality, Spread Continuous Improvement

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement Model for Improvement

Posted by Maggie Millard

Feb 2, 2021 10:19:00 AM

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) Model for Improvement is a straightforward approach that many organizations use to structure their improvement strategies. The method focuses on setting goals and teamwork to achieve change. It promotes improvement by looking for answers to three questions:

  • What are we trying to accomplish?
  • How will we know that a change results in improvement?
  • What changes can we make that will achieve improvement?

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Topics: Lean Healthcare, Improvement Process

Improvement Software Rollout: How to Overcome Resistance to Change

Posted by Maggie Millard

Dec 21, 2020 11:41:28 AM

By the time an organization invests in software technology to support continuous improvement, they've usually embraced the idea that improvement should be a daily activity practiced by everyone in the organization. They realize that the people closest to the production of value for the customer are the ones who are in the best position to identify and resolve problems.

But not all improvement software rollouts are successful. You can pick the best technology platform on the planet, but it is useless if people won't use it. Often managers are focused on the training aspects of a new software implementation, and rightly so, but user adoption should be a parallel concern. Here are ten things you can do to get your team fully on board with your new improvement management solution.

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Topics: Innovation Software, Software, Continuous Improvement Software

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