Trying to determine what is happening in a process without first standardizing the process is wasting team and employee energy. How can we improve a process without first knowing if it stable and then determining if it is capable of producing the desired results?
How do we know what process is in most need of improving? Why do leaders pick numbers out of the air (along with project completion dates) and subject workers to their incompetence and then punish them when results are not provided fast enough?
Do they any clue to what are Process and Quality Measures?
I always asked the golden question that I learned from Dr. Deming - "By what method did you come up with those goals and targets?"
Make sure you ask humbly and then be prepared to be the one to go out and find the numerics. What leaders don't understand that in the long run taking the time up front to determine what and how big the problem is will save time in the long run.
You see taking time to evaluate the process does not bring results. Let me clarify - does not bring quick results. This type of investigative time is not value-added. The end of the quarter comes soon and so does the leader's next staff meeting. How dare anyone NOT provide non-quick faked numbers and goals and targets and hope no one remembers at the next meeting.
Perhaps the following write-up on establishing measures will get the process rolling. I can't promise the results will come super quick, but I can tell you the improvements will be long lasting because you will have built a process with measures that will let you know when something is wrong and not when a leader picks a process out of a hat.
- Measurements should track how well our processes are performing according to:
• Customer Expectations (including customer perception) and Organization Objectives
• Customer Satisfaction • Value Drivers
• Competitive Benchmarking • Employee Satisfaction
The above stated types of measurements will help determine the overall quality, efficiency, and effectiveness of all processes.
The activities involved in defining and establishing measures include:
1. Determining effective measures
2. Reviewing and validating existing measures
3. Implementing new measurements
4. Install a measurement and reporting system
5. Establish a feedback and monitoring system
6. Monitor measurements
Establishing Effective Measurements:
• Customer expectations/requirements
• Practical to implement
• Easy to comprehend
• Consensus of agreement by group
• Able to help drive culture change
These types of measurements should provide objective data that will drive decisions that will produce long-term customer preference.
It is vital that our measurements be easily defined, understood and communicated to assure common understanding.
A small amount of meaningful measures are worth 10 times more than a large amount of nice to know measures (non-value added).
If at the beginning measured identification is difficult, start with customer satisfaction, every major process has a customer.
This also requires agreement on what measures will be reported and that method and system support is available. The Action Plan must include trend analysis and plans of who will respond to them in a timely basis.
It's also important to share feedback with workers in the process as well as customers and suppliers.
6. MONITOR MEASUREMENTS