Archive for December, 2011

“I know, I know!”

Posted on: December 24th, 2011 by admin No Comments

Beware the “I know, I know” syndrome from an enthusiastic employee. The event occurs when the employee remembers a similar incident with a returned part, production line failure, or software issue. Unfortunately, reasoning from effects to causes is actually a logical fallacy called “affirming the consequent.”

We cannot assume that a given effect has but one cause. Hence, when we have an untoward incident in our business, we need to be aware of our assumptions as we confront the problem–something more easily stated than accomplished. When we test, we always need to take some extra steps to try and very the specific cause for the effect we are seeing and avoid the logical fallacy.

We can apply the same thinking to good things that occur as well. Often, we don’t really understand what is causing the salubrious effect we are seeing. Even worse, we may be seeing the effect of a relatively random cause but still assign the cause to something that provides a comfortable explanation.

Always go the extra step with both the good and the bad and be cognizant of assumption, some of which may be subconscious.

More on the Power of the Routine Task

Posted on: December 3rd, 2011 by admin 1 Comment

Our previous post discussed the power of the routine task. Part of the purpose of this approach is to achieve a state of wei-wu-wei or “effortless effort,” where our achievements seem to occur almost as if by magic. Objectives and targets begin to finish on or ahead of schedule, yet we don’t appear to really be doing that much.

We can also tie in our efforts to the quality concept of kaizen, also known as incremental and relentless improvement by small changes (not the fly-by-night “kaizen event”). Not only does our work appear to happen by itself, but the 10,000 changes also effect a steady modification of the organizational culture. We are leery of programs, books, and consultants who promise a transformation! No, we don’t think it works that way and nothing we have seen in the workplace supports these supposed transformations.

We suggest thinking long and hard before making drastic changes; that is, unless you are already in a “turnaround” situation, where drastic is probably going to happen anyhow–usually with the end of the existing culture in a blast of poorly understood social darwinism…

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to our Newsletter
Name
Email *
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO