To successfully implement a lean continuous improvement culture, alignment of an organization’s strategic initiatives and vision is a prerequisite. To do this, we suggest senior management participate in RWD’s strategic intent session. This workshop format ensures the executive team gains a higher degree of alignment, common understanding and commitment to those initiatives. Our visioning process is designed to drive unity of understanding and executive commitments to those initiatives that the senior executives agree are critical.
Vision Developmen t – In this stage, RWD is focused on understanding what the client is truly trying to achieve from the Lean initiative. This requires them to look at the REAL reason they are focused on the initiative and to be honest and upfront about the outcomes they need to achieve. Total agreement and alignment within this phase must be accomplished to ensure success. (Example: if the client states that they want an effort focused on emersion of staff in the principals and philosophies of Lean, then that requires a different path in both training and area selection than one focused on revenue or capacity improvement.)
In order for RWD to be effective at designing a solution that is the best fit for the client, we have to be up-front about the desired results, as well as when we expect to achieve them.
Velocity – Once RWD and the client agree on our ability to work together based on the aptitude for success, the project team will need to align to determine the pace at which the facility wishes to implement the initiative. The team will also decide on the overall speed at which the initiative will be applied, as well as to what depth, and whether or not it will be a single site or enterprise wide activity. We also need to consider the number of internal resources that will be attributed to the effort: which ones will impact cost, the amount of coverage, as well as the various training aspects of the project. This will also allow for the determination of how fast and wide the effort can be approached.
Budget Planning – Cost considerations must also be thoroughly reviewed, keeping an eye on the current year, and the trends going forward in patient volume, service line capacity and other markets impacting the hospital and community. The organization will also be requested to outline any planned or upcoming capital improvement projects, significant constraints and/or changes that may impact the project focus or success.
Culture – During this session, RWD will also evaluate the manner in which the executive staff is able to communicate, make decisions, deal with conflict and function as a cohesive team. This evaluation is necessary to determine if the organization has the commitment to ensure the initiative will be sustainable and successful over the long-term.
Converting Strategy To Execution – Successfully achieving this requires ongoing executive engagement through coaching, training and mentoring which will include: understanding of Lean foundational principals, understanding of Lean application for best results, strategic application into planning and Hoshin Kanri systems. Leaders develop supporting actions and skills required to drive the Lean culture change within the organization and also develop or strengthen internal champions and Subject Matter Experts. Strategic problem solving is incorporated into annual business planning to allow them to:
- Determine speed and areas of focus for system
- Select specific champions, governance model and rollout schedule
- Prioritize projects based on the above items
- Create a transformational roadmap that will complete documentation of journey and internal website development