Jon Miller

Total 1349 Posts

Three Ways to Slice the Social Loaf

Humans accomplish things in teams. From the most basic unit of the family to local community to sports clubs to for-profit and non-profit organizations, people working toward a common goal is how we get big things done. Things one person can’t accomplish alone, with two, we can. It would seem

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Three Core Beliefs Fundamental to Standard Work

Standard work and kaizen are often described the two cornerstones of the Toyota Production System house, a.k.a. lean management. The various systems, methods and tools that make up the lean way of working rely on setting provisional standards, testing these standards, practicing and refining them until stable, practicing standard work,

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Review of Four Types of Problems by Art Smalley

The new book by leading lean thinker Art Smalley titled Four Types of Problems is available from the Lean Enterprise Institute. Problem solving is one of my favorite topics. I found myself both delighted by and disagreeing with parts of this book. Nevertheless, I recommend a careful reading of it to

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Lessons in Problem Solving from the NFL

As we wrap up week #4 for the 2018 season of America’s favorite athletic competition-based entertainment, the National Football League has already given us an important lessons in effective problem solving. More precisely, they are lessons in how we should not attempt to solve problems. The specific problem is regarding

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How to Win with 80% Effort

There is an old Japanese saying that I have always liked. It is hara hachibu ni isha irazu (腹八分に医者いらず). It advises, “Eat until 80% full and you’ll need no doctor”. The equivalent English proverb is “Feed by measure and defy the physician.” It is often shortened to just “hara hachibu” or “80% full”. In

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How to Manage Continuous Improvement without Authority

People with the title of “Continuous Improvement Manager” or similar often find that they have broad responsibilities but without the matching authority. The CI Manager may need to identify improvement projects. They may be responsible for executing those projects. They may be required to track and tabulate improvement results from

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