The benefits of a continuous improvement mindset
When considering the next steps in the growth of a business, it is very easy to fall into the trap of accepting current processes as a best practice and to rely on these as the preferred baseline to grow from. It could be easy to argue; “We got this far using them, therefore, they must work and should logically be the foundations for our growth”. For the majority of businesses that may be true, but only to a certain extent.
Every business will have built and stabilised a number of processes which were most likely perfectly fit for purpose when they were first developed. However, as organisations evolve over time, perhaps though mergers, acquisitions or sales growth, so do the number and complexity of their practices. This can easily lead to procedures becoming outdated, duplicated, contradictory with each other or even redundant. These can all lead to harmful wastes being allowed to perpetuate in the organisation, all of which can hit your bottom line. In Lean Sigma terms we know these wastes as “Tim Wood”, which will be covered in more detail in my next post.
Another common risk to a business is that when something breaks, the first reaction is to fix the symptom. For example, removing water from a boat with a bucket will only work if you fix the cause of the issue and put the bung back in. Any remedial action to a symptom can only have a minimal and short-term benefit. The underlying issue has not been resolved, therefore the same issue will continue to manifest itself. Only by identifying and resolving the root cause of an issue can you hope to improve the symptoms and ultimately fix the issue.
Here’s the good news: There is a range of great continuous improvement tools we can use to help a business drive productivity and enhance profitability.
We look forward to hearing from you to see how we can help you to harness the benefits of continuous improvement and achieve