Learning and Leading Together
The objective of the Kaizen for public health institutes program was to develop Kaizen Event Leaders with the knowledge and skills to promote rapid and measurable improvements in public health work processes and outcomes, within accredited public health organizations.
Results – Kaizen Application
Louisiana Public Health Institute Kaizen Event – Reducing the work content time required for the Proposal Development Process.
The goal was TO: Improve the efficiency of the proposal development process, reducing staff labor hours SO THAT: We are not wasting resources in the proposal development process and we are putting our labor hours towards the most important aspects of the proposal development process to ensure quality and success.
STANDARDS: Potential reduction of 60-70% in labor hours AND Staff frustration reduced; Less overtime; Shorter Cycle (elapsed) time; More standardized, consistent output.
Approach / Methods
Assisted in program development; evaluation and selection of candidates; delivering six days of comprehensive Continual Quality Improvement education for leaders at three Public Health Institutes in foundational methods and the Kaizen process; on-site co-leading of a Kaizen event; distance coaching of two Kaizen events; coaching and development of Kaizen event leaders.
Day 1: Introduction to Improvement: Seeing the Possible (course and simulation)
The first training included LPHI staff members (14) and the Kaizen program participants (4). The day’s objective was to provide participants the needed knowledge and skills to actively participate in improvement so that they understand & identify the concepts of improvement (Waste/Value, QI Methods, & some examples of their use); appreciate the degree of change and benefits that are truly possible when adopting QI; and are prepared for additional QI training and participation in activities such as improvement events.
Day 2: Kaizen: What, Why, How of Kaizen
Day 2 brought together the program participants to focus specifically on their role as Kaizen Event Leaders. In a tell, show, do, recycle training environment the team learned and applied communication skills and the began the Kaizen event approach including confirming the use of Kaizen as an improvement method, preparing for a Kaizen event, writing good goal statements and project measures.
Day 3: Process Mapping, Kaizen Preparations
On Day 3 the team learned Process Mapping. Mapping included the basics, value stream mapping, spaghetti diagrams, and sub process mapping. Each participant applied the value stream mapping and sub process mapping techniques to their Kaizen project.
Day 4: Kaizen: What, Why, How of Kaizen
The next training day had the team focusing on gaining Managing Change, Performing Day 1 of the Kaizen event, Gathering Knowledge, and Waste/Value Analysis knowledge and skills. The newly introduced methods were applied to their Kaizen project; methods such as Stakeholder Analysis, Communication Strategies, and Gathering Practical Knowledge.
Day 5: Problem Solving
Day 5 was all about Problem Solving; using the Cause and Effect analysis to work through problem solving. Participants again practiced identifying – prioritizing issues, root cause analysis (5 Whys), and identify – prioritizing solutions.
Day 6-7: Kaizen (Performing and Institutionalizing)
Learning how to lead the team through the entire improvement cycle using varied methods and techniques through the 5 days of the Kaizen event and how to effectively install and continual improve the new process was the focus for the last bit of training. The team practiced facilitating a team with problematic behaviors, creating an improvement hypothesis, developing tests, capturing lessons learned, and effectively teaching.
Many were surprised to learn that the week included the ‘Doing’ (creating materials, job aids, training material, and beginning rollout). Once this was realized, the engagement grew.