Thursday, September 8, 2011

How Do You Motivate People to Keep Asking Why?

By Pascal Dennis,

What's the most common attribute of great organizations?

Problem solving...

Whether problems of design, marketing, manufacturing or distribution -- great companies are full of problem solvers.

Toyota's famous Five Why technique has been widely adopted now -- but results vary widely.

Some cultures get it -- others, not so much.

Here are a few thoughts as to why...
To get to root cause, you have to keep asking why. You have to care...

People have to feel, "This is my machine, department, factory, company." and "Getting to root cause benefits me."

So how do leaders create this sense of ownership, loyalty and esprit de corps?

Focus on Safety first -- everything else (Quality, Delivery, Cost...) follows.

Safety is our window on the process, as well as, as concrete message to team members:

“You’re our most valuable asset. We’re going to keep you safe, we’re not going to lay you off except in the direst of circumstances and as a last resort, and we’re going to teach you stuff that’ll make you even more valuable to us.”

Who wouldn’t want to work at a place like that?

P.S. We've launched our Lean Leadership Brain Boosters -- to help lock in the fundamentals. Would love to get your feedback on them.

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