The Importance of Linking Improvement to Strategy

I’m always keen to share my learning with those who seek to continuously improve.

I often hear of Lean not working, or failing to live up to expectations of senior management and shop-floor alike.

In my opinion this in part due to the obsession of some organisations, and consultants for that matter, to just make it about the tools and techniques. So many times lean efforts start well and after a hiss and a roar fade quickly and die.

Combined with good leadership and the ability to manage the business profitably, and important step is to give all employees a clear sense of direction, linked to vision, values and then ensure everyone knows how things are tracking.

Vital to successful Lean Management is the link to strategy or organisational purpose. Connecting every one at every level to the strategy, deploying the appropriate tools and techniques, is where each and everyone can make their contribution to bringing it to life.

A good strategy deployment process is also crucial to enable two way understanding of what’s important to the company, customers and the team. Hoshin Kanri is one such approach which helps to bring strategy to life and creates alignment to the common goals.

With clear direction and good leadership, the scene is set to deliver on the plan. Improvement should be linked to achieving the plan by working on the right things.Working on the right things to bring the strategy to life is the sign of a highly engaged team, and a culture of continuous improvement.

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