Articles

Top 10 Problems Faced by Business
We interviewed top CEOs to create a list of the Top 10 Problems businesses will attempt to solve. Here is what we found.
Smart Manufacturing: Data Analytics in the New Industrial Revolution
Are companies truly realizing the benefits of the digital age?
Data Analytics Glossary
Wondering what your data analysts are telling you? Use this glossary to translate.
Find the Value in Your Data
As the number of data analysts grows, many industries are still only realizing a fraction off their data's potential value.
Big Data Remains Big News
Maintain a competitive advantage with an investment in big data.
80% of innovation efforts are unsuccessful. Learn how you can flip those numbers and see an 80% SUCCESS RATE with innovation.
Innovation is a top priority for many leaders - but how successful are they?
Data boat
You don't need years of training. There are a few widely used methods that can be learned in just a few days.
What Is the Job-To-Be-Done?
The Job-To-Be-Done is a valuable framework for identifying new opportunities and creating viable growth strategies.
Don't miss the mark with improving the customer experience
Explore this five-step process to developing deep customer insights and improving the customer experience.
process mapping
Process maps use different symbols to note the function or action of the line and steps. Here are some of the most common.
team creating a process map
Process maps are a commonly used tool that serves as the foundation for many analyses.
Building a team of data analysts is a top priority for many organizations. Find the right fit by developing from the inside.
Innovation myths stunt performance
There are many misunderstandings about innovation and not even the experts agree on which myths to debunk. But here are 7 common ones.
Separation Principles help resolve physical contradictions
Separation principles help when some physical contradiction stands between you and an innovation.
Are You Being Misled by Customers or Inspired by Them?
How can any organization create solutions that are inspired by the true customer needs and win in the marketplace?
Communication plans involve multiple channels
Keep key people informed and head off resistance on your project.
The Art of Storytelling in Strategy
Simply put, a narrative is a story. And like any good story, it engages the reader in the why, the how and the what.
stakeholders
Taking the time to thoroughly analyze who your stakeholders are and what their issues may be is essential to project success.
DataMasters
Are you interested in building your data analytics capability? Then DataMaster is for you.
silo-ed thinking often happens without a business system in place
Performance excellence is designed to break down silo-ed thinking.
business systems help you meet targets
A business system is designed to connect all of an organization’s intricate parts and interrelated steps.
Performance Excellence needs a holistic approach
With a long history in performance excellence, we believe in a holistic approach. Learn about our framework and how it compares.
teams can use cause-and-effect diagrams to brainstorm possible causes
The cause-and-effect diagram, or fishbone diagram, helps teams brainstorm and capture possible causes to a problem.
Don't Put the Analysis Before the Hypothesis
Too many businesses have become technology-oriented rather than problem-and-solution oriented.
Team using an affinity diagram exercise to brainstorm and affinitize ideas
Affinity diagrams, sometimes called the KJ method, are one of the most useful tools for organizing and displaying brainstormed inputs.
Recommend books for inspiring great leadership in 2016
Read these books recommended by Lean Methods Group CEO David Silverstein to inspire great leadership in 2016.
Getting better at strategy involves knowledge, insights and intuition
A strategic thinker learns how to plan for what is possible and to be prepared to react to the improbable.
Lean Agile Scrum Masters lead teams to produce working software faster
Lean Agile provides a solid framework for developing value-added solutions. Learn about the program and the certification.
Using a decision tree and shared language to understand an opportunity and what project to run
A simple decision tree and the consistent use of language can drive the required shared understanding of a strategic initiative.
People starting a value stream mapping exercise
The value stream map is a simple yet effective tool to identify issues preventing an efficient, value-added process.
A coach keeps you motivated to reach your full potential
Everyone needs a coach at some point to cheer them on and reach their full potential.
Lean Masters graduate prepared to lead continuous improvement efforts
Lean Masters are expert leaders of Lean efforts, driving the organization toward the future state. Explore these FAQs to learn more.
Lean Leader coaching team members
Lean Leaders embrace and champion continuous improvement throughout their organization. Learn more about the role and program.
Black Belt leading a team meeting
Black Belts are change agents and dedicated problem solvers. Learn about their role and what you can expect from our program.
Green Belt doing data analysis
Green Belts carry Lean Six Sigma deeper into the organization. Explore the Green Belt role and what you can expect from our program.
classroom
Interested in ASQ certification? Read this comparison of the Lean Methods Group and ASQ Green and Black Belt certification exams.
Mining the Business Model for Innovation Opportunities
To create long-lasting competitive advantage, look across your business model for innovation opportunities.
six sigma world cloud
Six Sigma is a data-driven problem solving methodology that becomes part of long-term cultural transformation.
value stream mapping / process mapping
A powerful problem solving methodology, Lean empowers employees to strive for a culture of continuous improvement.
One misconception of Hoshin is that it creates a lot of paperwork
Don't let these three misconceptions stand in your way of exploring an effective method for your strategic planning and execution.
Considerations for eLearning options
To help demystify the decision-making process, our team pulled out a short list of things to consider when comparing eLearning courses.
Master Black Belts
If you're thinking of becoming a Master Black Belt or advancing the skills of your team, explore these resources and FAQs to lean more.
Bob Norris
No matter your business, listening to the customer is essential for success. Find out how to listen better and grow your business.
Creative Lightbulb
All people can be creative—in their own way. See for yourself in these examples based on the Kirton Adaption-Innovation Theory.
Library book choices
Start the new year out right by making a plan to read more. Here are some recommended reads to get you started.
Explore the structured approach of Rapid Innovation Cycles to bring a repeatable process—and higher success rate—to innovation.
Bob Norris
Business leaders at any level agree: Managing change is critical for success in any improvement or transformation effort.
Bright idea light bulb
Try these seven simple, effective innovation tools in your next improvement project.
Overwhelming questions cause confusion
Success is typically elusive when all elements of strategy are not considered in the mix.
chess board
To develop a sound business strategy, we must place equal emphasis on the creation and execution of strategy.
Hail a Taxi in the city
See how start-ups have applied process innovation to provide a better solution for both the passenger and the driver.
Kids in classroom raising hands
As you’ll see from this classroom, you can improve comprehension and retention by appealing to different types of intelligence.
Cogs/wheels coming together
Innovation is the key competency—the most important skill set—of strategically driven enterprises.
7 Steps of Hoshin Planning
Discover a systematic method of strategic planning and managing progress toward achieving your strategic goals.
Rocky turbulant white water
The value in a plan is not the plan itself—it’s the planning that went into it. Good planning means we are ready…for anything.
Questions on paper
Companies often pick and choose only the parts they want to use, developing metrics with no plan to make them actionable.
Business tem members jumping with excitement
Without all six system factors in place, successful transformational change is unlikely.
Bullseye hit the target
Operational Excellence plays a role in ensuring your strategic plan is being executed by the entire organization.
Birdseye view from the mountaintop with telescope
How many times have we heard it? “We had a good strategy, but we didn’t manage the change very well.”
Roads intertwined causing confusion
The published evidence is overwhelming: Innovation is a key driver both for growth and for the continued adaptation of businesses.
Streamlined boat rowing on the water
Have you ever wondered why it is so easy for improved processes to go back to how they were performing before improvement?
Team meeting with full interaction
Leading a Lean kaizen event using the SCORE methodology is a significant opportunity to make demonstrative organizational improvement.
Light a match domino effect
While growth is the No. 1 priority for most CEOs, roughly 90 percent of companies fail in sustaining growth over the long-term.
High speed bullet train in tunnel bridge
We are convinced: Your company is missing an opportunity if ethnography is not among your methodologies to gather insight.
Thought process illustration
When we play, we create fresh and new meanings expressing our creativity and the diversity of our problem solving styles.
teamwork lightbulb illustration
The key to tapping into this creativity is understanding that our approaches to creativity differ in terms of level and style.
balancing act with rocks
While perfecting a current process is sometimes necessary, at other times it’s more important to explore innovative opportunities.
People lined up with questions
While customers have a key place in formulating our innovation strategy, many VOC gathering processes are flawed or misdirected.
Waiting impatiently while she chats
Read this title and you’re sure to think, “No kidding," but it's about more than people respecting each other—it's about the process.
Group of business people laughing around computer
Change sees experts come and go, theories develop and evolve, yet few organizations are ever satisfied with their change efforts.
4 Classes of Problem Solving
Every improvement or innovation is the result of solving some important problem.
Businessman with boxing gloves
Far too many cases, Black Belts, Champions and other Six Sigma professionals have arguably become the enemies of needed change.
Busy city street in fast motion
Since the beginning of time, the ability to solve problems has been synonymous with competitive advantage.
Businessman working on futuristic computer
As society, technology and organizations have evolved, so too have the methods, tools and techniques of problem solving.