What Does "Cyber Dust" Have To Do With Process Change?
Step back in time with me to a simpler and slower time – 1970. It had been less than one year since man first set foot on the moon, gas was .54/gallon and the DOW reached a whopping high of 908. We were many years away from the internet, cell phones, tablets, DVRs, flat-panel televisions, and still one year away from Starbucks being founded. While that... Read more
May 3, 2016
What Beer and Process Change Have in Common
Beer can teach us something about successful process change because beer is actually a great metaphor for corporate cultures. Here's why.
March 29, 2016
How to Change Processes and Influence People
We all use influence skills daily, ranging from steering your friends toward seeing a certain movie, to getting your kids to eat their broccoli, to persuading that guy down the hall who doesn’t report to you to start using your new process. Columnist Jeff Cole explores tactics you can use to gain influence within your organization.
February 10, 2016
Three Times When Process Change Can Make Things Worse
In Op-ex methods like lean and six sigma, the emphasis is always on process improvement. Improvement, however, is simply a code word for change. Hard to make a case against continual improvement, but there are times when changing a process is the wrong thing to do! Several cases in point: Case 1: Whoops – Wrong Process! One firm sold supermarket point of sale terminals and provided... Read more
January 11, 2016
Three Epic Change Failures (And What We Can Learn From Them)
Ever launched a process change only to have it blow right back in your face? If not, it’s awesome to be you. If you have experienced change blowback, there is something to be said for having a failure (hopefully not epic) sometime during your career – you will feel the pain and that will alter your DNA such that you will never make that same mistake again. Afterward, you may... Read more
December 7, 2015
The Concentric Circles of Awareness – Which Zone are You In?
In 1970, when Alvin Toffler wrote Future Shock, he defined it roughly as "too much change in too little time". 45 years later we certainly have no shortage of changes hitting us daily. You go to look at the morning news on the flat, rectangular device of your choice only to get sprayed in the face with a cyber-blast of 0s and 1s that, when translated, equate to changes large and small. Nice... Read more
November 10, 2015
Surprising Internet Secret Revealed for Better Process Change
Have you ever heard this ad? "They laughed when I sat down at the piano - but when I started to play!…" If it sounds familiar, it may be because AdAge declared it to be arguably the best advertising headline in the 20th century. It was written in 1925 by copywriter John Caples back when something called "direct mail" and lengthy, entertaining sales letters were staples of marketing (... Read more
October 4, 2015
Culture is What Happens When No One is Looking…
Paper or plastic? How many times have we all heard that at the market? When it comes to implementing methods like Lean or Six Sigma, we might ask a somewhat similar question: "Stapled or Woven?" The road to great success is never smooth – it is full of bumps, pot-holes, and guys on the side of the road throwing things at you. If you simply staple efforts like Lean Six Sigma onto the... Read more
September 6, 2015
3 Process Change Lessons from Dogs
Are you a pet lover? I’m more of a dog guy and have enjoyed their friendship my whole life. You already know you can teach dogs all kinds of tricks. Did you know, however, they have something to teach us when it comes to process change? We have two dogs. Leo is a pure-bred toy poodle my wife found at a specialty breeder. Logan is a Maltese-mix rescue dog. He was scared and near... Read more
August 2, 2015
Want Better Change? Don’t Eat the Marshmallows!
If you’re looking for a sure-fire recipe for an ulcer, I’ve got just the ticket – accept a job in a company where you have to initiate any sort of change. Better yet – be on the receiving end. Accept any job anywhere and try to go for more than two weeks without some email, text, tweet, manager, or anonymous staff guy from corporate bounding out of left field to smack... Read more
May 4, 2015