Many of us process improvement types have a strange view of the world. We see everything around us as slow, ineffective, or just plain broken. The world would be a happier place if, and only if, we could just fix everything! It's a pretty glum way of looking at things, but there's a strange beauty to this view nonetheless. It gives us Lean Practitioners the fire to work tirelessly on everything around us and thus perfect our craft. It's a great path to deepen our skills. Truth be told, this was me for a very long time. As the years passed, the wonderful effect of the PDCA cycle yielded a new wisdom. Yes, everything can always be improved. That said, not everything that can be improved is a problem. The missing piece is your overall objective. Once you set an overall objective, only the challenges in your way are problems worth addressing. Everything else, is just a distraction. So, the next time you decide to put on your process improvement gloves, ask yourself, is that problem even your way? What do you think? How do you organize your teams to only solve the problems that matter?
Companies deliver value to their customers through a myriad of interconnected processes. In order to serve our customers better, we need to keep improving our processes. Unfortunately, not all areas of our business have the same aptitude for change. Some parts evolve easily, while others resist even the smallest improvement. In other words, every area of a business has an inherent aptitude for change . I called this aptitude Process Fitness . How do you elevate process fitness? The short answer is, practice. Find yourself a coach, and start the journey of practice. There's nothing to lose, and everything to gain.