HPS Consortium Update
 April 2019


In Response to 'I am Busy'

 I am ‘busy’ is a common response in many organizations when we talk about the current level of activity.   ‘Busy’ can override many good intentions including what we should actually be working on to improve our effectiveness.    
The definition of ‘busy’ is being full of activity, full of distraction or intrusively active.    Sometimes our humans have a lot of work to do, other times it is an excuse for those that may not want to engage in certain types of work.  If you want to make ‘busy’ the newest four letter word in your organization, here are a few questions you want to ask? If the answer is no to any of these, you may have a ‘busy’ problem.
Have we eliminated recurring crisis?  – These are events that consistently take our time that we accept as normal course of business?  (Stressful month ends? Last minute preparations for certifications? The pain of year-end inventory?) 
Do we have good job design? – Work is not always designed well to allow us to get good results.  Have we eliminated Do work arounds, poor methods and Macgyver tools?   Do we organize our people well to execute the work? Do we allow for ineffective work habits?
Do we provide focus, good information and effective feedback?–  We may not always have direction on what we should be working on that is important or have feedback that allows us to improve.  What does a good day look like? How do you know you had a good day? What do we need to do to make it a good day every day? What are we doing about it? What is important to our customers? (The 5 questions to organizational alignment are a good place to start to access alignment and focus).
Have we eliminated non-customer focused activities?– Sometimes we work on activities that do not support our customers or our core. What initiatives add value for the customer and core? What is our capacity to complete the initiatives? How may can we work on as an organization?  
What can we start doing to be less busy?  In our March 21st Transform event - Redefining Busy, we used a design thinking approach to develop experiments to solve the busy problem.  Here are a couple of experiments from the event that you can try.

Tier 4 Leadership - Create a climate where the truth is heard.

I am re-reading Jim Collins classic book ‘Good to Great’.   The premise of the book is that Good is the enemy of Great and that is why we have so little that becomes great.    
We don’t have great schools, principally because we have good schools. We don’t have great hosptitals, principly because we have good hospitals.    Few people attain great lives, in large part because it is just so easy to settle for a good life.   The vast majority of organizations never become great, precisely because the vast majority become quite good – and that is their main problem.   
This supports the the fact that organizations that develop a focus on Continuous Improvement have less than 5% chance of achieving long term success and sustaining improvements.  

To make this transformation and to build an organization that excels at problem solving, organizations must confront the brutal facts and at the same time, never losing faith that we can achieve greatness.  
Confronting the brutal facts requires a number of leadership conditions:
  1. Lead with questions, not answers
  2. Engage in dialogue and debate, not coercion
  3. Conduct pre and post mortums without blame and maintain accountability
  4. Through our management systems, build in warning mechanisms that turn information into information that can not be ignored 
How well does you organization measure up to the conditions?
Truly great organizations have disciplined people, who engage in disciplined thought, who take disciplined action.  We need to ensure we do not settle merely for good.
Upcoming Leveraged Learning Events
Accelerate WWCC 
May 29: Plan. Execute. Think. - Community Support Connections - Kitchener

Accelerate HPM 
June 4: Engaging Non-Production Teams Through Control Boards - Tremco - Toronto

Accelerate AfEE 
June 6: Best Practice in Problem Solving - Baylis Medical - Mississauga 

Accelerated CIA  
June 12: Standards, Standardized Work & Accountability - Aeryon Labs

May 22 : From Training to Development  - Crystal Fountains - Vaughn

June 18:  Leadership Summit 2019 - Milton. 

Let me know what you would like to see at this year's summit - Leadership Summit Survey

For more information and to register - contact us at info@hpsinc.ca