Over the last 5 years I have invested considerable time & energy in trying to become a skilled continuous improvement practitioner. I am a strong believer in continual learning via direct deployment experience.

Over this same period, continuous improvement has become a main-stream product. Any business without an Operational Excellence, Process Improvement, Process Excellence, Continual Improvement (and so on) capability is now way behind the curve. This dramatic growth has brought a large increase in the number of CI professionals.

Here is the point; these days I have conversations with other CI professionals that make me wonder I have learnt the right things, things like:

  • The scientific way of experimenting is to change one factor at a time
  • The most important factor in sampling is population size
  • Reducing overall process time has nothing to do with becoming Lean

Where did I go wrong? Case in point is the ex-GE Master Black Belt. Now I don’t like to generalise and easily the best MBB I have ever met was from GE, but my other experiences have not been so good. Ever had to explain proportion tests and what a chi-square test does to a ex-GE MBB?

How to conclude? Maybe we could agree a single version of the truth and certify against this? Maybe it’s just part of the evolution of CI? I just don’t know. But I feel the CI world changing.

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