TEAM

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When you are part of an organization that is working towards goals, you are part of a team. A team moving toward hitting milestones can sometimes need to generate excitement and motivation while inching toward the goal line. This is why we have acronyms like TEAM. An acronym like TEAM can be used by team […]

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Meeting Seminar Conference Brainstorming Business Concept

Maximize the Effectiveness of Teams

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Everyone’s heard the saying in support of teamwork that two heads are better than one. But once you get the right heads together, how do you turn that group of people into a team?

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The 7 Secrets to Leading Multigenerational Teams

The 7 Secrets to Leading Multigenerational Teams

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A workforce with a variety of generations features a breadth of experience and knowledge that can serve any company well. Be intentional with managing your diverse team to ensure success.

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Icebreaker

How to Break the Ice – Virtually

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Icebreakers can help teams to build community, promote interaction and foster empathy. Some of the go-to icebreakers I have used over the years have translated well into the virtual environment.

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The Secret to Leadership? Enable Joy

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We are all members of teams of one type or another, but have you ever stopped to think about how to lead a team well when you aren’t the boss? There’s a plethora of advice about being a better boss and the like, but how about a team that will only be together for a […]

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Constructive Discord: The Role of Conflict in Building High-performance Teams

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Many well-managed companies struggle with the concept of high-performance work teams. Part of this struggle is operational as decision rights, formerly owned by middle managers, must be delegated to operational teams. Part of this challenge is cultural as building solid teams requires a certain amount of controlled conflict to be successful. It is this cultural […]

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Enhancing GRPI with the Nominal Group and Delphi Techniques

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Within Six Sigma’s change acceleration process, GRPI (goals, roles and responsibilities, process, and interpersonal skills) is a tool for team development. The GRPI model should be used in the following scenarios: When initiating a new team and planning its first steps When a team is not working well and it is not clear why GRPI […]

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The Five Challenges of Standard Work for Knowledge Workers

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The goals of standard work are simple and straightforward. They are to: Provide everyone who performs a task with a well-documented, visual system that guides them through the proper execution of that task. Ensure that everyone performing a task follows a consistent reproducible process that minimizes opportunities for variation and error. Ensure that work flows […]

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Strategies for Better Facilitation and Team Problem Solving

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It is a common process-improvement scenario: After a project team or a work group is formed, members have a series of productive meetings and workshops, but then nothing happens. How many times has it felt like there are great team dynamics in the conference room but when it comes time to execute change, no one […]

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No More Cowboys: Teams for Change

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I have been a Lean and Six Sigma Black Belt for two and a half years and have come to a heartbreaking realization: I’ll never be good at everything. This is not what my teachers expected from me. My Yellow, Green and Black Belt education included a diverse curriculum including a week on statistics and […]

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High-performance Teams: Understanding Team Cohesiveness

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“There is a desire in each of us to invest in things that matter, and to have the organizations in which we work be successful…Our task is to create organizations we believe in…to be part of creating something we care about so we can endure the sacrifice, risk, and adventure that commitment entails. That’s team […]

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Improving the Productivity of a Service Team

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The manufacturing and transactional worlds have long used productivity as a measure of efficiency. Traditionally, a productivity metric has been used for assessing return on investment on machinery to measure the contributions of team members. In the growing service economy where human resources are the biggest driver of costs in the organization, management teams want […]

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Six Qualities of Successful Green Belts

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Many factors play a role in the success of a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt: support of top management, a well-defined and properly scoped project, a solid project team and more. One element that may be overlooked is the qualities of the candidates themselves. Everyone can contribute to continuous improvement efforts, but the Green Belt […]

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Grabbing Hold of the GRPI Model

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The model for team organization known as GRPI (goals, roles and responsibilities, process, and interpersonal skills) began in the field of social science and has since been adopted into Six Sigma’s change acceleration process (CAP) tool kit. Let’s start our discussion of GRPI by establishing the context around CAP. Change Acceleration – The Roots of […]

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Building a Six Sigma Project Team

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If a coach were assembling a basketball team, what criteria would be used to select the players? If an academic team were being selected, what would the criteria be? If the selection of a process improvement team were the objective, what criteria would be used? It seems simple, but it is easy to make simple […]

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Hiring a Lean Mindset

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I was recently asked if I was aware of any research on the advantages of hiring people with a “Lean mindset” vs. those with specific industry experience. My response was, regretfully, that I did not know of any documented research. I was then asked, would I prefer that my company hire people with a “Lean […]

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Building a Six Sigma Project Team

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If you were selecting a basketball team, what criteria would you use to select the players? What about if you were selecting an academic team? If the selection of a process improvement team were the objective, what criteria would you use? The answers to these questions may seem simple, but Belts can sometimes make things […]

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Make It a Team Effort: Involving Employees Can Lead to Lasting Solutions

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Problem solving teams are often confronted with resistance to change. Even if the change is positive, employees are not always willing to embrace the improvements identified through DMAIC projects. However, by involving the employees to solve problems together, instead of providing solutions for them, practitioners can help assure that employees not only buy into process […]

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Taming Human Nature in Six Sigma Projects

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Is human nature undermining your Six Sigma project? It is quite possible. For instance, research shows that people make decisions up to seven seconds before they are even aware they have made them. Once they make a decision, humans are prone to confirmation bias, which leads them to seek out information that backs up that […]

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3 Challenges to Overcome When Developing a Lean Six Sigma Training Curriculum

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During 2008-2009, I led an effort to create an in-house Lean Six Sigma training curriculum in our 34-hospital healthcare system. Not only did my organization want the training to be effective and cost-efficient, but it also needed to help standardize the language used in the deployment as well as the program structure – areas that […]

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Six Sigma Organizational Architecture – Rewards and Recognition

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Six Sigma is a quality methodology that can produce significant benefit to businesses and organizations. Not much text, however, has been written about the structure needed to successfully implement Six Sigma quality within your business or organization. Another article on of Six Sigma Architecture focused on roles and responsibilities of a successful Six Sigma quality […]

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Lean and Six Sigma: Fixing Healthcare a Process at a Time

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With many issues facing the U.S. healthcare system the task of “fixing” it seems insurmountable, but the appropriate implementation With so many different issues facing the U.S. healthcare system the task of “fixing” it can seem insurmountable. Every healthcare executive knows the litany of challenges: rising costs, inadequate insurance coverage, capacity constraints, patient safety concerns, […]

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Successful Six Sigma Project Reviews

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I cannot over emphasize the importance of communication in Six Sigma process improvement projects. As Patrick Waddick stated in his project charter article, “a finely executed Black Belt project can suffer disappointing results if an efficient mechanism is not already in place to ensure that vital information is relayed to those members who need it.” […]

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Building Team Consensus

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The Six Sigma quality methodology almost always requires a Black Belt or Green Belt to lead a team in solving a problem. When teams members interact – and no matter how well the Black or Green Belt can facilitate – opinions of the individual team members will inevitably differ and the team may end up deadlocked, compromising […]

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