What is truth?

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.

Comments 3

  1. Observer

    CI should also change as its name implies every thing should change.

    But believe me DOE, sampling theory, and process time as a part of lean have not changed.

    As a domain gets popular, it invites every one. As the number of practitioners increase the quality is likely to suffer. In some situations the domain may start attracting more skillful talent. After some saturation the talent chasing these pursuits is going to get weaker.

    The average score in SAT from the top 100 people will be higher than those of top 500 people.

  2. Adam-Lennox

    I hear you.

    The trouble with CI professionals is that we are an odd bunch.
    In some situations (most) the drive and natural inclination of a CI dude or dudette will be to have their own version of what is happening adopted as the right one.
    I can see how this would result in some challenges to the things we hold as "fundaments" or essential truths.

    The biggest head scratchers would come (I guess) when a person who is driven by the pursuit of truth, interacts with someone who is driven by the need to dominate.

  3. Matt

    We all really need to press on and make improvements.

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