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December 10, 2018
Ask ACE

Focusing on the three P's is the best way to improve customer outcomes and profit

Steve Musica, president of Lean East, specializes in improving and transforming organizations and teams. Contact him at steve@leaneast.com

The Association for Consulting Expertise (ACE) is a non-profit association of independent consultants who value "Success through Collaboration." The public is welcome to attend its regular meetings to share best practices and engage with industry experts. For more information go to www.consultexpertise.com.

Q: Where should I spend my time and money to improve customer outcomes and profit?

ACE advises: At Lean East, we challenge our clients to think differently about their processes and what their customers value. We know how to get results, and want to help every client we work with become a High Performing Organization (HPO). HPOs thrive in today's interdependent, fast-paced and complex world by understanding their purpose and vision and ensuring that every member of the team is advancing together towards a common goal. Lean East improves service organizations in three key focus areas: People, Processes and Performance.

People First: HPOs create a culture of trust by demonstrating respect and caring for every member of the team. Leadership establishes the direction and ensures alignment toward a common vision. Communication with team members is purposeful and defines measurable goals to ensure accountability to results. Open dialogue, differing opinions and conflict is encouraged to minimize politics and avoid groupthink.

Process Improvement Focused: HPOs deliver customer value with high quality, cost-effective processes. They use Lean Six Sigma or related process improvement tools and concepts to understand the value of each process step, eliminate waste, and support alignment. Every member of the team is encouraged to take the time to solve problems by addressing the root cause. The silos and bureaucracy that doom agility are challenged, while outcomes are improved.

Performance Driven: HPOs have a bias to action and measure important results. The focus is on execution – getting things done. We help HPOs establish a balanced scorecard of SMART goals and stretch goals. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are used to assess processes and address issues before targets are missed. This ensures that the entire team is aligned and measuring what is most important.

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