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continuous improvement culture The dynamic strength of an organization is what is crucial in achieving that desirable competitive edge. It may sound like management language to a small business owner or hard work to a senior leader of a large organization. Still, it plays a vital role in sealing the successful future of any business.
The optimal scenario for a business leader is to have customers who are happy with the service or product, employees who are happy and satisfied with their work lives, and healthy financial returns that make all shareholders smile with their ears.
I have been coaching and training business leaders for continual improvement for over a decade. Although each visit is specific to an organization, there are common themes for organizing and leading continuous improvement, regardless of the organization’s size, industry, or location.
What is continuous improvement?
Continuous improvement is an organizational culture where everyone works continuously to improve all aspects of the business. The goal of Any Workday is to delight the customer and provide consistently high quality services. These include:
Innovation as a constant lighthouse
cost effective operation
A low-waste culture of time, resources and money
Employees who naturally want better. Identifying a failure or problem, they will determine the root cause, and act to correct and rectify it.
Fast, complex processes that are easy to understand and follow
Let’s take an airline as an example. Most of us love to travel. If we fly with an airline with a continual improvement culture, then from booking the flight to reaching our destination, our experience will be very smooth and joyful. We will be skipping via the jetway.
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what does it take?
Continuous improvement is a journey. It takes time, planning, dedication, perseverance and a certain pattern of leadership behavior.
research Research by the University of Oxford and EY teams has found that a human-centered approach doubles the success of an improvement journey. Presence – or lack thereof – will increase or decrease efforts. Here are five key tips for building a continuous improvement culture for long-term success.
1. Look for Opportunities for Improvement
Sometimes the opportunity may be obvious, and other times, we need to discover it. Here are some common opportunity search activities:
Ask your customers.
Listen to your employees. He has the most prominent insight.
Examine business processes, and explore opportunities to eliminate steps.
A customer complaint is gold! I vividly remember the blank look of a business owner when I first mentioned it. What a great source of knowing your customer. Not understanding what the customer wants is like taking an airline passenger to the wrong destination, because no one knows where the desired destination is.
2. Prepare for Improvement
You got an opportunity to improve; It is time to create an exciting road map that highlights the major activities. Some examples of preparatory activities include:
Develop a structure that promotes shared ownership across the leadership chain. It is not about a single hero, but about a collaborative team.
Build a Reformed Tribe (Champions and Experts) to spark the path.
Invest in training (ie, leading change, project management, innovation, improvement tools, etc.).
Using the example of air travel, all players – for each process – must be efficient and clear about their roles. If not, your luggage can be headed to McMurdo Station, Antarctica.
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3. Measure Improvement
A dedicated focus on measurement and improvement metrics will help parade or stumble your quality focus. For example, a large hospital management team was attempting to deal with their long wait times at an outpatient clinic. Their goal was to “reduce the average wait time by at least 50%”.
A 50% reduction sounds like a good improvement result. I asked, “Still?” One manager replied, tilting his head to one side, “Our patients will still be waiting.” If that is the case, then a 50% reduction should not be the end goal.
Here’s a quality and patient-focused example:
target: “Patients will be seen by a healthcare provider within 15 minutes of arriving at the outpatient clinic on Saturday.”
Improvement Metrics: “We will reduce the average wait time for Saturday clinics from three hours to 15 minutes in six months.”
The more specific and meaningful the metrics are, the better the customer experience.
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4. Provide Corrections
nobody is here Best method, bus Correct One for Need: A bite-sized improvement approach or an incremental, yet big change. The sky’s the limit when trying to woo customers. For an airline customer, this could mean enjoying a first-class experience no matter where they sit.
5. Increase proliferation and improvement
Once the idea turns into an innovative improvement, explore further opportunities to implement, spread or enhance it. There is no need to reinvent the wheel. If you already have, see where else it might make a difference. The training investment is valuable, as employees will have an improvement mindset and apply their knowledge to other areas.
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Whether for the small business owner, senior leader of a large organization, or an airline manager, a continuous improvement focus will begin a transformational journey that you, your employees, and your organization will continually seek to grow for the better.
The focus on consistently delighting the customer will drive increased loyalty and revenue. Increase in revenue will spur investment in innovation, engaged workforce and growth. Efficient and happy employees will make fewer mistakes and provide efficient and cost-effective service. Efficient operation will continue to delight the customer, and so on. Such a dazzling competitive edge circle! Enjoy flying and traveling in a wondrous world of continuous improvement.