Improvement Insights Blog
2020 New Years Resolution Part 1 – Learn One Tool Per Month
Many people tell us that they have QI Macros, but they don’t know how to use it. Make a resolution to learn how! Here are my suggestions.
“Hi, I’m Jay Arthur and… it’s 2020. How did that happen? A new year; a new decade. Seems like just yesterday everybody was worried about Y2K. Somebody out there is thinking, “What’s Y2K?” That was a thing that happened back in the year 2000… you probably forgot all about it, but I’ve been at this for over twenty years now in the software field around Quality Improvement, so I’ve seen a lot of things.
“Now one of the things that I keep finding when we go talk to people at conferences is that their IT department installed QI Macros for their end users, but then they didn’t tell [the end users] how to go learn anything about it. They didn’t tell them, “Hey. you can go to the QI Macros website, click on the [‘Free Training’ button] and you can learn every step there is: every tool, everything online. It’s all there 24/7, 365, so you can go learn how to use QI Macros.
“So I’d like to suggest that you make a New Year’s Resolution: Learn one new tool every month this year – one tool. Carve out an hour or so just to learn one tool. We have lots of sample data out there so you can learn how to do charts for healthcare, manufacturing, aerospace, banking… just all kinds of stuff, all right? That will help you figure out when to use some of these charts.
“Now, if you don’t know where to start, start with an XmR chart (an Individuals and Moving Range chart). The reason I say that is because Donald Wheeler calls it “the Swiss Army knife of control charts.” You can use it all kinds of places for all kinds of things. So go on and learn the XmR chart. That’s the first thing you’re going to need anyway to make improvements. Then based on that, you’ll know how to do all the other control charts. Learn that one control chart.
“Then learn the Pareto chart, because Pareto charts are what help you narrow your focus down to the four percent of any business that’s producing half of the waste and rework. Find the four percent, fix that, and 50 percent of your waste or rework will vanish. Profits soar, productivity soars, people are happier… in health care, fewer patients are injured or harmed. This is all good, very easy.
“Learn how to use the Pareto chart – that’s February, right? Then in March, go out and learn how to use the Fishbone Diagram, because we have an automated Fishbone Diagram. You can learn how to follow the head of the fish and put in all the little “why-why-why”s and start practicing Root Cause Analysis. I have some good videos on how that works, so if you don’t know how to do Root Cause Analysis, go watch my videos and you’ll learn, all right?
“Then continue… you might want Countermeasures, you might want Action Plans, you might want Value Stream Maps, you might want to learn something [else]. Here’s the advanced technology for Lean: learn how to use Post-It notes to create Value Streams. Too easy! Go practice that; do that with a team, do it on your own in your private room so you don’t feel stupid when you do it the first time. That’s something I would do.
“So those are some things – go out there and learn one new tool every month for the rest of this year. There’s a New Year’s Resolution. You can spend an hour, learn a lot, and become a lot more productive in the Quality Improvement arena.
“Let’s go out and let’s create a hassle-free America, a hassle-free world. Let’s go out and improve something this week. ”