Turning the Question Back on Ourselves

Part of the improvement process is to ask, “What problems, issues or opportunities are there?”

This seems like a very good question to ask.  A question that would get to the root of what can be done to improve.  People start to give answer after answer about problems and issues.  Notes are taken.  Work is assigned.

Not  until recently have I taken the time to look at the responses given to the question above.  Closer examination shows a large portion of the responses are pointing the finger outwardly.  We could do that if leadership does this.  We could have lower costs if our customers would let us design our relationship.  We could have a faster changeover if management would let us buy the newest equipment.

These are TRAPS!  Traps that I have fallen into myself. Traps that lead us to try and justify new equipment that may not be needed or spend energy convincing leadership or customers to do something different so we can stay the same.  In the end, the improvement isn’t made or it is not nearly as significant as it could have been.

We have to turn the question around on ourselves.  Ask what can we do to help leadership help us?  What can we do within the parameters of our relationship with the customer and still deliver on their needs?  How can we get the same effect of the new equipment without buying the new equipment?

We can’t always point the finger outward.  We have to point the finger inward and try everything we can to get where we want to go.  When we do this well, we get greater improvement and others will respect us more for solving the issue.

Posted on February 27, 2012, in Flip The Thinking, Leadership, People, Problem Solving and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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