Home > The Lean Post> 5 Guiding Principles to Accelerate Your Lean Transformation
The Lean Post
Sharing how the world is making things better through lean.

5 Guiding Principles to Accelerate Your Lean Transformation

by Alice Lee
July 27, 2020

5 Guiding Principles to Accelerate Your Lean Transformation

by Alice Lee
July 27, 2020 | Comments (1)

Chief architects for lean transformation have been seeking effective ways of realizing tangible gains for years. That’s why our global team of lean coaches designed their research for our recently published white paper, “Five Guiding Principles to Transform Healthcare," with a goal of seeing patterns across countries and organizations. Such patterns, we believe, will help chief architects accelerate their lean transformation at any level or stage of work.

When we launched this study, we suspected that we had a common point of view, given that all of us use the lean transformation framework in our coaching work, which grounds us in common thinking and approaches. And the more that we explored how each of us applied our thinking and approach to the current situation at eight healthcare organizations in five countries, the more that we started to document what we thought were similar patterns of thinking and behavior. These became the five guiding principles that healthcare (or any, for that matter) organizations can follow to speed up the development of the lean capabilities they need to transform themselves.

Because we did not approach this work from a singular perspective, we were able to step back and see patterns that we might have otherwise missed. Learning to study and reflect together helped us become better coaches. We had to do better and go faster. But above all we were able to formulate some clear principles to guide transformation.

As the work developed we came to call ourselves “tailors,” in the sense of people who customize your clothing. We hope that the primary audience for this paper (chief architects or chief architects in training) will benefit by finding ways to customize the work they are doing based on this resource. Just as tailors will adapt material for each client’s size and shape, so too will those reading this paper apply what works for them for their particular situation.

Here is a list of tips that we developed:

You can download a free copy of the white paper here.

Also, I expand on how the five guiding principles were developed in the WLEI podcast "5 Guiding Principles for Tailoring a Path to Lean Transformation."


What to do next:

  • The author is one of several coaches at LEI working to share lean thinking and practice with organizations and teams. To learn more about how they can help your organization, schedule a time to talk with a lean coach.
  • Learn from top healthcare leaders who are transforming their organizations through lean thinking and practice, including,
    • Lisa Yerian, MD, Chief Improvement Officer at the Cleveland Clinic, and John Shook, senior advisor to the Lean Enterprise Institute 
    • Kimberly Eng, Chief Operating Officer, Lynn Community Health Center, and Kiame Mahaniah, MD, Chief Executive Officer, Lynn Community Health Center
    • Jack Billi, MD, Medical Director, Collaborative Quality Initiatives, and Professor of Medicine, Public Health, and Engineering, University of Michigan
    • Carlos Frederico Pinto, M.D. (aka Dr. Fred); CEO; Instituto de Oncologia do Vale (IOV)

Get more details about and register for the Virtual Lean Learning Experience.


Was this post... Click all that apply
3 people say YES
2 people say YES
2 people say YES
1 person says YES
Related Posts
1 Comment | Post a Comment
Bob Emiliani July 28, 2020

I wrote a critique of the white paper that people may be interested in reading or rebutting. https://bobemiliani.com/critique-of-five-guiding-principles-to-transform-healthcare/

Reply »

Changing Routines
Please include links as plain text URLs only. Do not copy and paste directly from a web page or other document. Doing so may pick up additional HTML that will not function here.
URLs will be converted to functioning links when your comment is displayed on the site.
Here's an example:
See this article for more details: https://www.lean.org/whatslean