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From Fire Fighting to True Continuous Improvement (1 Day Class)

Organizations in all the major sectors from Healthcare to Manufacturing deal with problems day in and day out. Many times the solutions become Band-Aids to problems that are never completely solved. The organization becomes very proficient at "Fire Fighting" but the problems keep coming back. In order for an organization to move from "Fire Fighting" to true continuous improvement everybody in the organization from leadership to the front line will have to become engaged in a common problem solving process.

This workshop is an introduction into A-3 / PDCA problem solving.  Workshop participants learn the thinking and practice of PDCA by doing.   We ask each participant to come to the workshop with a problem that they would like to use as a test case to explore and learn new ways of thinking about how to solve problems.

The two pillars of the LEI Transformational model - House of Lean are Process and Capability. Leaning the process of how problems are solved and developing the capability at every level of the organization to use the problems solving process is a good launching point into Transformation.  This workshop is designed to start the journey.


As a Lean Transformation creates awareness of the problems that exist in the current state of organizations there is a large inventory of problems that need to be solved.  This workshop is designed to help the attendees learn to select problems that can be quickly solved and follow a methodology that will build the discipline of PDCA and solving problems to the root cause. 

Workshop Outline:

  • Starting an A-3
  • The importance of background and current state in defining the problem to be solved
  • The concept of clear responsibility as it impacts problem solving
  • How to expand your understanding and coaching other through “humble inquiry”
  • Problem breakdown and analysis
  • Design of counter measures and rapid cycles of learning (rapid learning experiments)
  • PDCA thinking and creating an understanding of learning your way into solving problems

Learning Objectives: - Following this session, participants will be able to:

  • Further enhance the use of PDCA / A-3  to improve processes and solve problems
  • Transition the most likely cause of a problem into a countermeasure
  • Develop a "Rapid Learning Experiment" for testing a Countermeasure
  • Be ready to begin A-3 problems solving at their organization

Who Should Attend?

  • People starting there Lean journey looking for a process to solve problems
  • Organizations looking to begin to introduce a standard problem solving process
  • Lean Practitioners struggling to get A-3 thinking started with their organizations 

Workshop Suggestions:
To maximize your learning experience we recommend that prior to attending this program you take following workshops or have a good understanding of the concepts presented within them.
Suggested Reading for this Workshop:
This program is offered at customer facilities only, as an on-site workshop. If you have any questions or want to bring this workshop to your organization, please contact us at info@lean.org or 617.871.2900.