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Ready…Fire!…Aim

Ready…Fire!…Aim

Lesson
In the 21st century it is necessary for continuous improvement to become a habit ingrained within organizations. Change today occurs so fast that you are either improving or you are quickly falling behind your peers. But how can organizations and teams establish continuous improvement practices and habits? A key step in continuous improvement is usually the first one – taking action. Begin by realizing that no change effort is ever going to achieve perfection. Over-planning a change loses momentum and interest from the team; another problem will soon develop that pushes the current issue aside. Perfection can be the enemy of “good enough.” "You don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great." ~ Zig Ziglar. In many organizations, people and teams are debilitated by a fear…
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How to Change Things When Change is Hard

How to Change Things When Change is Hard

Review
This is part of an ongoing series of organizational and personal improvement book reviews. If you have read the book already use this as a reminder of key lessons. If you have not read the book and are looking to learn and grow as a leader, this summary will share the basics. Read the entire book to dig deeper. Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard is required reading for any leader of organizational change. Brothers Chip and Dan Heath use recent research on the mind to show how it is possible to unite the two different systems in our heads – the rational mind and the emotional mind – to achieve dramatic results. They share a process you can use to make successful change, whether for yourself…
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Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

Review
This is part of an ongoing series of organizational and personal improvement book reviews. If you have read the book already use this as a reminder of key lessons. If you have not read the book and are looking to learn and grow as a leader, this summary will share the basics. Read the entire book to dig deeper. This month we review Robert Cialdini’s 1984 classic Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. The book is required reading for anybody in marketing and every business leader. Have you ever made a major purchase or important decision under pressure you regretted later? It is likely that your decision was influenced by one of the six principles Cialdini shares in the book. Learn about these six principles and how to avoid being manipulated by them.  …
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Problem Solving to Root Cause

Problem Solving to Root Cause

Lesson
While facilitating an improvement project for a hospital's surgical department recently, our team was presented with a clear opportunity for improvement. Recent data logged during a long day of procedures included three separate surgical cases where the patient's discharge paperwork was incorrect. These three errors were all caught by the surgeon before the patient was discharged, but other patients had reported receiving and following the wrong post-op procedures. The team decided that this issue was a priority to address and the Nursing Director took a leadership role in bringing together the team involved in preparing the pre-op paperwork to review the problem and propose solutions. The team was able to work together to quickly make some significant improvements while learning some core concepts of problem solving. Some of the tools…
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