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12 Common Mistakes to Avoid

Advanced quality methods such as Lean-Six Sigma have much to offer healthcare. Then why is it that there are more failures than success? Below is a list of the 12 most common errors senior leaders make when introducing Lean-Six Sigma to their organization.

  1. Senior leaders view Lean-Six Sigma as a training exercise alone.
  2. Leaders fail to design an adequate Accountability structure suitable for performance improvement.
  3. Leadership's over-reliance of benchmarking and productivity measures as a solution when neither offers solutions nor insights that tell managers what to improve.
  4. Senior leaders combine the goal setting step and identification of solutions into one step rather than establishing the goal first.
  5. Leaders rely on total system redesign
  6. Lean-Six Sigma is not tailored to healthcare and is introduced with all the industrial jargon and potentially alienates clinical staff
  7. Leadership allows the methodical data driven methods of Six Sigma (DMAIC) to slow down progress and create analysis paralysis. The result is analysis is valued over implementation and action.
  8. Leaders and managers foster an over reliance of best practices rather than develop solutions that work in their facility.
  9. Leaders fail to create a framework for prioritizing and separating the urgent from the strategically important.
  10. Leadership does identify resources and assign accountability for a communication plan. It involves a failure to launch a sustained communication effort.
  11. Leadership fails to establish a firm expectation of an ROI and a deliberately create a mechanism to tracking tangible gains in performance.
  12. Leadership does not place the responsibility for change with the process owner rather places accountability solely on the performance improvement department of Black Belts to drive change.