Sustaining Lean Six Sigma Beyond the Honeymoon Phase
I sometimes say that starting a lean journey is like starting a marriage. In the first few months, the honeymoon phase, we are super-motivated and very disciplined about keeping the fire alive, whether it is lean or our new marriage. We have that "lovin' feeling." But then, reality sets in and the going gets a little tougher.
Perhaps you have completed a 5S project, but now you realize it is time to take a deeper dive into your operations. Perhaps you are starting to realize how hard it is to get people to let go of old habits and learn new ones. I remind my clients that, just as in a marriage, it is important to push through challenges - to rekindle that "lovin' feeling."
Try to find something to anchor you back to those early, happy feelings: before and after photos of 5S, memories of lean team experiences or pictures of freshly organized cabinets. I hope they remind you how far you have come and help motivate you to push on towards more good feelings.
I look forward to your comments.