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Sensible Project Manager Hangout 16 – Techniques for Continuous Improvement

Sensible Project Manager Hangout 16 – Techniques for Continuous Improvement

“Techniques for Continuous Improvement” was the topic for the 16th hangout of the Sensible Project Manager Hangout Community. In this community of project managers and others who enjoy discussing project manager topics, we have a weekly hangout which is hosted via Google+ Hangout. These hangouts are held each Friday at 9:00am pacific time.

During the hangout we discussed continuous improvement and techniques to implement in our projects and work environment.  This topic was suggested in the community by Alan Dayley who along with Hala Saleh joined me in the hangout.  Once again the #PMChat community on Twitter joined in on the discussion and provided a lot of great interactive discussions.

Some of the key points that were discussed during the hangout are as follows:

  • Definition of  Continuous Improvement is “An ongoing effort to improve products, services, and processes”.  Alan added to this definition the importance of adding people to the definition.
  • History – we discussed a little about the history of Continuous Improvement.  Hala actually had quite a bit of knowledge about the history.
  • Kaizen –  (the translation of kai (“change”) zen (“good”) is “improvement”). This method became famous from Imai’s 1986 book Kaizen: The Key To Japan’s Competitive Success
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • LinkedIn
    • Google+
    • Pinterest
    • Components of Kaizen include the following:
      • Teamwork
      • Discipline
      • Morale
      • Quality
      • Continuous Suggestions for Improvement
  • GQM Framework – is a framework that Alan mentioned for developing metrics which are of value.  Using this methodology, you define a goal you want to measure, identify a question you ask to identify when you reach the goal, then create a metric to measure to answer the question which fulfills the goal.
    • G = Goal
    • Q = Question
    • M = Metric

You can read more about GQM here:

  • Value Stream Mapping
    • Value Stream Mapping is a technique used in the lean community.
    • Map out the steps or streams of value that is part of a process and work to improve those streams.
    • Make sure to include the people who perform the work to build the value stream.

You can read more about Value Stream Mapping here:


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