Employee Engagement, and Change Management Part III of III

BY KAMAL SHARMA - 2016-09-23

We had posted about implanting positive behavior This week we are going to primarily focus on how to establish the Kaizen Management System


As we go about creating a cultural change by changing behaviors, it is also important to put an accountability system in place. Accountability is the process of following through with people to ensure that their behaviors and results are in line with agreed upon goals and expectations. Hence we need to establish a Kaizen management system.

There are 3 elements to this.

1. Kaizen support office 

The formation of Kaizen Support Office is of critical importance in coordinating and promoting the transformation. This office has trained personnel who set targets, determines scope of activities and ensure the availability of necessary resources. One major task for this team is the creation of an “Obeya” room which provides cockpit information to anyone, just at a glance, on the roadmap and the progress of the journey so far. Hence accountability in an overall sense is controlled from here.

2. Performance Measurement

An organization that is proceeding towards a journey of operations excellence is very different from a traditional organization. Hence the performance measures that sets goals and expectations have to be necessarily different. Traditional performance measures drive behavior that is contrary to what the organization should pursue.

For example, if we still keep measuring and trying to maximize the production output from an equipment a tendency to produce what maximizes production will result- even though this may not be what the customer requires and will also result in the Muda of inventory.

Hence, all performance measurement for all employees must be redefined to promote the transformational behavior. Please remember the Kaizen principle that we need to understand (and hence measure) the Process that bring about a particular result and not the result alone.

Once we have decided the new set of metrics then this is what must be used to measure performance. This is what forms a part of the visual dashboard in the Obeya room. One more thing implicit in this is that, any old metrics must be “switched off”. If senior managers still keep asking for reports that they are used to, it becomes a big hindrance for change.

3. Daily Gemba Management

The last element about having a kaizen management system is for the transformation taking place at the

Gemba. Here also the changes must take place in the desired direction and must be sustained. Again accountability is required.

The daily Gemba management is a system that provides the ability to sustain and manage the new work

methods and processes. This system allows for the process owners to define, standardize, control and improve the processes within their domain. Deterioration is prevented by making control and improvement the norm.

In an office process the same can generally be achieved by having a visual team board that has all the metrics as well as all standard expectations. The team then monitors itself though this team board.

The elements of daily management:

Nichijo Gemba Kanri

1. Standardization: All elements of 4 M’s (Man, Method, Machine and Materials) must be standardized. As the standard sets the benchmark for expected performance.

2. Visual Control: Here aim is to make the expectations of the standards and the results to be achieved,

transparent by making them visual. The deviation between the standard against actual provides a deviation and this deviation must be controlled.

3. Leader Standard Work: The visual control board must be checked on a routine basis. Hence a leader

standard work is developed to drive behavior towards regularly checking for any deviations and then

finding methods to avoid slippages and even for possibilities for future improvement.

4. Daily Accountability Process: The findings of the leader through the Leader Standard Work are consolidated for action. This process helps to decide about the required steps that are to be taken and by whom.

The resources required to take the actions are provided and target dates for completion set. The process, also monitors the progress of these actions, in follow up meetings. Typically this complete review is of short duration, standing discussions.

In case you missed it, my last post was Employee Engagement, and Change Management Part III of III

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Gemba Kaizen