Newsletter – October, 2016

On My Mind
A new improvement or innovation idea from an employee is a precious thing, but sometimes it “doesn’t fit” with the organization’s strategy or culture. There is a new idea dissonance in this situation. If you want more ideas from employees, then don’t summarily dismiss and discard these kinds of ideas. A better approach is to either (1) Place the idea in a Parking Lot (database) that is periodically reviewed or (2) Launch a Discovery Team to further explore the idea. Sometimes a “misfit idea” is necessary for a radical breakthrough in performance or an organization’s survival and so you must be careful not to encourage only “in the box” thinking. In other words, don’t be afraid of new idea dissonance.

Interesting Stories
The Eighth Annual Advanced Strategic Improvement Practices Conference was held October 6, 2016 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska, MN. There were twelve presentations each related to one of four themes: Strategy, Analytics, Innovation, and Lean Six Sigma. Here was the line-up of presenters: Linda Nelson and Rebecca Budimlija from the MN Department of Human Services presented on CI Portfolio Planning; Jeff Swanson of the MN Department of Human Services presented on Rapid Response Deliverable; Dr. William C. Rupp formerly of the Mayo Clinic presented on Leading Strategic Improvement; Scott Martens from the Carlson School of Management presented on Innovation Roadmaps; Kelly Buckentine from The Opus Group presented on The Culture of Innovation at The Opus Group; Michael Venker from the Executive Solutions Center presented on Hardwiring Business Process Management in the Organization; Karen Kingsland from the Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries presented on Lean Innovation at the Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries; Dale Godbout from Hormel Foods presented on Lean at Hormel Foods; David Badger from Loram Maintenance of Way presented on The Lean Six Sigma Journey at Loram; Sheila Reger from the University of Minnesota Office of Human Resources presented on Kaizen Blitzing in HR; Charles A. Liedtke, Ph.D. from Strategic Improvement Systems, LLC presented on Quality, Analytics, and Big Data; and Eric Gamble from IBM presented on The Cognitive Era & Analytics.

Company News
The two final 2016 Strategic Improvement Systems, LLC public events have been scheduled. The Continuous Improvement Deployment Planning workshop will be held November 30, 2016 at the Crowne Plaza in Plymouth, MN. The workshop on How to Lead a Successful Kaizen Event will be held December 6, 2016 also at the Crowne Plaza in Plymouth, MN. You can email Charles at to register or if you have any questions.

Intriguing Reads
It has been eight months since my research report on Quality, Analytics, & Big Data was published and the response has been almost overwhelming and gratifying. The analytics movement is here to stay and sometimes beautiful things happen when you integrate as was the case when I integrated Quality, Analytics, and Big Data. If you haven’t read the report yet, then please give it a try. It is available for free on the RESEARCH page of this website.