Quoteworthy
It’s almost impossible for one person to be completely responsible for improvement; everyone who has a stake in the processes you’re trying to change has to be at the table and part of the discussion.
Amy Locke

Most Recent
Follow Along Pareto Analysis

Pareto analyses separate the vital few from the trivial many. It’s a narrowing tool used by data-driven lean six sigma facilitators to bring focus to a value improvement effort. Steve walks us through an example in today’s Dojo.

7 Phrases for Lean Six Sigma Practitioners to Avoid

This little list is to help lean six sigma (LSS) practitioners communicate more effectively. Communicating is 50-80% of the work in LSS and the concepts are often counterintuitive, so Steve's developed this list to make your life easier—avoid these.

The Cultural Phenomenon of Groupthink

Facilitation is the art of guiding a team through a problem-solving process. It requires a set of skills that can be learned. In this week’s dojo Steve takes on the first of many facilitation topics. This is where we leave the linear process space and enter the equally important but circuitous people space.

How Dermatologists Chris Hull and Mark Eliason are Like Bono and The Edge

If in previous dojo posts, you still haven’t found what you’re looking for, today’s post will satisfy your desire. In it we describe the mysterious ways of Drs. Chris Hull’s and Mark Eliason’s clinic practice. Unless you’re a patient, you can’t witness their clinic, but this post is even better than the real thing.

The Case Against Pie Charts

Why do we like pie charts so much? Because it’s food? Is it the fun colors? Are we soothed by the paradox of an unending cycle implied by something so perfectly complete? Elton John’s lyrics are true, no? “All are agreed as they join the stampede...” pie charts are overused.

Perpetual High Alert Is Not a Safety Plan

When a mistake happens, we promise we will never let it happen again. The problem is that a personal vow doesn’t change the way the system operates. Value engineers Steve Johnson, Cindy Spangler and Will McNett look at common personal incident—backing into the lamppost in your own front yard—as a lens for eliminating risk.

A Look Back at the Project Charter

In this week’s dojo Steve takes a look back at the Project Charter with a dramatic retelling of actual history.

How Utah Shares and Spreads Improvement Using the Value Summary

The Value Summary is the currency of value improvement work at University of Utah Health. It creates a common improvement language through a one-page summary document. It visually guides the improver through our standardized improvement methodology while teaching improvement science principles in real time. The online Value Summary portal creates a forum to share and spread ideas and a path to earn maintenance of certification credit.

Box and Whisker Plots (Part 2)

Part 1 was on how to build a box and whisker plot. In Part 2 we're defining whisker length and visualizing variation within and between the variable groups. This time we're giving you answers to the questions no one has asked.

Box and Whisker Plots (Part 1)

What is a box and whisker plot? Why do I need a box and whisker plot? How do I construct a box and whisker plot (sometimes shortened to “box plot”) in Excel 2013 or lower? It's a day in the deep weeds, dojo folks. Steve heard your questions and has dedicated the next two dojos to giving you all the answers.

Why We Cover Health Care Payment Reform

Why dedicate space to the hot poker that is health law and policy on this website? Context. We are an improvement community. We believe providing context is an act of respect. Talking about "the why" of complex healthcare topics (payment reform included) allows our frontline clinicians and staff to be empowered and informed.

Why Don’t We Teach the Eighth Waste?

The 8th waste is underutilization of employee talent. In this week's post of Steve's Dojo (or continuing Lean Six Sigma education), Steve revisits Taiichi Ohno’s "7 wastes" and answers why he doesn't teach the "8th waste" at University of Utah.