When Continuous Improvement Lacks Strategy: Doing things right or Doing the right things?

作者:Kepner-Tregoe的Kevin Duffy

Organizations over the past decade have invested millions, if not billions, of dollars in continuous improvement programs with the aim of removing waste and, ultimately, cost from their operations. Yet through a lack of consideration to strategic alignment they can end up wasting significant amounts of continuous improvement resources thereby undermining the philosophy and intent of the programs.

A key issue we observe in many organizations today is that their continuous improvement programs have become increasingly disconnected from the organization’s strategy and have evolved as standalone entities focused on efficiencies and cost. They are, therefore, much more focused on the operational context— “doing things right” (better)—rather than on the strategic context—“doing the right things”—which means finding solutions to concerns related to products and markets.

Executives are measured by how effectively their organization’s strategy is executed. And while the increased profits that come from an effective continuous improvement implementation are welcomed, it is rare that an organization can save its way to growth and glory without also enhancing its capabilities to innovate and expand.

To align operational initiatives with strategic goals, continuous improvement must be targeted at areas deemed to be of strategic importance. This is critical to the successful execution of the organization’s strategy.

一个尺寸的持续改进并不适合组织的所有部分。在制造环境中需要的那种日常纪律在研发中可能是不必要的,甚至是破坏性的。毋庸置疑,在产品和服务的开发中制定纪律是很重要的,但不能因此而阻碍或压制组织竞争优势来源的创造力。

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