Principle of war #8 – Simplicity
Simplicity: Only do the necessary.
Simplicity is how Lean Six Sigma people should think. To eliminate TIM WOODS we only need to look at our processes and ask what is the most simple way to accomplish the task? In fact, process improvement can be defined as “applying simplicity to processes”.
The ISO definition of a process is “any activity or set of activities that use resources to transform inputs into outputs.” When analyzing processes we can categorize individual process steps as either adding value or not adding value, by definition the only steps that can be removed are the non-value adding steps – aka TIM WOODS. The more complexity that exists in process the more opportunity TIM WOODS has to disrupt operations.
Not only is simplicity the thinking we use, it is how we conduct Kaizen activities. I’ve worked for organizations where every improvement was a 5-day Kaizen event. Not all processes or problems require that level of effort. Some events are what we call “just do it!”, meaning (without violating other principles of war) just fix it. No meetings, no time wasted…just make the change.
Simplicity applied to processes and Kaizen tactics.