This paper has been prepared in support of a webinar presented by Kevin Eyre in March 2013 entitled Thought Leadership in the Area of Lean Culture. S A Partners has an historic interest in the ‘people’ dimension of lean and business improvement. Our interest has driven us to embark on some primary research in this area. Our research is premised on our belief that actions, and the organisational culture that is formed, are the result of the very many small conversations that take place between people throughout the working day. These conversations, consciously or unconsciously, stimulate people to want to, or to not want to, make improvements.
Our research explores the hypothesis that business improvement can be ‘talked into existence’ but is very often ‘talked out of existence’. In this paper we present some of our early findings which we believe are profound for any organisation making a sizeable financial investment in improvement.
The good news is that we can change the way we talk. Changing the way we talk can have a huge impact on our improvement efforts.
The original webinar on which this paper is based is also available to view.