Improvement Method

Chicago Mentors Improvement Method

Chicago Mentors Improvement Method

I have a unique improvement method that leverages process standards, best-practices, quality tools, complex technology design, and new cutting-edge technologies. The power of this method lies in the combination of people, process, and technology improvement to help you achieve your business goals.

The Entities

  1. Organization
    Organizations have goals. A school may have goals to make it easier for students to learn, motivate students and teachers, better communication and relationship with parents etc. For a technology company it may be providing technology to help customers do something faster and easier, having a work environment that employees like working in etc. The goals are supplemented by guiding principles. For example Google has a guiding principle – “don’t be evil”.
  2. People
    People refers to employees, consultants, board members, vendors, partners, customers, and suppliers at an organization. They all need to be motivated and managed. Techniques include collaboration, communication, change management, and negotiation.
  3. Process
    Process refers to the way things are done at an organization. Example includes admissions process at a school, promotion process at a business, vendor selection process, procurement process etc. People implement and use process. Process or a part of process may be automated with technology.
  4. Technology
    Technology is used to support processes and people for automation, workflow, information retrieval, communication etc. Examples include web site, email, database, programming, prebuilt software etc. Technology implementation and support has a process of its own.

Improvement

Improvement refers to a better way of implementing or managing process, technology, or people. Improvement may mean achieving organizational goals faster, easier, at a lower cost etc. Improvement happens as a result of innovation and/or optimization. Both innovation and optimization have the same goal – improvement – and they are not mutually exclusive and exhaustive.

Its important to cause lot of “little” improvements since they all add up. Little improvements also set up an organization to successfully make bigger improvements.

  1. Training
    Training is essential for updating skills and keeping them current. Training requirements are determined based on organizational goals. A central organizational training policy helps optimize the cost of training. The training implementation itself can be optimized through self-learning, computer-based, cross-training, and train-the-trainer.
  2. Innovation
    Innovation refers to applying existing concepts or technology to improve. Its not an invention.
  3. Optimization
    Optimization includes removing redundant process steps, automating, reducing the lag etc.

Improvement Characteristics

  1. Control
    Once a process has been improved controls may be needed to make sure the improvement stays.
  2. Share
    Improvements must be shared and spread across the organization. This becomes very important for large organizations.
  3. Improve the improved
    People should be expected to make improvements consistently. An improved process should be improved further. This requires an organizational culture that holds people responsible for consistent improvements. This also requires a standard way to measure improvements.

How to Improve Business Processes and Technology

The Improvement Method described above is proven and robust. To customize it for Information Technology,  I leverage a combination of tools & techniques such as –

  • Complex Technology Design,
  • Six Sigma,
  • Capability Maturity Model (CMMI),
  • IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL),
  • Common Business Objectives for IT (COBIT),
  • Technology specific standards, best-practices, and reusable components,
  • Risk Management,
  • Cost-benefit analysis,
  • Decision Analysis and Resolution,
  • Federal Enterprise Architecture (FEA),
  • Business Process Management (BPM),
  • and Enterprise Architecture.