Believe it or not, sometimes the simplicity of QnEK is tough for people to wrap their minds around. Simply put, a QnEK is an improvement that a person makes to their own work: that they have the authority to do, without having a negative impact on others and costs little to no money. That’s it. That’s as simple as it gets.
Sometimes, people are accustomed to making these types of small improvements. They are just not accustomed to recognizing that they do it. Once they begin to recognize these improvements, they can begin to document and share them. This leads to many other beneficiaries of the improvement as well as improvements on the improvement. This is when the power behind a QnEK program really shows!
Helping people to begin to recognize the improvements they make is enormously important. One of the most successful ways I’ve found to help do this is to actually sit with them while they work. Ask them why they do some of the things they do – and ask if they’ve always done it that way. (We aren’t talking about the people that say “I don’t know why I’m doing it, it’s just the way we’ve always done it.” That’s a different type of person that we’ll talk about another time). So as you sit with a person talking about what they are doing and why they are doing it, you are helping them connect the thought process of making small improvements to the actual improvements they are making. You are helping them to be able to make this connection in the future. As you are having this conversation with them, help them write it down, leading them with questions:
- What was your situation before?
- What is your improvement?
- What is the effect of your change?
I would love to hear some other successful ways you may have been able to help people recognize their improvements – please post for all to share!