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Scott Schwarz on Never Forget – It is about the Individuals

2 minutes, 27 seconds read

So much of what we talk about when it comes to operational excellence is based on Key Performance Metrics of safety, quality, cost, and on-time delivery. Planning and implementing operational initiatives with a laser focus on these organizational  benefits is good, but can leave out the attention to the individuals inside the organization.

Scott Schwarz made some excellent points around that topic in our recent conversation on The Lean Frontline podcast. He is passionate about the importance of considering the impact on individuals as companies implement organizational change.

When deciding to make Lean Six Sigma your career and build expertise, he emphasizes this focus on the individual: “Anyone who really throws themself out there as wanting to be or aspiring to be a subject matter expert in Lean Six Sigma is to really try to understand the benefits that it brings not just to the greater business, but to the individuals within an organization”

When I asked Scott about leadership and change, he was quick to talk about the importance of culture inside a company, and how that culture can only be changed through the proactive involvement of individuals across the organization.

That means engaging those individuals in ways that benefit them. Ways that make their lives easier.

“Show me all of those things where you’re actually changing culture and making people’s lives better by making their work easier. There’s very few ways of doing that, and Lean is one of those that can do it. If it’s done right.”

Scott was emphatic about doing Lean right, with the respect and focus on individuals.

Our conversation then turned to how to scale this kind of change inside of an organization. According to Scott, this is where data needs to start playing a central role, “If you want to get bigger and bolder in your metrics and bigger and bolder in your analysis of how processes are behaving, you do need to use the data to see it.”

The ability to find the data sources for the metrics you wish to track is critical in creating the  information and insights to make informed decisions. That includes not only data about performance metrics, but also data about the individuals at the frontline.

About Scott Schwarz:

Scott has been in operations management, quality management, and Lean Six Sigma for 30 years with a focus on best practices to reduce waste and increase profits. 

Scott helps businesses improve their processes and increase efficiency. It sounds simple, but it often requires an outside person to see the blemishes in a business. He continually helps small and medium size businesses use state-of-the-art practical solutions to improve efficiency and increase effectiveness in their operational methods and practices.

Tune in to the Lean Frontline Podcast to hear more interviews in our special series: Conversations with Consultants

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