Continuous improvements are often run by the PDCA method. PDCA stands for plan, do, check, act.
Plan – define your problem and identify the root cause.
Do – Develop a solution and implement.
Check – Measure the success of your solutions.
Act – Document results, set a new standard, share experiences and repeat.
A solid foundation may force you to think new, think alternatively. It may require changing the most difficult thing in the world, the company culture. Continuous improvement (Kaizen) is synonymous with constant change. So, the company culture must support constant changes. Normally organizations resist change. But if you can involve all your employees in the process, you can build a culture for change. The upside of Kaizen is that doing improvements continuously, every incremental improvement seems smaller than the typical revolutionary change that comes from years of procrastinating or postponing decisions.
Lastly, give your employees the tools to participate and act. Keep in mind that knowledge is a powerful tool. It doesn’t help giving someone a nice and shiny tool if they don’t know how and when to utilize it. However, once the knowledge and perspective are in place, the possibilities and potential are endless – if you allow it to be.