Feeling lost on your improvement journey: Relearn the Work of Management


23rd October 2019


Chester, UK



Workshop Introduction

The idea of improving the work, is fundamental to the success of every organisation and something that nearly every leader and senior manager advocates.

How this often materializes is with a focus on finding waste, certifying subject matter experts and deploying improvement techniques. The mistake runs so deep that even some of our smartest managers get in on the act, taking a similar approach of cherry-picking improvement activities.

But instead of selecting tools their focus is on selecting initiatives as solutions to larger business problems, then whilst joining others who are also lost on their improvement journey, they scratch around for ideas of what to do next by attending: assessment sessions, best practice visits, following improvement roadmaps and seeking to gain organization certification.

At first, this approach may seem rewarding, but apart from a short term high the improvement actions fail to have the desired impact, as changes are not sustained, and the same type of problems recur again and again.

The problem is that too many leaders and managers spend time on the wrong things and are not learning about fractures in the business system that allow problems to breed without addressing them.

In many instances our greatest problem lies hidden in plain sight, we just need to learn to see it.

‘The worker is not the problem. The system is the problem. If you want to improve performance, you must work on the system’ and ‘94% of the problems in business are system-driven and only 6% are people driven’.  

Deming, Shingo and many others have warned us numerous times that our focus should be to improve the system, but too often our default decision seems to be delegating action to the workers and deploying improvement initiatives, tools & assessments instead of firstly understanding and correcting fractures in the business system.

Through lecture, discussion and a mixture of classroom exercises this 1-day workshop will help leaders develop a greater understanding of the work of management and leadership to improve the effectiveness of their organisation’s improvement approach.


Attendees will learn:

–       The typical stages of an organisation’s improvement journey

–       Common pitfalls that too many organisation’s and leaders fall foul of

–       How different types of management philosophy can impact an organisation’s improvement journey

–       Discover an alternative route for leaders and senior management

–       Five essential leadership traits that are fundamental in helping to improve an organisation’s performance, capability and decision making

–       How to develop an organisation’s improvement system, defining who should be improving what

–       How management can make time for continuous improvement and Lean

–       Learn how leadership and management teams can help change the behaviour of an organisation

Topics that will be examined include:

–       Effective improvement approaches

–       Who should be working on what problem

–       Management routines to support lean

–       Lean leadership behaviour

–       Gemba walks

–       Lean transformation framework

–       Management standard work

–       Visual management

–       Creating time for improvement

–       The work of lean leadership & mgnt

–       Layered audits & leadership confirmation

Workshop Benefits

–       Learning how to improve the effectiveness of your organisation’s improvement journey

–       Developing a greater understanding of the work of management in an improvement environment

–       Learn how to accelerate the impact of employee activities on business performance

–       Learn how to improve the alignment of employees’ actions with the organisation’s objectives

–       Learn key tactics to develop the collective understanding of leaders at all levels of the organization

–       Learn key micro steps that can be adopted quickly to improve capacity, capability and performance

By attending this masterclass, leaders and senior management will learn how to improve the effectiveness of their improvement journey and the role that management plays in helping to improve performance, capacity and capability.

Who Should Attend? 

Leaders, management teams, lean practitioners and lean teams wanting to accelerate and improve the quality of their lean implementations.


  • Attendance – 1 Day Course
  • Class size – Maximum 20 people per day
  • Timings – Each day will run from 09:00 – 17:00
  • Cost:
    • Public Sector:   £400.00 – Government Funded
    • Private:            £425.00
    Note: Prices are exclusive of VAT
  • Materials – A PDF copy of the materials will be available via the Lean Enterprise Academy website
  • Facilities** – Refreshments and lunches will be provided by LEA

*Please note prices exclude VAT at the standard rate of 20%

We can also run these workshops in-house at your convenience, if you would like to explore this option please contact us at [email protected] or call +44 (0)1600 890590

Follow up (optional)

LEA provides an ongoing mentoring service for organisations involved in making Lean transformations. Lean Transformation Master Plans, supporting A3s & VSM’s developed by the organisation can be reviewed at 30/60/90 intervals. This provides the organisation with help and direction in sustaining the learning from the workshop process and helps highlight further learning opportunities that can be pulled, as and when required, by the organisation.

Other workshops available – please visit our events page for more details

The lessons learnt during this workshop give an overview of the entire Lean Transformation Framework