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Change requires a sustained process

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Creating a KAIZEN culture requires a sustained process and consistent message. Although change may begin from top or bottom but it requires commitment from the entire workforce, each and every individual should be engaged. The whole journey of Transformation should be well managed so that whatever improvements happen are managed & sustained in a proper way. The entire focus should be on process & results. Process change without discipline may lead to degraded performance and results may surprise you by not being in line with what was being planned.  

Inconsistent Processes yield Inconsistent Results and therefore ignoring the process reduces the chances for desired results.


While Quality processes yield Quality results. Ignoring results hides long-term strategy and areas for improvement.


The Old Paradigm says “I don’t care how you do it, just get it done!’ while the New Paradigm says Focus on Process & Results, Apply PDCA  (plan do check act)/SDCA (standardize do check act)approach, and make problems & processes visible.

People work on Processes, Processes create Results, Results cannot be changed


Engage people & Improve processes to get improved results and once the processes are improved efforts should be made to sustain it. SDCA focuses on all Maintenance/Sustenance activities. 

What is SDCA?

SDCA is a methodology to sustain improvements by:

  • Standardize: Establish standards to be achieved
  • Do: Implement standards
  • Check: Verify the actual work with standards
  • Act:  Review and assess any variation in standard


“Where there is no standard, there can be no kaizen.” – Taiichi Ohno

It is a refinement of the PDCA cycle aimed at stabilization of production processes prior to making attempts to improve.

Standardization process is a very important one that has few key features, presented below:

•    Represent the best, easiest, and safest way to do the job,

•    Offer the best way to preserve know-how and expertise,

•    Provide a way to measure performance,

•    Show the relationship between cause and effect,

•    Provide a basis for both maintenance and improvement,

•    Provide objectives and indicate training goals,

•    Provide a basis for training,

•    Create a basis for auditing or diagnosis, and

•    Provide a means for preventing recurrence of errors and minimizing variability.

Benefits of SDCA

  • Possibility of losses reduces.
  • Sustaining improvements becomes easier with SDCA.
  • Wastage of time reduced as standards are set for all activities, and there is a clear indication of what is to be done and how it is to be done.
  • Helps raise the bar for improvement standards.
  • Enable measurement of level of implementation of improvements and standards.
  • Helps to sustain lean gains and develop lean culture.

Clear objectives at all levels should be provided. Expectations should be made clear and people should be made accountable for results and this whole cycle should be supported by rewarding proper behaviour & results via public recognition, gits, etc.

“Change Thinking- Change Environment- Change Habits – Change Culture”

“We cannot hope to solve our most difficult problems with the same thinking that created them.” – Alber Einstein


Author: Kaizen Institute - India!

Kaizen Institute – India is part of the Global Kaizen Institute operations. Kaizen Institute was established by Sensei Masaaki Imai, the GURU of Kaizen. He wrote the 1st book 28 yrs ago and that is when it all started . We operate in 30+ countries today and have over 400+ coaches helping more then 600 organizations Learn, Apply, Sustain – Kaizen/ Operational Excellence. In India we have two physical offices – Pune & Ahmedabad and 27 coaches in all.

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