How I'm Spending My Quarantine
As I was typing to my friends yesterday, one of the only advantages to being 59 (ouch) is I am 100% sure that through challenges (personal or global) we (as humans) will emerge better, smarter, stronger and more appreciative!
Most of you know I LOVE my job!! My "real" job is part-time Lean Champion for several fun, energetic, growing businesses. I also teach one class (Lean Operations Management) at CCSU, teach lean at Gateway/Middlesex as part of the Skill Up program, officiate college football, and of course help my wife Gloria practice lean in her frozen yogurt shop I have relationships in my "work" life with humans I love (yup, used that 4 letter word), admire and respect.
Well, life has changed quickly. For example, take my current class at Central CT State University. We meet once per week for 3 hours on Friday mornings. As usual, I look forward to their energy and engagement as applied to TPS principles and of course legos. After Spring break, we can't meet until further notice. Virtual!!! Since then, 59 year old Billy-boy needed a crash course in Blackboard and Webex. I've spoken to a couple of my students by phone to ask their advice regarding a fun, engaging, value-added 3 hour Virtual class once per week until whenever. Working feverishly to that end, but I am pumped. LEARNING is INVIGORATING!!!
Now my clients (friends). The lean game plan is always the same.....wider and deeper. That is, how do we get more and more people involved in embracing A3 thinking and making improvements (wider), while also helping developing the roles of managers and owners (deeper). Try not to let this go on hold due to the current challenge we are all faced with. A3 is working at the very top of Maslow's pyramid (the hierarchy of human needs), which is self-actualization (creative needs, problem solving, spontaneity, acceptance of facts, etc.). Many people are anxious and nervous right now. Nothing like a trip to the top of the pyramid to take our minds off the onslaught of fear and uncertainty. The people who do the most A3s all give the same answer when asked why they lead dozens of A3s each year...."it's fun!!!!!!"
Stay tuned for an invite to a virtual meeting for all of the lean champions from all of the companies I've ever worked in to strategize ways to provide much-needed trips for more people up the pyramid ! Also, stay tuned for weekly "learning units" to work wider and deeper as well as some 101 on how to implement some lean tools (SMED, TPS, 5S, kanban) via A3.
Stay safe! Love you people.