Few people enjoy the tumult, upheaval, disarray, conflict
You could call it the Kaizen Approach
Kaizen – continuous, incremental improvement – creates big changes but over time, with the participation of everyone on the team. Groups that embrace
Find your personal kaizen
At its core, kaizen is a philosophy where one dedicates oneself to becoming more effective, more satisfied, and more efficient – and to pursuing these objectives in everything around them. Luckily, kaizen is adaptable to different working styles and personalities. It’s also not intimidating to most people since the benefits of improvements are easy to see.
Take the Kaizen approach to your daily life by following these three steps:
Track your time and energy expenses
Kaizen should be easy and painless because at its heart it encourages you to do less by eliminating wasteful activities. You’ve probably heard the oft-repeated phrase, “work smarter, not harder.” That’s the kaizen philosophy in a nutshell
Take a close look at everyday activities and how long you spend on each. A notebook or ledger can be very helpful in this regard. Jot down the time invested in each task for at least a week. You’ll soon become aware that some of your time is being wasted, and it’s keeping you from focusing on what you really want to accomplish. Here are some areas you should take particular note of:
How many reports are you generating and who is actually using them?
How many meetings do you attend which, in retrospect, you don’t need to?
How many projects are you involved in that have never yielded actionable results?
What “must do” tasks can you simplify, streamline or automate?
Seize the day with small steps
List in hand, it’s time to determine which tasks you really must attend to, and which ones you’ve been completing out of habit or because no one ever told you to stop. Cut the tasks that are of questionable value, and for those you decide you must do, write down the ways each might be improved
Review what works, and what doesn’t
When these techniques fail, you won’t need a coach or supervisor to point it out. You’ll feel the frustration, anxiety or impatience failure causes at key points of the day. Note these times well: later, you can reflect on them to discover additional small changes you can make to smooth over such bumps
Ask yourself where the pitfalls and vistas of your day were, and why each came about. What was learned? What can be improved?
Next, of course, it’s time to repeat the process. That’s the “continuous” part of “continuous improvement.” By doing so, you’ll find you’re well on your way to replacing the frustration of unrealistic goals with the joy of watching great things arise from measured successes.
Keep the Change with Kaizen
was written by me, Greg Norton – also known as webzenkai. I’ve got more than two decades’ experience building effective websites and powerful email campaigns that yield results. Feel free to contact me regarding this article or anything else you find on this website.