"Empowerment Works!" was the message from James Day and his team of six co-presenters from Delta Faucet’s factory floor. People linchpin their system and are the true experts in the workplace. What happens when you rely on the experts on the shopfloor:
- The mission is ultimately about uncovering the root causes of problems
- You get real "unbridled" feedback on the current status of things at the workstation
- You get commitment to reduce or remove those root causes when you work shoulder to shoulder with people rather than sequestering your work improvement team in a conference room
- Companies (and even individual departments) may have different methods to support improvements to varying degrees but people are the common bond in every corporate culture
A coach’s wheel (Teach, Coach, Support, Empower) was presented for faciltators that described the four stages of employee engagement and team development. The essence being that the coach starts out more involved and then retreats as the team gains confidence.
Finally, a lively discussion of Lean/Ergo DON’Ts capped the session. Don’t take sides during team development. Don’t be overly judgemental. Don’t dominat the group discussion and don’t forget to let the team figure out the answer. In other words, just like in Kindergarten, "Play Nice!"