ICIPS Institute for Continuous Improvement
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Is organisational design fundamental to achieving a culture of continuous improvement?

By Michael Shaw


What is it that drives a culture continuous improvement with an organisation? Is it sufficient to just develop the skills of the workforce in the basic science of improvement?

What is it that drives a culture continuous improvement with an organisation? Is it sufficient to just develop the skills of the workforce in the basic science of improvement? You can hear the sales patter of the management consultants, let us train your workforce in lean, etc. and they will go forth; day in day out motivated to improve what they do and how they do it for the benefit of the customer, patient and ultimately for the success of organisation! Or is the answer far more complex, multi-faceted and quite wicked? Is continuous improvement not the prize, but the outcome, the recognition that the organisation actually works! If that hypothesis is correct then what are the inputs, the processes which generate the outcome? Could it be anything to do with the design of the organisation, are there a set of fundamental building blocks (components) critical to all organisations; whatever their size which enable, encourage and drive continuous improvement? Is the design of the organisation fundamental to its success?

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