Sunday, July 9, 2017

2017 Mid-Year Reflection

Ultimate purpose:
To love God with my heart, mind, and soul, and to share His love using the gifts and abilities He has given me.

3-5 Year Objectives:
1. Be healthy in mind, body, and soul
2. Share God's love with others
3. Contribute to the field of continuous improvement

Annual Goals and Activities:
1.1 Care for my mind:
      1.1.1 Attend >/= 12 counseling sessions. Status: △ - 5/12 sessions completed.
      1.1.2 Post weekly goals in A Running Tally. Status: X - 12/24 posts
      1.1.3 Post quarterly 2017 goal progress update in A Running Tally. Status: O - 2/4 posts.
      1.1.4 Keep a log of when I go outside my comfort zone and the results UPDATE 1/22: This has                    been going well, so adding a metric for Q1 of a total of 107 entries, then re-evaluate at Q1                    reflection. Status: X - 47 out of 107 entries. Action plan: Post a reminder with quotes

1.2 Care for my body:
      1.2.1 Personal goal #1. Result: X - 18 times. Yikes. Action plan:
               a. Increased counseling sessions in February to 2x month. Result: ~20% decline in incidents.
               b. Incorporate weekly detox days. Result: O - 50% decline in incidents!
               c. When traveling, plan a treat meal at the end. Result: Doing b. has enabled this.
               e. Listen to 2 podcasts per month related to topic. Result: Removing goal, not important.
      1.2.2 Personal goal #2. Result: X - Gave up this goal.
      1.2.3 Strength training and/or yoga 2x per week. Result: X - Removing this goal.
      1.2.4 Track my daily nutritional intake. Result: X - about 50%. Gave up this goal, but found a new one.
      1.2.5 Detox 1-2 days per week. Result: O.  Average 1 day per week, occasionally 2. This has been a huge benefit.

1.3 Care for my soul.
      1.3.1 Write verse and thoughts in journal each day. Result: X - about 50%.
      1.3.2 Attend church >/= 40 times. Result: △ - 7 times.
      1.3.3 Read the following 3 books:
               a. The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Result: X - 1 chapter. Removing goal in lieu of weekly Bible study.
               b. Confessions by St. Augustine
               c. The Everlasting Man by G.K. Chesterton Removed 1/22
      1.3.4 Attend 2 semesters of small group study - Result: △ have attended about 5 sessions. Enjoying getting to know folks.

2.1 Complete and publish book
      2.1.1 Publish book 100% on Leanhub.com by June. Result: X - still only 10/30 chapters done.
      2.1.2 Improve book with feedback. Result: X - only 10 chapters done.
      2.1.3 Publish book on Amazon via CreateSpace by October. Result: TBD.

2.2 Become foster parents.  Sadly, for reasons we disagree with, we were not approved.
      2.2.1 Obtain foster parent certification. Remaining items:
               a. Fire inspection. Result: O - Done.
               b. Cats rabies shots. Result: O - Done.
               c. Physicals. Result: O - Done
               d. CPR / bloodborne pathogens training. Status: O - Done
      2.2.2 Provide respite care for children. Status: Did not work out. I'm at peace with this, though.

2.3 Love my family and friends
      2.3.1 Give a card and/or gift for the birthdays of 36 people. Status: O - 10/35 cards done and sent.
      2.3.2 Spend time with family >/= 25 times, possibly including: Status: △ - 4/25 visits. Action Plan: Initiate more visits instead of letting others do that.
               a. Trip to see my college with my sister. Status: O - Done - great time!
               b. Play in Feb with my dad and nephew. Status: O - done.
               c. CO vacation with Shane's family - Planned.
               d. CO vacation with my family - Planned.
               e. Oct wedding in Maine. - Planned
               f. Thanksgiving with my family
               g. Christmas with Shane's family
               h. 4th of July at my house - Status - planned.
               i. (new) 3 day vacation with Shane at the beach - planned.
      2.3.3 Continue to provide love and support to my younger sister
               a. College trip. Status: O - Done! Had a great time.
               b. Summer visit. Status: TBD
               c. Answer her calls whenever I can. Status: O - All calls (about 4-5) immediately answered or returned ASAP.
               d. Reach out to her daily. Status: X - About 50-60%. Action plan - post reminder in journal.
               e. Care packages / letters. Status: O - two letters and 2 care packages.

3.1 Develop knowledge of continuous improvement (CI)
      3.1.1 Listen to >/= 100 podcasts (i.e. Kainexus and Gemba Academy). Status: O - 29/100.
      3.1.2 Read >/= 7 books, including:
               a. Toyota Kata. Status -  Status: 30% done.
               b. Beyond Strategic Vision. Status: 50% done.
               c. Creating a Kaizen Culture. Status: Not ordered.
               d. Creating a Lean Culture. Status: 75% done.
               e. The Power of Habit. Status: Not ordered.
               f. Lean Six Sigma for Service. Status: Not ordered.
               g. The Four Hour Work Week. Status: Remove
               h.  (New) The Lean Guide to Leadership
               i.   (New) Gemba Walks
      3.1.3 Write 5 blog posts about CI (inc. reviews of the above books). Result:  △ - 2/5 done.
      3.1.5 Attend a lean/CI conference if I have the opportunity. Status: O - still on track to attend AME - Boston, October 2017.

3.2 Practice continuous improvement skills
      3.2.1 Execute >/= 4 DMAIC projects. Result: △ - 1 project done, next will be done by end of July
      3.2.2 Execute >/= 3 Kaizen events - Status: O - 2 events done (both 5S Kaizens)
      3.2.3 Have >/= 2 coaching sessions with each of my Green Belts. Status: O - 20/24 sessions done.

4.1 Other (nice to have, but not necessary)
     4.1.1 Paint my kitchen. Status: O - Done!
     4.1.2 Paint my dining room with my mom. Status: O - Done!
     4.1.3 Paint my front door. Status: O - Done!
     4.1.4 Develop my personal style Status: not important, removing goal.
     4.1.5 Paint office with my mom. Status: O - Done!

5.1 Look for additional opportunities for growth and service

Other reflections:
1. Got promotion at work
2. Working toward Master Black Belt role at work
3. Selected to work on executive-sponsored project at work
4. Mentored new black belts and created onboarding program for them
5. Less anxiety overall
6. Personal style has improved - feel more comfortable in more feminine clothes

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Weekly Goals #37: Reset

Last week I was facilitating a week-long event at one of my plants in Philadelphia. It was an intense but good experience, but now I am ready for a week of recovery before traveling again the following week. I do not have many obligations at work, either, and the weather will be beautiful.

Goals:
Personal:
1. Make appointment for eye exam. I'm almost out of contacts.
2. Finish painting front door.
3. F 2-3 days
4. Go for hikes/walks most days of the week
5. Bible study on Thursday
6. Easter lunch with family
7. Personal goal (no A or P)
8. Look into yoga class

Work:
1. Track savings for project
2. Help with onboarding of new co-worker
3. Mid-year performance review
4. Expense report
5. Summarize expedite data
6. Prep for 5S kaizen pre-event next week:
    a. Inventory list
    b. general prep list
    c. 5S flyer
7. Random email catching-up

Sunday, March 26, 2017

2017 First Quarter Reflection

Ultimate purpose:
To love God with my heart, mind, and soul, and to share His love using the gifts and abilities He has given me.

3-5 Year Objectives:
1. Be healthy in mind, body, and soul
2. Share God's love with others
3. Contribute to the field of continuous improvement

Annual Goals and Activities:
1.1 Care for my mind:
      1.1.1 Attend >/= 12 counseling sessions. Status: O - 4/12 sessions completed.
      1.1.2 Post weekly goals in A Running Tally. Status: △ - 11/12 posts
      1.1.3 Post quarterly 2017 goal progress update in A Running Tally. Status: O - 1/4 posts.
      1.1.4 Keep a log of when I go outside my comfort zone and the results UPDATE 1/22: This has                    been going well, so adding a metric for Q1 of a total of 107 entries, then re-evaluate at Q1                    reflection. Status: X - 47 out of 107 entries. Action plan: Post a reminder with quotes

1.2 Care for my body:
      1.2.1 Personal goal #1. Result: X - 18 times. Yikes. Action plan:
               a. Increased counseling sessions in February to 2x month. Result: ~20% decline in incidents.
               b. Incorporate weekly detox days. Result: 33% decline in incidents.
               c. Limit F when having A. Result: Not started.
               d. When traveling, plan a treat meal at the end.
               e. Listen to 2 podcasts per month related to topic.
      1.2.2 Personal goal #2. Result: X - Gave up this goal.
      1.2.3 Strength training and/or yoga 2x per week. Result: X - 11/24 times. Action plan: Find and sign-up for yoga classes.
      1.2.4 Track my daily nutritional intake. Result: X - about 50%. Gave up this goal, but found a new one.
      1.2.5 Detox 1-2 days per week. So far, have done 7 days in one month with good results. It's hard, but it's worth it.
 
1.3 Care for my soul.
      1.3.1 Write verse and thoughts in journal each day. Result: X - about 50%. Action plan: Do first thing when I get to work. Try writing on a note card and posting instead of in journal.
      1.3.2 Attend church >/= 40 times. Result: △ - 7 times.
      1.3.3 Read the following 3 books:
               a. The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Result: X - 1 chapter. Removing goal in lieu of weekly Bible study.
               b. Confessions by St. Augustine
               c. The Everlasting Man by G.K. Chesterton Removed 1/22
      1.3.4 Attend 2 semesters of small group study

2.1 Complete and publish book
      2.1.1 Publish book 100% on Leanhub.com by June. Result: △ - 10/30 chapters done.
      2.1.2 Improve book with feedback. Result: △ - done for the 10 chapters published so far.
      2.1.3 Publish book on Amazon via CreateSpace by October. Result: TBD.

2.2 Become foster parents
      2.2.1 Obtain foster parent certification. Remaining items:
               a. Fire inspection. Result: O - Done.
               b. Cats rabies shots. Result: O - Done.
               c. Physicals. Result: O - Done
               d. CPR / bloodborne pathogens training. Status: O - Done
      2.2.2 Provide respite care for children. Status: TBD.

2.3 Love my family and friends
      2.3.1 Give a card and/or gift for the birthdays of 36 people. Status: O - 10/35 cards done and sent.
      2.3.2 Spend time with family >/= 25 times, possibly including: Status: △ - 4/25 visits. Action Plan: Initiate more visits instead of letting others do that.
               a. Trip to see my college with my sister. Status: O - Planned, plane tix purchased, college visit arranged, and rough agenda completed.
               b. Play in Feb with my dad and nephew. Status: O - done.
               c. CO vacation with Shane's family
               d. CO vacation with my family
               e. Oct wedding in Maine.
               f. Thanksgiving with my family
               g. Christmas with Shane's family
               h. 4th of July at my house?
      2.3.3 Continue to provide love and support to my younger sister
               a. College trip. Status: O - planning almost done.
               b. Summer visit. Status: TBD
               c. Answer her calls whenever I can. Status: O - All calls (about 4-5) immediately answered or returned ASAP.
               d. Reach out to her daily. Status: X - About 50-60%. Action plan - post reminder in journal.
               e. Care packages / letters. Status: O - two letters and one care package.

3.1 Develop knowledge of continuous improvement (CI)
      3.1.1 Listen to >/= 100 podcasts (i.e. Kainexus and Gemba Academy). Status: O - 29/100.
      3.1.2 Read >/= 10 7 books, including:
               a. Toyota Kata. Status - ordered.
               b. Beyond Strategic Vision. Status: 30% done.
               c. Creating a Kaizen Culture. Status: Not ordered.
               d. Creating a Lean Culture. Status: 50% done.
               e. The Power of Habit. Status: Not ordered.
               f.  Drive
               g. Consulting for Dummies
               h. Lean Six Sigma for Service. Status: Not ordered.
               i. One Small Step Can Change Your Life
               j. The Four Hour Work Week. Status: Not ordered.
      3.1.3 Write 20 5 blog posts about CI (inc. reviews of the above books). Result: X - 1/20 done. Need to give my book priority, so reducing to 5 posts.
      3.1.4 If #2.1 is done, pursue master's certificate in Lean Six Sigma (Villanova?). Status: X - due to budget constraints this year (outside of my control). Will try again next year.
      3.1.5 Attend a lean/CI conference if I have the opportunity. Status: O - amazingly, despite the budget constraints, I got permission to go to AME in October. I'm extremely excited.
 
3.2 Practice continuous improvement skills
      3.2.1 Execute >/= 4 DMAIC projects. Result: △ - first project delayed 1 month, but on-track to finish by end of April.
      3.2.2 Execute >/= 3 Kaizen events - Status: O - first event will be completed by the end of April.
      3.2.3 Have >/= 2 coaching sessions with each of my Green Belts. Status: O - 22/24 sessions done. This has turned out to be a very enjoyable part of my work.

4.1 Other (nice to have, but not necessary)
     4.1.1 Paint my kitchen. Status: O - Done!
     4.1.2 Paint my dining room with my mom. Status: O - Done!
     4.1.3 Paint my front door.
     4.1.4 Develop my personal style Status: not important, removing goal.
     4.1.5 NEW GOAL - Paint office with my mom.
 
5.1 Look for additional opportunities for growth and service

Weekly Goals #36: The End of Quarter 1

Wow - the first quarter of 2017 is drawing to a close. To be honest, it has not been as good as I had wanted, but I'll save the details for my quarterly reflection post next week.

Lately I have noticed my goals posts becoming more of to-do lists, which is really just duplicating the ones I have already. I'm going to attempt more broader goals this week and see how that goes.

1. Take care of my body.
2. Network with at least two members of upper management.
3. Wednesday - F (work from home)
3. Gain consensus with key stakeholders prior to Thursday's Gate Review.
4. Gain consensus with all stakeholders on Project RH next steps via the Gate Review.
5. Gain consensus on sub-project next steps at stakeholder meeting on Friday.
6. Two cadence calls.
7. Counseling appointment.
8. Finish editing then publish chapter 11 of book.
9. Prepare for next week's 5S Kaizen Event (including setting up two Green Belt coaching sessions)
10. Write down daily verse each day on a note card and put it on my desk to look at throughout the day (trying something a little different).

Monday, March 20, 2017

Weekly Goals #35: A Calmer Week.

I've been traveling the past two weeks, so I'm looking forward to staying put this week, especially since I have a lot of computer work to do.

Tuesday-Wednesday:

  • Set agenda for Friday's team meeting.  Done.
  • Expense report (training coworker while doing it). Done.
  • Enter 4-5 projects into pipeline (training coworker while doing it). Done.
  • Discuss 5S Kaizen event roles with coworker. Done
  • Medication follow-up appointment - remember to get insurance thing straightened out. Done.
  • Go for a trail run at the local college after the appointment. Done (at local park instead of college).
  • Transcribe notes from last week. Done.
  • Establish and start follow-up items from last week. Done,
  • 2 coaching opportunities for belts (JF and RE). Done 1/2, the other didn't call me back.
  • Respond to email with ideas on how to resolve safety concerns, also let department manager know. Done.
  • Prep Analyze results for team meeting. Done.


Thursday

  • Trial on manufacturing method all morning - very important for project. Done - good initial results. 
  • Summarize initial results of trial. Done & reviewed with team. 
  • Summarize metrics for tomorrow's meeting. Not done - still waiting on the data I need.


Friday

  • Team meeting all morning. Done - GREAT meeting.
  • Coaching session with Green Belt in afternoon. Not done with the belt I intended, but had a good last-minute session with a different belt. 


Saturday

  • 5S in the morning. Done - actually Friday night, so I'd have time for errands Saturday morning.
  • Visit with my mom and niece who are coming to help paint the dining room. Done - had a really nice time. I enjoy shared activities like this. 


Sunday

  • Church. Not done - husband had children's church, and didn't feel like going alone / too lazy.
  • F (24 hour). In progress. Kinda rough. 
  • Past week recap. In progress.
  • Next week's goals. Up next. 

General:

  • Go for a walk or run most days. Probably 4-5/7 days.
  • Treat myself to one special meal. Done - had grilled salmon, potatoes, and green beans last night. 
  • Write down verse of the day each day. Partially done - maybe 2-3/7 days :-(

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Weekly Goals #34: Heading West

The main event of this week is a trip to the San Diego area from Wednesday to Saturday. I'm looking forward to it - I haven't been to the West Coast since I was very young. I'm actually going to the same county (Orange County) that I was born in.

Since I return Saturday, I'm taking off the following Monday from work, so I'm going to include it in this week's goals since it is part of the "weekend".

Goals for this week:

Monday
1. Complete team survey for team meeting last week (1 hr) - Result: I have no idea what I meant by this!
2. Complete notes from my RH team meeting and send to team (1 hr) - Result: done.
3. Discuss transition strategy with my manager (1 hr) - Result: Done. We decided to try to push for a year before possibly having me move into her position.
4. Call with one of my plants to prepare for a 5S Kaizen event (1.5 hr). Result: Done, and they were well-prepared!
5. Give my new coworker a plant tour (2 hr). Result: Done, managed to batch it with a meeting out in manufacturing to save time.
6. Set up kick-off meeting for PA (0.5 hr). Result: Done (on Sunday)
7. Set agenda and send out for Friday's meeting (1 hr). Result: Done.


Tuesday
1. Book flight to PA (1 hr). Result: Done (on Sunday)
2. Meet with key stakeholder regarding project update. Result: Done, and it went well, despite having to also discuss a safety concern.
3. Identify and schedule new tasks based on #2. Result: Done.
4. Prep for Wednesday's CRN meeting. Result: Done, but see below.


Wednesday
1. CRN off-site meeting - give update and gain consensus. Network. Result: Done, but with mixed results. My presentation was almost too well-prepared - they assumed were were farther along than the brainstorming/collaboration stage and reacted as if we were getting ready to implement the ideas, instead of just vetting them. I asked for feedback from two of the people present and learned a lot about how to modify my approach for next time.
2. Travel to San Diego (will take about 10 hours total) - F if possible (16 hour). Result, no F, but <300. I spent the first flight journaling and the second flight writing an email. Despite the length, it wasn't too bad.

Thursday
1. Work during morning from coffee shop. Result: Done, although I woke up at 4:30 California time and had to wait until 6 am for Panera to open. I got a lot done there.
2. Check out Sprouts store. Result: This was fun - a big natural foods store that I spent over an hour wandering around.
3. Get Japanese ramen for lunch (lots of Japanese places in the area). Result: I got some food at Sprouts so I wasn't hungry for ramen, but I did manage to go to a Japanese restaurant on Friday evening (by myself!) and enjoyed miso soup and sashimi.
4. 2-3 hour hike at mountain park. Result: This was by far the best part of the trip. I went for a glorious, 6-7 mile hike with absolutely stunning views. I spent almost an hour at the top just relaxing and enjoying the views.

Friday:
1. Morning visit to plant - go-and-see, talk with plant manager about next steps, meet with GB candidate and understand project. Result: This went very well. Three people gave me a tour and answered questions, and I really got a better understanding of their needs and how my project can impact/help them. I also enjoyed working with the new green belt to get ready for his class.
2. Travel back to Santa Ana. Result: Done. I stopped at a used bookstore that was supposed to be really good, but it was rather crappy. I wish I had not wasted time there, because by the time I got to Newport Beach, it was dark. Nevertheless, I walked along the beach and stopped at a hole-in-the wall restaurant for some delicious Japanese food.

Saturday
1. Return home. Result: Done. Long flight from Santa Ana to Atlanta, but a movie (Dr. Strange) helped to pass the time. F all day.
2. Maybe a quick stop at IKEA to look at rugs. Result: Not done - I really just wanted to get home and see my little family, and I'm glad I did.

Sunday
1. Church. Result: Done, and I left feeling encouraged.
2. Possibly start 48 hour through Monday. Result: Decided to start Saturday instead, and I'm glad I did as I needed Monday (today) to recover.
3. Edit one chapter of book!!!!!!!  Result: Not done (yet-still have half the day left).

Monday
1. Goals recap. Result: Almost done.
2. Goals blog post. Result: Will do next.
3. Prep for upcoming work week: Result: I will do some of this today, the remainder tomorrow. I have a quieter week at work.

Overall, a good week, and I especially enjoyed the amazing trip to California.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Weekly Goals #33: Back at It

I did not post weekly goals for last week, but I'm moving forward with the upcoming. It's going to be a busy week with responsibilities and travel, but the weekend ahead is clear, so I'll have a chance for some rest and recovery then.

Monday:
1. Welcome and complete the day's scheduled onboarding tasks for my new coworker
Result: Done, and found that we get along extraordinarily well. I also brought her along on a time study for my project, and got good feedback from those who interacted with her. We were a good team - she mingled and talked with everyone while I gathered the data. I'm really looking forward to continuing to work with her.
2. Gate review for one of my belts. 
Result: Done, and my boss let me take the lead on it. I was able to reassure him on some points and provide feedback on others - ultimately we were able to close the project which had been lingering open for > 1 year.
3. Complete financials tracking for one of my projects. 
Result: Done, although I had to spend some extra time asking for confirmation of some data. Also included in this was reporting the results to the key stakeholders.

Tuesday:
1. Go-and-see time study activity for one of my projects. Also will bring along the new coworker for the experience.
Result - see Monday #1. I was very please to see the team had prepared very well for the trial.
2. Travel to team meeting with my husband. 
Result: Done, and he thankfully drove there for me.
3. Dinner with my husband.
Result: Neither of us felt like going out for dinner, so we got takeout from Hibachi Express, which was decent.

Wednesday
1. All-day team meeting. 
Result: Done, despite getting only 1 hour of sleep the night before. The temperature in the hotel room was hot, and I was dreading the upcoming meeting. But the meeting actually went very well, although I struggled a little to stay awake! I even volunteered to do a report-out on a workshop, which went well.
2. Team dinner.
Result: Done, although I was so incredibly tired. I still enjoyed conversation with my coworkers and the hibachi experience.
3. Weights at gym (if time).
Result: Decided it was more important to spend the couple of hours between the meeting and dinner with my husband, and I'm glad I did.

Thursday
1. Meet with my boss' boss to go over a site.
Result: Done, although there was more going on that just showing him the site. The department head had found out about it and had the perception we were going 'rogue'. I think I was able to mitigate this a little by showing how I went through the proper channels to create the site, and that it was only adding to what had already been done, not replacing it. I'm frustrated that he would be upset that I would take the initiative to solve some problems, but I'm not too concerned about it.
2. Half-day team meeting.
Result: Done, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. We went through our DiSC personality profiles and how that relates to teams in the workplace. I was somewhat surprised to find that I was a very strong C, as I thought I'd be a CD as I have been working on my assertiveness. But I accept it, along with its strengths and weaknesses.
3. Half-day team building activity. Result: Done, and I enjoyed taking a hike with some of my coworkers. Conversation flows much easier when I'm doing something like that, and I enjoyed getting to know some people better.
4. Travel back home.
Result: Done, and despite being tired, I drove home as I knew my husband was even more tired.
5. Possible Bible Study if we get back in time. 
Result: Not done - we were too exhausted.

Friday
1. 5S Kaizen Pre-event with my project team and team meeting.
Result: Done, and with good results despite not feeling as prepared as I would like. What worked particularly well was having another practitioner do a show-and-tell of a previous 5S event and the current results. The team ultimately decided to move forward with the event.
2. Coaching session with one of my belts.
Result: Done, and by the end of the hour the belt candidate said he felt much less apprehensive about the pre-work and the upcoming green belt class.

Saturday:
1. Rest and recovery. 
Result: Done. A very low-key but nice day that included a long hike/walk through the neighborhood.
2. House 5S.
Result: Partially done on Saturday, and the remainder on Sunday, which was fine.
3. Finish editing book chapter.
Result: Not done, maybe today (Sunday). I am really struggling with procrastination on this one.

Sunday:
1. Church.
Result: Not done :-( My husband was doing children's service and I didn't really feel like going to the regular service by myself.
2. Reading.
Result: I've done a little, and planning on doing more this evening.
3. Run.
Result: Not done, but by choice. I had a long walk/hike yesterday, and I want to lay low today.

Addendum: Challenge log accomplishments:
1. Said "Good morning" over the cubicle wall to my new coworkers. We then had a long, good conversation - although I had some things I needed to get done, it worked out.
2. I approached one of the floor clerks and asked if he got one of the bagels I had brought in for the team. He said he had, and thanked me.
3. I sat next to a master black belt I didn't know very well but had chatted with before instead of sitting by my boss which would have been more comfortable. This resulted not only with connecting with her, but also the 4 other people at my table. Great choice.
4. I engaged another master black belt that I did not know well in conversation in the bathroom.
5. I asked a question about the DiSC profile in front of a group of 50 people.
6. I volunteered and did a report-out after a workshop at a team meeting in front of my department's upper management and my fellow belts.
7. I engaged a new acquaintance in a conversation about his DiSC profile type.


Saturday, February 18, 2017

Weekly Goals #32: A Fresh Start.

Goal #1: Gain consensus with all stakeholders on the Define/Measure phase of Project R.
Activities:

  • Meet with area manager and analyst on Monday for final discussion of ideas and her analysis so far. Result: This went well, although it was partly to ask if I really needed all the data that I had asked for, as it was more difficult to obtain than originally thought. We came to good consensus on what was needed and steps moving forward. 
  • Meet with the department manager to gain consensus on the proposed improvement ideas prior to the Define/Measure gate review. Result: Done, and he was very positive about what the team had done so far. 
  • Meet with one of the vice presidents and a couple of folks involved in the receiving sites to also get their buy-in/feedback on the ideas, as some will affect them. Result: This went particularly well - very helpful information and support. I was particularly surprised when one idea, which would require some effort from the sites, was welcomed.
  • Prep for and deliver gate review on Thursday. Remember to give credit to the team. Result: This had to be cancelled since the project sponsor could not attend. Rescheduled for next week. 


Goal #2: Develop action plans with team on how to begin the Analyze phase for the ideas we will pursue.

  • Prep for meeting. Result: Chose to postpone this meeting since I would not have the results from the Gate Review above. 
  • Work hard to solicit thoughts and feedback. Don't be a "lean zealot" - it's OK to compromise on some things. Progress over perfection. Result: See above. 


Goal #3: Miscellaneous work items
  • Follow up with three of my belts on scheduling their gate reviews. Result: Actually did one of the calls, but neglected to follow up with the other two. 
  • Touch base with the design director on one of the projects. Result: Done, although the person who told him to get in touch with me was mistaken about what my project was about. We were able to clear it up though, and it was good to talk. 
  • Respond to one of my belt's questions about a project, remembering to help him think for himself. Result: Done, although he's still struggling a little. We had a follow-up meeting with him and the project sponsor to be sure we were clear on what problem we were trying to solve. 
  • Work with the other black belt to come up with a regional alignment proposal. Result: Done, and it was accepted with a few tweaks by our manager on Friday. I'm pleased - my workload was the highest of the four belts, and now it is more even. 
  • Team meeting on Friday. Result: Done, and really had a good meeting. 
  • Interview on Monday. Result: Done, with very favorable impression of the candidate. 

Goal #4: Other
  • 2 Weight lifting sessions. Result: 0 done, and I'm wondering if I should cancel my gym membership. Now that the weather is getting nicer, I'd rather work out outside, but I need to strength train as well. I do have a dumbell and a lot of isotonic exercises I can do, but I'd like to use next week as a test to see if I actually do them. 
  • Read for at least 15 minutes each night. Result: Done, although sometimes it was trash magazines :-)
  • Challenge log item each day. Result: 5 done this week, but I know I did a couple more that I negelected to write down. I definitely pushed myself outside of my comfort zone a couple of times for. the sole purpose of this challenge log, so I would say it is working. 
  • Dailies. Result: Done, exept for Wednesday. I'm pleased that weekends are getting more consistent.
  • 2-3 Runs/walks. Result: Done, 4-5 total. 
  • Bible Study on Thursday night. Result: Done, and I am really enjoying this. We have only gone for two sessions, yet I can feel the love and the care of the group and the trust starting to build. 
  • Dentist appointment :-(.  Result: Cancelled on Wednesday, I need to reschedule. 

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Weekly Goals #31: First Week of Year 31



Overall Goals:
  1. Work on health (body & mind)
  2. Final filtering of Project R ideas (5-10?) in preparation for end of Define/Measure phase
  3. Successful 5S Kaizen pre-event
  4. Invest in relationships with others

Goal #1 Activities:
  • Counseling appointment (M)  Result: Done. Good timing - it was a rough day and I needed it.
  • 2-3 runs Result: Only 2 runs, in part due to travel this week. But I had an elliptical session at the hotel.
  • 1-2 weight training sessions: Result: Done - took advantage of the weights at the hotel. 
  • Daily verse and reflection: Result - Done 6 days out of 7
  • Try to eat healthier (more protein, more water, less sugar): Result - I definitely ate more this week, in part due to travel. Some of it was healthy, some not. 
  • Listen to podcasts to-and-from the airport so I can spend that time learning. Result - done. In total I listened to about 5 podcasts this week. 
  • Finish edit and publish next chapter of book. Result - not done. I'm really dragging my heels on this one. 

Goal #2 Activities:
  • Miscellaneous research and data compiling activities to give further details to ideas. Result: Done, although I wish I had time to do more in-depth research. But that will come as we move into the Analyze phase of the project. 
  • All ideas updated in idea box from last week's workshop, method developed for voting. Result: Done, with a simple but effective method for voting. 
  • Meet with key stakeholder to communicate status of project and gain consensus on direction and ideas. See if we need to remove any due to feasibility before the team votes on them. Result - Done, removed one idea and resurrected another. It was a good session, although I was a little discouraged to hear that I had not 'won over' a key player in the project yet. 
  • Send out team voting method after adjusting due to the stakeholder meeting. Tabulate results. Result: Done, and I tabulated the results one morning before my flight left. 
  • Additional: Had a good 1.5 hour conference call with the team where we narrowed down the ideas to the final 12. 
Goal #3 Activities
  • Update training material for PA 5S kaizen pre-event (remember to focus on Why). Result: Done, although I should have added the company logo. I ran out of time at the office to do this, and so had to do it the afternoon before the event. 
  • Get a good night's sleep the night before. Result: Not done - I was so hot and restless. Not my fault, though. It was hard to get through the training but I did it. 
  • Deliver training, being careful to adjust as needed based on feedback. Give a realistic picture of what 5S can do and what it will require. Result: Very successful I think - feedback was that it was a "great meeting" and I was pleasantly surprised about how enthusiastic the team was about having an event. By the time I left, they had committed to an area and a week, which I wasn't expected. 
Goal #4 Activities
  • Attend play and spend time with my dad, mom, sister, and nephew (Su). Result: Not done yet, but it will be tomorrow. 
  • Respond to questions from one of my belts first thing Monday morning.  Result: Done, and I also stopped by to see her to catch up, which went well. 
  • Coaching session with another belt - remember not to give answers but help people find them themselves. Result: done, and I did try to ask more questions instead of just providing answers. I think people prefer just answers because then they don't have to think, but the thinking is where the real learning takes place. 
  • Reach out to another one of my belts who I sense may be struggling. Result: Done, and despite some schedule conflicts, we worked out a time to talk on the phone. I think I was able to encourage him. 
  • One of three monthly cadence calls. Result: Done - went well. 
  • Valentine's day card and gift for my husband. Result - Done, and I think he liked it. I gave him chocolate (which was gone by the end of the day) and an oversized mug, which he has used every day since. He got me a dozen roses and a bottle of wine - so sweet!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Weekly Goals #30: Last Week of Being 30 (coincidentally)!

Next Saturday, I turn 31. I'm much less apprehensive about this birthday than I was last year - the jump from out of the decade of my 20's seemed overwhelming. In addition, I was looking for my next job and struggling with that. This year, despite some challenges, I'm overall in a much better place, thanks to God. I am convinced that I am deliberately kept in His grip of grace.

That's one thing I want to hold on to this week. God's goodness and love.

Goals/schedule for this week:

Every day:
  • Dailies Result: Surprisingly, Friday and Saturday were not the difficult days - it was the middle of the week. Some of it was due to being out of my routine with travel on Monday and Tuesday. 
  • Go for 3 runs. Result: Done - one trail run at a park while on a business trip to Knoxville, a run around the neighborhood on Friday, and a run Sunday morning. I'm going to start tracking my mileage on a chart on my office - I think that would also be a good motivator. 
  • Try to get ~10K steps per day if reasonably possible. Result: While traveling, I actually managed to do this or very close to it. Other days were more difficult. I only walk about 0.5 miles at work, so I'd have to make up the balance after work. On some days, like Thursday, it was more important to go to a small group study than get my steps in. I did stop wearing my Fitbit around Wednesday when the battery died, and I found that wearing it really does encourage me to get more steps in. 
  • Challenge log - at least one item per day Result: Only logged 4 items. I can say though that it has made me more mindful of going outside of my comfort zone. 
  • Finish reading Voluntary Madness. Result: Done last night. I really enjoyed the book, partly due to the author's penchant for self-reflection. Two things that resonated with me: The idea of "staying" with one's fear/anxiety, etc. instead of trying to escape it. By doing so, you become familiar with it, which helps eliminate the fear of the unknown that may be driving some of it. The other idea was that activities like crafting, art, etc. are therapeutic because they provide a sort of healthy escape from the constant negative chatter and thoughts in one's head. Finally, the author ended with her key piece of advice in facing issues: Get your boots on.
  • Read one more chapter in Beyond Strategic Vision. Result: Not done, in part because too tired to focus on heavier reading in the evenings. 

Monday
  • Enter all 37 improvement ideas from Friday's workshop into the shared site database while traveling in the a.m. Result: Done - transcribed them onto paper first from the pictures on my phone then logged them in the half an hour between flights. Setting this goal of getting it done before I finished traveling was effective. 
  • Add material breakdown document to team site. Result: Done, although I found out later after feedback from one of the team members that it did not take an important parameter into consideration, so it needed to be adjusted. 
  • Send out notice of new site to team. Result: Done. Mixed feedback on the site - they were somewhat ambivalent about that. That's okay though, the benefit is primarily for me for organizing the info, and the team may see benefit as time goes on. 
  • Enjoy a healthy lunch at Jason's Deli (my favorite). Result: Done, although I couldn't finish the whole salad I got. I'm starting to get over my obsession with Jason's Deli - it's just too much food. 
  • Log 10,000 steps in the p.m. (& maybe Whole Foods for dinner?) Result: Done, although it wasn't as fun as I had hoped, partly to feeling down. The weather and location did not help. I would have been better off spending this time holed up in a coffee shop getting some things done, I think. 

Tuesday
  • Go-and-see tour of one of our facilities. Result: Done. 
  • Meet & greet and coaching sessions with two of my green belts. Result: Done, and it went very well. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting them in person and talking and seeing some of their projects. I was very impressed with their work, and I think it meant a lot to them that I came to come see it. 
  • Head back to the airport for lunch & some work before flying home. Done, and I was able to get some work done while having a (good) Quiznos salad at the airport. 
  • Start investigation on inventory costs. Result - sent email and someone is working on getting this info for me. 
  • (Added later) - I had an hour before I had to be at the airport, so I went for a trail run at a local park, and I'm so glad I did. I felt good when finished. 

Wednesday
  • Catch up with manager. Result: Since I got in late the previous night, I worked from home this day and did not see her. However, we got caught up the next day. 
  • Consumer Packaging presentation (1 hr). Result: Done, although I did not get a lot out of it. Probably because I was working on other stuff while listening. 
  • Book travel to MV & send out agenda/notice (1 hr). Result: Not done - I wanted to wait and talk to the team on Friday to get their take on which site I should go to. 
  • Meet with finance to discuss rates for upcoming projects (1.5 hr). Result: Not done since I stayed home, but my manager was going anyway so I did not really need to be there. 
  • Discuss Project R with key stakeholder & understand customer pricing limitations (real and perceived) (1.5 hour). Result: Done, and it was very helpful. She was knowledgeable about the process, history, and limitations, and helped my understanding. She said she was very impressed with my grasp of the situation so far, which was good feedback to hear. 
  • Finish Project P completion summary, send out control plan, close project. (2 hours). Result: Done on Thursday - had a last-minute request to explain the tracking method, so I set up a call on Thursday to take care of that. Everyone seemed satisfied with the method, and I closed out the project. 
Thursday (so far no meetings - catch up day)
  • Prep for Friday's workshop (4 hours) inc. handout on TIM WOODS, printing agendas, lay out headers for kanban board for improvement ideas (on site as well). Result: Done, although I forgot to distribute the handouts on TIM WOODS. However, we did go through it electronically, and among all the team members they remembered what the acronyms stood for. 
  • Submit cat's licensing application. Result: Completely forgot. I put it on  my to-do list just now so I have more visibility to it. 
  • Set up email notifications for Project PP site (1 hour). Result: Not done. I will admit, I've lost motivation for this project since it is technically closed and I have more pressing priorities, but I really should help them out. 
  • Study up on inventory management - i.e. videos on Amazon, etc. Result - done, and decided to share a couple of the videos with the team. 
  • Possibly go to first group study. Result: Done, and I'm so glad we went. We met some really neat people, and felt very welcome and at ease. I'm looking forward to future fellowship. 

Friday
  • Team workshop - should leave with top improvement ideas and next steps. Result: Done, and we got pretty wrapped up in the process, so much that the originally scheduled 2.5 hours turned into almost 4. I try not to do that, but we really needed to power through and get it done. Now we have narrowed the 40+ ideas down to about 25. We didn't have time to vote, but we can do that electronically next week. 
  • Send out meeting notes/action items/notice for next meeting. Done, although it took until about 6 pm on Friday to get it all finished. It was worth it though to do it with everything fresh in my head. 
  • Update site kanban board with next steps and action items. Result: Action items updated, but the idea list hasn't been yet. I might do this today or tomorrow. 

Saturday (birthday!)
  • Finish birthday card for Dad to give to Mom. Result: Not done - ran out of time and decided that I could mail it on Monday and still get it to him in time. 
  • Meet Mom for coffee. Result: Met both of my parents for about an hour. 
  • Ikea trip!! (by my special request - I love Ikea). Result: Done, and it was nice. I had mentally allowed myself to spend $150, but found I only truly wanted/needed about $35 worth of items, and that was okay. We got stuck in traffic on the way home which I did NOT enjoy, but still, it overall was a nice way to spend my birthday. 
  • Jason's Deli for lunch. Result: Did not do - in part because I had gotten my Jason's fix earlier in the week, and I just wasn't feeling like driving a little out of the way to go there. I had a big bowl of popcorn at home instead, and it was very nice :-)
Overall, my birthday was much nicer than it was last year, in part because I got to spend most of the day with people I love as opposed to being alone most of the day like last year, and in huge part because I'm at a better place in my life now with my job and location. Last year was tough. 

Sunday
  • Church. Result: Chose not to go, in part because my husband would be working in the children's area, and in part because the weather is glorious and I just felt like staying home and getting some things done. 
  • Weekly blog recap. Result: Doing it right now!
  • Weekly blog post. Result: Will get this done later today :-)
Reflection: I don't think I needed to break down the daily activities into such a micro level. It took a while to recap all of them, and I don't think the smaller items are as value-added and tend to dilute/detract from the more important goals.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Weekly Goals #29: Day by Day

In the name of experimentation, I'm going to try something a little different this week and lay out my goals day by day. I have found myself doing that anyway each day, but not always using the weekly goals as a reference. I want to try changing the order of the process to see if that makes a difference.

Also, as a reflection from last week, I am going to distinguish between high and low priority goals. I might need another level in there, but I'll start this week with two. High priority goals are in bold. know I'm changing two factors at once, but I'm reasonably confident that both of them will work and I would rather not add a week of delay in implementing both to first trial them one by one.

Monday
Main goal today is to wrap up project P, involving items (1-5)
1. Draft innovation award submission and send to project leader to review (do this first thing to give him time to review before the end of the day). Result: Done. 
2. Review cost savings tracking method with stakeholders. Result: Done, and in doing so, learned of an easier way to find the information than the method I was using. Gained consensus with all participants on the process for calculation. 
3. If/when we gain consensus on the method, finish the tracking for November/December (this will probably take a couple of hours). Result: Done, with savings entered for those months. 
4. Make any needed changes to the innovation award and submit with the estimated yearly benefit from #3. Result: Done. 
5. Update the control plan and submit to my manager and the project sponsor with permission to close the project. Result: Partially done - the plan is updated, but I'm waiting for any final feedback on the savings from the stakeholders. Also, I forgot that I also need to complete the completion summary for the project prior to closing. 
6. Final gate review for one of my green belt's projects & confirm he's wrapping up his other one
7. Go to counseling appointment. Result: Not done, and I'm disappointed, especially because I cancelled it due to some issues with the data collection for the submission for #4. It was partially my fault - I procrastinated somewhat during the day and if I had managed my time better, I think I could have finished in time for my appointment. I did reschedule for week after next. 

Tuesday
1. Review PPT for project D proposal prior to call. Result: Done. I was asked a couple of questions about the details of the analysis on the call, so I'm glad that I went over it prior. 
2. Give 2 hour sharepoint training session - if it extends beyond 2 hours, have them schedule another session. Result: Done, although I was tired during the session and probably not as patient as I should have been. I also probably tried to cover too much in two hours. But, I think the main concepts were effectively taught, and the recipients were grateful. 
3. Project D proposal review call. Done. I think the call went well, and ownership of the next steps were transferred to the other divisions. The site I had built for the project turned out to be useful for document sharing. I also had the opportunity to be honest with our VP about my opinion on the purchase, which he actually agreed with. 
4. Green belt coaching call. Result: Done. The individual mainly needed some guidance on overall project direction, which was relatively easy to provide. 
5. Gather materials for kaizen workshop on Friday. Result: Flip chart, markers, post it notes, process map, improvement ideas, and agendas all ready. I spilled diet Coke all over some of the post-it notes, but had enough of them to make it work. 
6. Go for a trail run (beautiful weather). Result: On the day that I was going to do this, I forgot to bring my running clothes with me, even though I had set them out the night before. But all was not lost - I came home and went for a run in the neighborhood instead. I'm regularly doing 3-5 miles now with relative ease. 

Wednesday:
1. Meet with final team member for Project RH, learn about her process and ideas. Result: Done, and I was incredibly impressed with her initiative and ideas. She had already implementing a major process change, and was eager to participate in future improvements. Our one hour meeting stretched into nearly and hour-and-a-half. I'm very glad to have her on the team. 
2. Finish process map for Project RH with existing improvement ideas. Result: Done, the day before the kaizen workshop. I'm glad I laid out the way I did, although I wish I had allowed for time for discussion while laying out each of the process steps instead of waiting until the end.
3. Show coworker how to download data from a system. Result: Done, although adjusted from the originally plan of sitting down with him since he couldn't get his password reset. I was concerned that when he was ready, I might be traveling, so I put together some work instructions for pulling the data. He was very grateful (he even printed them off right away!) and I put them on the shared site as there might be other people who can benefit from them. 

Thursday:
1. Finish prep for kaizen workshop! Result: Done, although a tough day overall. My fault. 
2. Attend first small group session (7-9 pm) Result: Not done, in part because the group leader didn't contact me, but mostly because I didn't feel like going, to be honest. However, today I gave my contact information again, so we'll see what happens. 

Friday
1. Pick up breakfast for workshop. Result: Done, and the team seemed to appreciate it. 
2. Kaizen workshop (remember to take pics). Result: Done, with good results - one person gave me the feedback that it was "fantastic" and they learned a lot from others' perspectives. I wish I did not have a splitting headache that morning, but I think it went well overall. We did not get through nearly as much as I had planned, but we will make up for it in another workshop next week. Good participation, and I'm even more convinced that the team-based approach is the right one. 
3. Document actions needed from workshop and send to team. Result: Done, as well as developed a Sharepoint site for collaboration after realizing that would be helpful. I'll launch it next week. 

Saturday
1. Take cat to get rabies shot. Result: I really did not want to yesterday as all I wanted to do was nap, but I put my big girl pants on and brought her to the clinic. I'm glad to check that one off the list. 
2. Submit licensing paperwork. Result: Not done - just got the documentation yesterday. We'll do it this week. 
3. Chapter 9 edit & publish. Result: Not done. I am really lacking in motivation on this recently, and I think it has to do with having a rough week. I felt guilty at first for not getting it done, but then I realized that although it's important, feeling guilty is not the appropriate response. It's okay. 

Sunday
1. Church. Result: Done, and a blessing as always. A good reminder to "be at peace with everyone, as much as it depends on us."
2. Pack for trip to Knoxville. Result: 90% done an ready to get up and at 'em at 5:30 tomorrow morning. 
3. Weekly goals recap. Result: Doing right now :-)
4. Next week's goals post. Result: Will do right after this :-)

Other:
1. 2 additional runs. Result: I ran 3 times (at least) this week and about to do a 4th. The running is such a good thing for me. 
2. 1-2 weight sessions. Result: Did one weight session yesterday. I'm okay with thinking about reducing this to once a week. 
3. Request new HSA cards. Result: Done on Monday. 
4. Request reimbursement for HSA. Result: Not done, but need to do this. 
5. Make dentist appointment. Result: Done on Monday for Feb 22. 
6. Book sister's flight in April. Result: Done, and asked my dad to cover one of the flights. This is good for me - I'm not usually used to asking for things like that. 
7. 2 C/I podcasts. Result: I think I've listened to 4-5, mostly when working out. 
8. Dailies ex. Saturday. Result: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday were not good and had a big negative impact on the course of each day. I'm going to keep trying - because it's worth it.
9. 1 challenge log item per day. Result: 7 total items, although I forgot to log a couple of them until the end of the week. What matters most is doing the challenge item, so I'm okay with that!
10. Spend time lounging on the couch reading :-) Result: Done - and very much enjoyed. I'm reading Creating a Lean Culture and Voluntary Madness, as well as a bunch of trash mags :-)


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Weekly Goals #28: PDCA

Last week, the outlook when I set my weekly goals was very positive. This week, it is even more so. I'm absolutely convinced that the goals I've been working toward are aligned with God's purpose for me, as I am seeing the improvements in my overall perspective as well as the results.

As I learn more about hoshin kanri, I am appreciating the importance of frequent PDCA (Plan Do Check Act) cycles. Upon reflection at the three week mark, I'd like to add another activity that I've been testing. Until the end of quarter 1, I would like to do 100 more things that are outside of my comfort zone. Now, these aren't necessarily large things - I'm talking about introducing myself to a stranger, or calling someone instead of emailing them, or going out of my way to give someone positive feedback. I've been logging some of the times I've done this so far this year in my Challenge Log, which now has 7 entries. I also record the results as Circle, Triangle, or X, depending on the outcome. So far 6 circles and 1 triangle (the triangle wasn't because it didn't go well, per se, just that I didn't get the full outcome that I had wanted).

100 challenges over 68 days is about 1.5 a day.  It will be a stretch, but I believe I can do it and will reap some real benefits. It's easy to get stuck in complacency - this is a tangible way to push myself to a new level.

With that in mind, here's this week's goals:


  1. 11 challenge items completed and logged. Result: 4 items logged, which was the same as the week before, so no improvement. I think this was in part due to not making a proactive effort to achieve this every day, but rather recording it after the fact if/when it happened.
  2. Chapters 9 and 10 edited and published (Chapter 9 is carryover from last week). Result: Not done. I have been feeling very unmotivated about the book lately. 
  3. Weekly goals recap and next week's goal post. Result: First is in-progress and second will be done today. 
  4. Dailies - EVERY day (no exceptions planned this time). Result: Good news and bad. The bad: Tuesday-Thursday were struggles. The good: Friday and Saturday, typically tougher days, were actually very good. 
  5. 2-3 runs, including 1 trail run - should be nice weather this week.  Result: 2 done, including one trail run at Bethabara. It was cold, but refreshing. 
  6. 2 weights sessions. Result: Only one done this week, and 20 minutes at that. 
  7. Be fully prepared for fire inspection (first week in Feb). Result: Just need to purchase fire extinguisher and we should be set. 
  8. Physical completed with foster parent paperwork. Result: Done, with paperwork submitted. 
  9. 2-3 CI podcasts. Result: One Gemba Academy and 1+ Kainexus podcasts. Both good. 
  10. Finish Chapter 2 of Beyond Strategic Vision. Result: Done
  11. Finish Chapter 1 of The Cost of Discipleship. Result: Not done, not even a little. :-(
  12. Reach out to my sister more - text at least once a day, call ideally. Result: Done - and we got to have a great conversation on Wednesday evening which had me laughing like crazy, as usual. She's something else :-)

Work specific:
  1. Complete defensive driver training. Result: Done, although it took a while to get the training to launch. Fortunately, the training itself only took about 30 minutes, instead of the 2 hours I was expecting. I did learn that one technique of car-jackers is to rear-end a vehicle, so if I'm rear-ended I should be very cautious about getting out of my car. It's preferable to drive to a public location first. 
  2. Give one of my belts a tour of our facility (counts as coaching session, too). Result: Done, but I was not feeling well so it was somewhat half-hearted. Hopefully it did not negatively impact the tour too much. 
  3. Sit with 4 key process owners and learn about their part of the value stream for my project as well as get some of their initial ideas. Result: Done, with good results. I felt like I connected with each of the people and that I both helped their understanding of the purpose of the project and definitely was helped in my understanding of their processes. As a result, the scope is more focused. 
  4. Create rough draft of process map based on #3. Result: About 25% done. I struggled with what template to use for a while, before settling on one that worked well for a previous project. 
  5. Create and send agenda for 5S kaizen pre-event.  Result: Done. 
  6. Update training overview for 5S kaizen pre-event - more focus on starting with "Why" and less on what 5S is and more on what it can do for us. Result: Not done, but after some planning I realize I had higher priorities to complete first, and that there would be time to do this later, so I'm OK with delaying it. 
  7. Submit project for innovation award. Result: Still gathering information, including how to get a more accurate estimate of the savings. I also learned the due date wasn't until next week, so I shuffled this around. 
  8. Create control plan for project, possibly close it out. Result: Control plan drafted, just need to verify after a conference call next week. 
  9. Send out meeting notices and notes for remaining 2 Feb cadence calls. Result: Done. Did not take long at all with our new tracking tool. 
  10. Learn how to pull tracking data from mainframe database. Result: Done - it was actually easier than the other similar system that I know how to use. I also found an opportunity to teach the person who taught me how to use the other system - he had previously had to wait for someone else to run the report for him. A win-win. 
  11. Set up meeting with other black belt to brainstorm regional alignment ideas. Result: Meeting set up mid-February. 
  12. If time, work on prepping "Idea Box" improvement suggestion system. Result: Done and the pilot was launched yesterday to my project team. Will modify based on feedback and possibly deploy to a larger audience next month. 

Other accomplishments:
1. Went for a couple of nice long walks
2. Enjoyed going to a coffee shop with my husband yesterday
3. Had some opportunity to provide coaching to some of my belts this week
4. Got to speak on the phone with a potential candidate and answer some of his questions about the position. 
5. Showed my manager some basic Sharepoint tools
6. Shared my current workload with my manager after she got a request from her manager who got a request from a chief VP for my help on a project. It would be great for visibility, but I would have to drop some other critical work. They were able to get me a "stay of execution"...a cross-divisional project for me is probably coming, but it is delayed for now. 
7. Got a quote for a Master's certificate in Lean Six Sigma from Villanova University - looking to start this in the fall (IF my book is published first!)
8. Put together a tentative process for tracking some complex savings for a project I inherited. I need to run it by the other stakeholders next week and get their buy-in. 

Reflection: I wish I had prioritized these goals - some of them were definitely more important than others. I will apply that improvement idea to next week's goals. 

Monday, January 16, 2017

Weekly Goals #27: Reset

Work-related goals:

1. Start tracking savings for a project that was handed-over to me. Determine if I will need to be the one tracking or if we can ideally assign the process owner. Result: The conference call started out a little rough, partly because most of the participants did not know who I was nor why I was asking what probably seemed to them as basic questions. I corrected mid-course and it went a little better. We were able to agree on a joint tracking method. I was feeling bad about how I was treated on the call, and assumed it was my fault, but it turns out that there was a long history with my predecessor on the project that probably had many of the participants feeling suspicious of my motives. One of the ways I will try to help clear that up is by submitting the project (without any credit to me) for our innovation excellence award as it certainly qualifies. I did not start tracking the savings yet as the person who will be assigned to do the first part has not yet been identified and trained. I'll follow up next week. 

2. Close out one of my green belts' projects and identify his next one. Result: Done, and I'm pleased with how it went. I looked at our pipeline and selected a possible next project for us to discuss on the call. There was some concern on if the project would be too much additional workload, so I asked if there was a project that would be more in-line with this individual's daily work. He came up with a replication project himself that actually is much higher-value. And because he came up with the project idea, he was very enthusiastic about getting it started. 

3. All day-meeting on Wednesday with a customer - need to get a grasp of the current situation for #4. Result: Good. The meeting was very long, especially by the afternoon, but it was worth it in terms of getting verbatim feedback on how the project was going. Also, I introduced myself to someone I had been conversing with over email before, and enjoyed talking to her in person. 

4. Close out customer project - final gate review and summary. Result: Good - the sponsor definitely agreed that the project was successful. I added a Reflection section at the end of the summary, which was perhaps the most valuable in terms of lessons learned. The sponsor suggested that it might be good to highlight this project at the next general manager's meeting - wow! Project was successfully closed on Friday. 

5. Gain consensus from key stakeholders on charter and launch next project. Result: Mixed. I met with one of the key process owners this week and had a great conversation and I think I got his buy-in to the project. But when I sent him the charter to review, I forgot there were some comments in there about a possible headcount reduction due to order volume decrease (outside of the project). Needless to say, he was concerned and called his manager who called me. He was very nice about it, but I felt terrible - I should have thought to be more careful with that information. Oh well, lesson learned. Project did not launch yet but will next week. 

6. Set up meeting with initial process owner for this project as part of grasping the current situation. Result: This part was good (see above). We talked for almost an hour and a half and I think he is going to be a huge help. I mainly wanted to communicate to him that I don't run projects with the mindset that I'm the hero coming in to fix the process - NO. It is a collaborative effort to continuously improve that is primarily driven by the ideas of those who are directly involved in the process. I serve as the facilitator to these improvements. He seemed relieved to hear that this was the approach we would be taking. 

7. 2 cadence call reviews - will complete January's calls. This includes a review of mine on project related to #1. Result: Complete, with good results. Did not schedule next month's like I would have liked to, but I'll do that next week.

8. Team meeting on Friday - hopefully we will discuss upcoming strategy with new members. Result: I was not looking forward to the meeting due to my workload, but it actually turned out very well. Our small team has connected very well, and we now have the opportunity to build the team further with two more team members. Our manager is very collaborative and welcomes and applies our input, which is very refreshing. 

9. Investigate tuition reimbursement procedure. Result: I got the quotes but they were the wrong ones, and my contact at the university quit. I need to work with the current contact to get the right quotes. I started to look into the process from my company's end, and it's not clearly defined but a couple of people are looking into it further for me. 

Other:

1. Hair appointment on Saturday. Result: Done, with good results! I got a lot of more red put in, and I think it looks good. I'm relieved to have found a good stylist. 

2. 2 weight-lifting sessions - maybe Tuesday and Sunday. Result: Done on Wednesday (shoulders, chest, back) and Saturday (biceps, triceps, some abs). I think 2x a week works well. 

3. 3 podcasts. Result: I listened to Gemba Academy's podcast "How to Innovate" with Geoff Cox and really enjoyed that one. I also listened to a Today's Lean manufacturing podcast. I need to listen to one more, and will probably do so during my run today.

4. At least 2 runs - looking at Wednesday and Saturday due to weather. Would like to do trail run on Wednesday.  Result: Done on Tuesday and Thursday. Both runs were about 4 miles, which is longer than usual for me. Tuesday's run in particular was great - mostly trails at a local college campus. I'm probably going to go for a run today as well to make it 3 this week. 

5. Edit and publish chapter 10 of book -  cutting down on this goal as 2 chapters a week is a lot. With one chapter a week, we're looking at an end date of June 11 for the leanhub.com publish. Then I'll need to proofread / review one more time before my Amazon publish - I can give myself mid-June through mid-Sept for this (3 months). Then it's on to the next project - hopefully beginning my master's certificate around the 1st of October.  Result: I had not finished Chapter 9 - hopefully will do that today. 

6. Finish Chapters 1 and 2 of "Beyond Strategic Vision", taking notes as I read. Result: Finished chapter 1, have not started Chapter 2. I think this goal might be more successful if I commit to doing a couple of pages a day, instead of thinking I have to do the whole chapter

7. Read Chapter 1 of "The Cost of Discipleship". Result: I forgot there was an introduction. I finished the intro and read some of the first chapter, so I'll call this a win. So far, it's good - it talks about the difference between "cheap grace" ('just' being forgiven of our sins) and costly grace (become disciples of Christ). 

8. Keep up with dailies. Make it a good week. Result: Ugh, did good except for Saturday and it wasn't worth it. Next week is going to be better. But, this week was better than last. Progress over perfection. 






Monday, January 9, 2017

Weekly Goals #26: Continuing a Good Start


Last week was a good one in terms of goals - 100% completion, which is a great way to start off the new year. Let's see how week 2 measures up.

  1. Carefully evaluate my next project and make sure it is aligned strategically with our goals. Early investigation has shown that this might not be as high of a value project as initially thought. Once I finish getting the numbers together, I need to discuss with our leadership if this is the best choice for me to be working on next or if we need to pick a more valuable project. I have made the mistake of simply agreeing to work on projects without confirming their strategic alignment as more information is gathered, and I'm going to make the effort to ensure that does not happen again. Report: Gained consensus that this is indeed the highest priority project with the VPs but also got them to agree to a 75% reduction in the initial savings estimate. I could not find the supposed magnitude of savings that they originally estimated, and was able to justify a reduction using the data. We agreed to change the overall project metric to strictly $ savings, as well, so our team has more freedom in how to achieve that savings. 
  2. Figure out how to track the savings for a project at work that I am taking over. Report: Had initial meeting regarding this. I have a slightly better understanding of how to track the savings but, perhaps more importantly, the individual I met with and I agreed on the strategy of trying to first get a process owner to take ownership of tracking the savings. I'll be the back-up plan in case that doesn't happen. There will be a follow-up meeting next week to discuss further. 
  3. Visit to one of our plants about an hour-and-a-half away for a tour and two green belt coaching sessions. Result: Very good - I thoroughly enjoyed getting to meet one of the belts and see her projects. She even thanked me later for the encouragement. I hope I was able to ease the other (prospective) belt's concerns about the upcoming green belt class. Overall it was a good visit that was mutually appreciated. 
  4. Finish out a kaizen project (completion summary and gate review) at work. Result: Done, and my sponsor agreed to close out the project. I might have a follow-up event as a result, but nothing major. 
  5. Weight-training at least 2x. Result: Done, 3x actually. But I found that I can't do every-other day even with rotating muscle groups - there are few shoulder exercises that don't also use biceps and/or triceps, and so I found myself still sore. I'll have to re-think this approach - maybe every two days. 
  6. 2 continuous improvement podcasts. Result: Listened to 3+. One Gemba Academy and 2+ Kainexus podcasts. All were very good, particularly one about practical problem-solving. 
  7. Return library books, get new ones. Result: Done - got Drive by Daniel Pink and Self-Made Man by Norah Vincent. 
  8. Mail card for my brother-in-law's birthday (Wednesday) - first birthday card of the year. Result: Done! It helped prepping the card ahead of time so I wasn't rushed. I even started prepping for the next two upcoming birthdays. I'm really enjoying this. 
  9. Begin reading first continuous improvement book of the year, if it arrives in the mail. Result: It's called "Beyond Strategic Vision" and it did arrive, and I did start reading it. So far, very good overview of the purpose of hoshin kanri combined with practical steps. I'm looking forward to applying it to my personal life. 
  10. Read at least 1 chapter of "The Cost of Discipleship". Result: Sort-of done - I didn't read chapter 1, but I read the lengthy introduction which was an abbreviated biography of Dietrick Bonhoeffer. God truly worked through his life in an incredible way, and I'm looking forward to reading his book. 
  11. Go for at least 2 runs/walks - weather should warm up towards end of the week. Result: Done - I think three walks total. I left work a little early (since I arrived early) a couple of days to beat the darkness and get a walk or run in. Then, I went for a run this afternoon in 60 degree weather - very nice. 
  12. Edit and publish 2 more book chapters. Result: Only one chapter done. I elected to finish painting my kitchen today instead. I probably could have fit both in, but choose not to do so.
  13. Continue daily activities (verse, journaling, food-logging). Result: Did all three of these each day. I need to be more accurate with the food-logging, though. Too often I just estimate and go with "good enough."
  14. Complete 1 entry in "comfort zone" log each day (one example each day where I go outside my comfort zone). Result: I did this 3/7 days. I do admit that writing it down provides a little extra incentive. First, I stopped by one of our VP's offices to check up, and that went very well. Next, I accepted a phone call even though I didn't feel like talking. And third, I engaged a couple in conversation at church. By and large, when I step outside of my comfort zone, there are rewards. 



Monday, January 2, 2017

Weekly Goals #25: All Things New

And so the year begins, bringing with it the promise of the new. The key is maintaining motivation when time threatens to erode resolve. One of my goals is weekly posts about what I hope/plan to accomplish that week, particularly in the areas that relate to my annual goals. I have been doing this infrequently for several years, and have found it to be effective, so I established the goal in 2017 of doing it more regularly.
  1. Strength-training 2x. Probably Tuesday and Saturday.  Result: Done on Tuesday and Friday. I've decided to split my major muscle groups into separate sessions - I think it will give me a better work out to focus only on a few each time and then I can also go more frequently. I have split it up like this: biceps/triceps/abs and shoulders/chest/back. 
  2. Edit and publish 3 more chapters on Lean Hub. Result: 1 chapter done Monday (holiday), 1 chapter done Saturday, and 1 done Sunday. 
  3. Listen to 2 CI podcasts. Result: Done - I listened to one Gemba Academy podcast about Toyota kata, a Kainexus podcast Q & A session, and a Freakonomics podcast about Amos Tversky and Danny Kahneman, two psychologists who started the field of behavioral economics.
  4. Finish books I borrowed from the library and return Saturday. Result: I finished about 3 of the 5 books. It was quite pleasant actually - I would spend the evening on the couch after work, sipping tea and reading. I may be able to finish the rest of them this evening.
  5. Complete 1 green belt coaching session at work. Result: Complete, and also did short coaching of two other belts. It's definitely something I need to practice. 
  6. Finish the work for 1 kaizen project (complete documentation and final review next week). Result: Almost complete - I forgot that in addition to the powerpoint (which I did complete) I also need to fill out a summary. If I had managed my time better this week, I would have gotten to that, but it is okay. 
  7. Schedule yearly physicals. Result: Complete - both mine and my husband's are scheduled for next week. 
  8. Schedule fire inspection. Result: Complete - delegated this one to my husband and he took care of it. 
  9. Continue daily activities. Result: Complete. Wrote down verse and journaled each day, as well as kept track of food log although not as accurately as I need to be. That's something to work on next week. 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

2017 Goals: Hoshin Kanri Style

Hoshin Kanri is a Japanese phrase that means direction management. In church today, our pastor talked about how our decisions set our direction which determines our destination. Hoshin Kanri is a method that basically follows this process:

1. Set overall strategy (I can mine my 'ultimate purpose')
3. Determine 3-5 year breakthrough objectives related to this strategy
4. Set annual goals that will enable you to meet those 3-5 year objectives
5. Decide what metrics you will use to measure progress toward these goals
5. Identify activities that will help reach those annual goals

I roughly used this process to set my direction for 2017, as follows.

The masterpiece


Ultimate purpose:
To love God with my heart, mind, and soul, and to share His love using the gifts and abilities He has given me.

3-5 Year Objectives:
1. Be healthy in mind, body, and soul
2. Share God's love with others
3. Contribute to the field of continuous improvement

Annual Goals and Activities:
1.1 Care for my mind:
      1.1.1 Attend >/= 12 counseling sessions
      1.1.2 Post weekly goals in A Running Tally
      1.1.3 Post quarterly 2017 goal progress update in A Running Tally
      1.1.4 Keep a log of when I go outside my comfort zone and the results UPDATE 1/22: This has                    been going well, so adding a metric for Q1 of a total of 107 entries, then re-evaluate at Q1                    reflection

1.2 Care for my body:
      1.2.1 Personal goal #1
      1.2.2 Personal goal #2
      1.2.3 Strength training and/or yoga 2x per week
      1.2.4 Track my daily nutritional intake
   
1.3 Care for my soul.
      1.3.1 Write verse and thoughts in journal each day.
      1.3.2 Attend church >/= 40 times
      1.3.3 Read the following 3 books:
               a. The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
               b. Confessions by St. Augustine
               c. The Everlasting Man by G.K. Chesterton Removed 1/22
      1.3.4 Attend 2 semesters of small group study

2.1 Complete and publish book
      2.1.1 Publish book 100% on Leanhub.com by June
      2.1.2 Improve book with feedback
      2.1.3 Publish book on Amazon via CreateSpace by October

2.2 Become foster parents
      2.2.1 Obtain foster parent certification. Remaining items:
               a. Fire inspection
               b. Cats rabies shots
               c. Cats licensed
               d. Physicals
               f. CPR / bloodborne pathogens training
      2.2.2 Provide respite care for children

2.3 Love my family and friends
      2.3.1 Give a card and/or gift for the birthdays of 36 people
      2.3.2 Spend time with family >/= 25 times, possibly including:
               a. Trip to see my college with my sister
               b. Play in Feb with my dad and nephew
               c. CO vacation with Shane's family
               d. CO vacation with my family
               e. Oct wedding in Maine
               f. Thanksgiving with my family
               g. Christmas with Shane's family
               h. 4th of July at my house?
      2.3.3 Continue to provide love and support to my younger sister
               a. College trip
               b. Summer visit
               c. Answer her calls whenever I can
               d. Reach out to her daily
               e. Care packages / letters

3.1 Develop knowledge of continuous improvement (CI)
      3.1.1 Listen to >/= 100 podcasts (i.e. Kainexus and Gemba Academy)
      3.1.2 Read >/= 10 books, including:
               a. Toyota Kata
               b. Beyond Strategic Vision
               c. Creating a Kaizen Culture
               d. Creating a Lean Culture
               e. The Power of Habit
               f.  Drive
               g. Consulting for Dummies
               h. Lean Six Sigma for Service
               i. One Small Step Can Change Your Life
               j. The Four Hour Work Week
      3.1.3 Write 20 blog posts about CI (inc. reviews of the above books)
      3.1.4 If #2.1 is done, pursue master's certificate in Lean Six Sigma (Villanova?)
      3.1.5 Attend a lean/CI conference if I have the opportunity
   
3.2 Practice continuous improvement skills
      3.2.1 Execute >/= 4 DMAIC projects
      3.2.2 Execute >/= 3 Kaizen events
      3.2.3 Have >/= 2 coaching sessions with each of my Green Belts

4.1 Other (nice to have, but not necessary)
     4.1.1 Paint my kitchen
     4.1.2 Paint my dining room with my mom
     4.1.3 Paint my front door
     4.1.4 Develop my personal style
   
5.1 Look for additional opportunities for growth and service

I am honestly excited for 2017 - I know God has big plans for me, and my heart is ready to fulfill His purpose for my life.