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.

  • 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. 

  • 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. 

  • 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. 

  • 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. 

  • 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. 

  • 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.