What's Your Next Move?
Abstract:This article presents an improvement framework for deciding whether to focus on realizing improvements or building competences, taking into account the role of different improvement methods. The framework builds on a European multiyear case study at a manufacturing facility and has been empirically tested for designing better methods to match improvement strategies. The author illustrates how problem solving and appreciative inquiry methods differ in how they initiate improvement, describe goals, and collect knowledge. Problem solving focuses on realization, whereas appreciative inquiry focuses on competence building. The article explains how the two methods' steps can be used to form an improvement method framework that visualizes a combination of possibilities. Examples in the article show how improvement methods can be designed to support different improvement strategies. A framework for designing methods for a particular improvement strategy shows how elements of problem solving and …