Global Kata: Success Through the Lean Business System Reference Model

Terence T. Burton, McGraw-Hill, 2015, 368 pp., $50 (book).

Organizations tend to overlook the deep values, behaviors and cultural foundation that make adaptive, systematic improvement so successful. This book describes a lean business system reference model and includes the architecture guidelines, processes and principles of that model.

A major objective of the model and the book is to guide organizations away from the superficial mimicking of lean manufacturing principles and tools from other successful organizations. The book aims at making organizations think, innovate and expand boundaries to become successful in their own way.

Except for an overview discussion, each part of the model is discussed in detail. This includes leadership factors, implementation guidelines, templates, systematic architecture, performance criteria and examples.

I appreciate several points in the book. One is the emphasis on cultural change in general, particularly on how to "improve how you improve." Another one is the importance of top management’s ownership in the change process, and the focus on real communication in the sense of rhetoric and presentation skills. Lastly, the book stresses the message, "Don’t copy, but adapt." You must adapt the model, culture and procedures to your own context.

I recommend this book to all top managers and any others who need to understand that sustainable continuous improvement rests on a strong culture. It cannot rely on methods and tools alone.

Bengt Klefsjö
Luleå University of Technology

Leading With Purpose: How to Engage, Empower and Encourage Your People to Reach Their Full Potential

Marc Koehler, Over and Above Creative, 2015, 184 pp., $24.95 (book).

With this book, Koehler shows how to take a lengthy, multi-page corporate strategic plan and scale it down to a one-page document. This one-page plan should engage employees to buy in to not just their immediate goals, but also the long-term goals of the organization. Leading with Purpose helps organizations get everybody on the same page.

The book is written as a guide to creating an ideal one-page actionable plan for all members of the organization to see the short and long-term objectives. Koehler starts by showing how to start with the organization's long-term vision and how to work that back to an actionable goal for that quarter.

Each of the steps to creating the one-page plan are detailed with meeting guides and sample questions to ask when developing the plan to ensure that the steps are followed and the process stays on track.

Regardless of your team size, this is an excellent resource to get everyone on the same page. It will assist in creating a focused and simple plan of goals and objectives to maintain the focus of the organization’s mission and keep employees engaged in their roles within the organization.

Conor Leahy
San Diego

Insights to Performance Excellence 2015-2016: Understanding the Integrated Management System and the Baldrige Framework

Mark L. Blazey, ASQ Quality Press, 2015, 396 pp., $56 member, $92 list (book and CD-ROM).

Blazy provides a detailed and in-depth explanation of the system with the intent of helping organizations and their leaders who are in pursuit of performance excellence to understand and apply the Baldrige framework through the use of an integrated management system.

The book is comprised of seven main chapters covering the Baldrige criteria. Each chapter—in addition to covering the original language and clearly explaining the requirements within the criterion—includes flow charts and tables that provide a useful summary of the requirements.

The key linkages between the criterion covered in the chapter and other remaining criteria are identified. Examples of effective and ineffective practices from organizations that have pursued the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award are also included.

The author also provides value-added insight to what an organization could potentially experience if it fails to implement the criteria. The book also includes a chapter that has tips to help organizations save time and money while preparing the award application.

There are also two chapters with guidelines on clarifying the Baldrige scoring process that is used by organizations applying for the award as well as the performance-excellence examiners.

I find this book and the accompanying CD-ROM (which includes updated templates) a valuable reference that could be used by any organization seeking sustainable improvements and those organizations pursuing the prestigious Baldrige award.

Herzl Marouni

How to Establish a Document Control System for Compliance With ISO 9001:2015, ISO 13485:2016 and FDA Requirements

Stephanie L. Skipper, ASQ Quality Press, 2015, 156 pp., $42 member, $70 list (book).

This book is about compliance with ISO 9001:2015, ISO 13485:2016 and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements. The foundation of any sound quality management system (QMS) lies in a good document control system.

According to Skipper, neglecting to set up a document control system first is a fatal quality system flaw organizations tend to make.

A successful QMS depends on controlling procedural and record documents from the time of inception through the end of their retention period. This book provides a process-based approach that can be used for controlling all forms of documented information that are required to be managed under the QMS.

The book begins with a discussion of the importance of document control and document management in the QMS. A discussion about the difference between a manual document control system and an electronic document control system follows.

There is a chapter devoted to the true meanings of terms used in document control systems such as controlled document, document control and standard operating procedure (SOP). This is followed by a chapter that covers the process-based approach to document control.

Subsequent chapters include information on a document's life cycle and organization of controlled documents. There is also information provided on how to write control policies, SOPs and work instructions for the documents.

This book uses simple and easy-to-understand language, which those learning about document control systems will appreciate. Where appropriate, specific differences in documentation pertaining to the various QMSs are highlighted. The book includes sample documents to help clarify the explanations provided in the book. It also includes a full set of formatted procedures and document templates available for download.

It is a must-read for quality managers, QMS administrators, quality auditors and all other quality-related staff involved in the design, development and maintenance of a document control system.

Rangarajan Parthasarathy
Harvard, IL

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