The Fish(bone) Gets Legs

Taking traditional tools into the digital age

On a recent trip to Las Vegas, we hailed a ride-share and were surprised to find ourselves in an autonomous car. The technology was really cool, and I was super excited to experience firsthand something we’ve written about often in QP.

But the tried and true will always have its place. As evidenced by the fact the “self-driving” car had a driver (or at least someone in the driver’s seat) who assumed the controls when the car wasn’t in autonomous mode. And there was another guy in the front seat directing the driver while explaining the technology.

Sometimes simple works best. But that doesn’t mean that simple shouldn’t be built upon.

Take the fishbone diagram. One of the most useful and popular tools in the quality toolbox, it was developed in the age of paper and pencil, and is a prime candidate to spread its wings—er, fins—and swim into the digital age.

Fish(bone) Stories” proposes applying a mind map to the traditional fishbone to add digital depth to your data. The technique provides users the ability to apply organizational structure to represent complex ideas graphically. The author also suggests sources to help in your efforts.

The Power of Proactivity” also offers a new twist on a traditional tool. The author suggests the addition of “understand” at the beginning of the plan-do-check-act cycle. Find out how the addition of understand makes this practical tool even more powerful.

Seiche Sanders

Seiche Sanders

Editor in Chief and Publisher

We listened to you!

During the past couple years, we’ve received occasional feedback that the text of QP articles can prove difficult to read for some. “Eye” agree! To enhance readability, beginning with this issue we have adjusted the text weight of our body copy, increasing the amount of ink used to print each character by about 25%. The additional ink increases the contrast between the text and paper, resulting in increased legibility. See for yourself!

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