A midsized biotech’s CFO recognized the pressing need for his firm to improve its performance. The CFO chartered a new Continuous Improvement department to build employees’ capability to assess and improve their operational areas.
Initially, I was hired to deliver purchased training and to build the consulting practice. After attending the Train the Trainer session for the purchased training, I shared my concerns about the dry, theoretical approach with management, who approved my proposal to develop a case study based class. This approach would allow participants hands on experience applying the principles.
To keep participants engaged, to create a common playing field given the widely varying backgrounds in the class, and to make it easy for students who feared the quantitative material to overcome their fears — I used a case study involving a toy which they enjoyed playing with as they conducted their research.
The class was a huge success with employees - from Administrative Assistants to Attorneys. They shared with me how much they had initially dreaded the class and how now they were coming away having enjoyed themselves and having learned a lot. Close to 1000 employees enthusiastically participated over the 18 months the program was offered.
In addition to the training, I created a 60 page workbook which could be used inside or outside the class to walk participants through the various aspects of analyzing their business operations and overseeing improvement activities.
The class and workbook were extremely well received. Graduates developed a variety of Continuous Improvement skills which they have used to make dozens of Continuous Improvement initiatives successful.