During Lean Summit 2012, keynote speaker Laurie West promoted Lean transformation using Policy Deployment, another name of Hoshin Kanri. During his speech, Mr West listed five obstacles hindering the strategy deployment:
- People can’t implement something they don’t know
- People can’t implement properly something they don’t understand
- People can’t implement something they don’t stand for
- People quit implementing if negative side effects appear
- Management does not pay enough importance to "How to"
These obstacles call for Prerequisite Tree (PRT) one of the Thinking Processes (TP) tools, designed to bypass or neutralize obstacles that stay in the way for fulfilling a given objective.
Prerequisite Tree leading to Hoshin Kanri
In a PRT, the objective is in the topmost scare cornered box, written in present tense, a way to state firmly there is no doubt about this objective to become a reality.
In our case, the objective is stated as: "Strategy is deployed and implemented with success".
Yet five obstacles are in the way. Starting bottom left, the first states " People can’t implement something they don’t know".
To overcome this obstacle, an Intermediate Objective (IO) is necessary. IOs are stated in present tense and our first one reads "Strategy is communicated". Once this objective reached, e.g. communication about strategy done, the obstacle “People don’t know” is no more valid.
Reading a PRT is simple; obstacles are placed in hexagons, while Intermediate Objectives are placed in scare cornered boxes. There is a timeline to be considered, a logical progress from the lowest level obstacle to the topmost objective, hence this PRT is to be read from bottom to top.
The right branch figures when and how People will be actively involved in Policy / Strategy deployment and implementation.
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