Liking the World Cup and Selling Lean Six Sigma

By in
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I was talking with Forrest Breyfogle tonight after work and we started discussing the World Cup tournament and why some people like watching.  I hypothesized that the folks who played soccer when they were younger were more apt to understand and enjoy watching it. I played in highschool and enjoy watching it while Forrest did not care for it and had never played it.

Forrest followed that it is like watching basketball, since he played it when he was younger, he enjoys watching it.  I dislike watching basketball except for the final tournament games, but I am 5′ 9″ and was never tall enough to play.

Could this relate to why so many lean six sigma practitioners have trouble communicating the benefits of it to their leadership.  When you are a user, it changes your perception of the system.  The basketball player sees the plays, the picks, and the positioning, while I see bouncing balls and shots.  The LSS practitioner sees waste, opportunities, and improvements, while the executive that has never experienced process improvement sees people working hard.

It is difficult to communicate a vision you have gained through an experience to people who do not share the same experience.

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