The time you wished your son said: “hey Dad I broke it…”

Yup, it happened to me this past weekend.  About to have a party for my daughter, and she goes: “Hey Dad the toilet is leaking”…  Silence….  Followed by… Are you kidding me???  Guilty look from the son… I didn’t do it… When deep down you know it was him. Cracked toilet tank, and water everywhere.
You may be wondering at this point, what does this have to do with process improvement?  Let me enlighten you!

Today I will talk about 3 keys and how this applies:
  1. Be prepared
  2. Be organized
  3. Not all improvements are worth it

Be prepared

This goes beyond what you think.  In the thick of things I had to react quickly, assess the situation and act quickly.  This compares to what you do every day in your business.  There will be things you come across that will require you to jump into action.  The more you are prepared for the unpredictable, the better off you are.  In business they refer to these as low occurrence, high impact events.  Because I was prepared, the situation did not get worse…  I would have been hosting a party, and water would have started coming down the ceiling.  Not so good…

Be organized

Because I am handy and keep the right tools around, I was able to have everything ready to go.  Process improvement is all about preparing properly when you are about to complete a task.  Save yourself multiple trips to the store/garage, by laying out exactly what you need before you begin.  Five minutes in planning mode, saves easily 3 hours of frustration.  I will admit, that while I had everything laid out (not by size or color… LOL) I had to make a trip to Home Depot…  Of course one of the bolts on the toilet snapped, and I had to go to plan B.

Not all improvements are worth it

On my trip to Home Depot, I needed the wax ring for the bottom of the toilet.  And there is was… a 10 year warranty part for a few bucks more claiming to make the perfect seal!  Something told me… be prepared and buy the wax ring too.  So I did…  Got home with my new and improved ring, put it down and the toilet did not fit…  Luckily I had bought the wax ring that only had the 3 year warranty (by the way it was 400% cheaper).  My point here is that test and check-out so called improvements before putting all your eggs in one basket.

Summary

While this was a humorous situation after the fact, I did avert disaster by preparing, and being organized.  Don’t let this happen to you… 😃 Always view things to the improvement mindset that I have shared with you, and you will ensure better success with everything you do.  It can be applied to fixing a leaking toilet, or a complex process at work on in your business that requires several people.
And yes, the picture shown is the actual broken tank I took out…  I had to change out both the tank AND the bowl,. because there are no “replacements” that I could find to fit what I had.
Until next time, maybe with not quite as much humor 
Joeri