In my operations management class, we covered a topic on business process improvement, which is simply a systematic approach to help an organization optimize its processes to achieve more efficient results. It involves a four step (PDCA) cycle— Plan, Do, Check and Act. The cycle starts with a Plan where the business/operations/process leader draws up a plan for performance objectives that need to be met by the organization, and what processes need to be set up meet these objectives, measured against certain key performance indicators. The next step is the Do, where the plan is put into action, processes are being worked with the goal of meeting the stipulated performance metrics. Next is the Check phase where the actual performance is compared against performance targets, and performance issues are identified. Then there is the Act phase where an analysis is done on the process to see how it can be improved, for areas in which performance fell short a root cause analysis is done. When all these are done, the next phases is the Plan phase, and the cycle continues again.
In every area of life we ought to have a process of improvement that is patterned after this PDCA cycle. This is the attitude of excellence (spirit of excellence). It is an attitude that seeks continuous improvement until the highest potential is reached. Excellence is first a spirit in that it starts from an attitude within which is of the Spirit of God, before the outward manifestation is seen. Anyone who embraces the spirit of excellence over time would eventually rise to the top. The simplest metric for checking productivity are results. Jesus in Luke 7:35 spoke concerning His ministry saying “wisdom is justified by her children”. In essence He is saying results don’t lie. Whatever you call yourself, or pride yourself in doing, your results will always speak the truth.
So what’s your plan? I’ve heard it said that having no plan is a plan to fail. Successful people plan their lives daily, as well as make plans for the accomplishment of goals. When you plan you are visualizing yourself at the finish and charting the course as you see it in your heart on paper. As you plan set milestones, these are your measures of progress en-route to your destination. At the same time, planning endlessly without any action accomplishes nothing. A plan remains a plan until something is put in motion. Don’t fall into the trap of overwhelming analysis which leads to paralysis. You’re stuck because you’re waiting for that piece of extra information that will cause you to act. Don’t be afraid, simply lean into the task and learn as you go ahead. Check yourself at the different milestones, ask yourself if you’re moving as quickly as you ought to, and whether you are still on track in the fulfillment of your goals. Whatever the case is from your self-check, take the necessary action to put you back on course for success, and from there go back to planning. On the path to your destination, you will need to make many course corrections. It is the way of life, so don’t get tired, keep at it, and make sure you keep the goal clearly in front of you.
At each step of the way pay attention to your results, they don’t lie. Try new behaviors as led by God, and counseled by others, and see what works. Continue doing what is working and stop what isn’t.
Here are steps I am taking for self improvement