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Work Standard Model builds clarity for Story Construction Small Projects Team.

May 23, 2022
In my mid-April news item I introduced the work we’re doing with Story Construction, Iowa. I spoke of the application of Work Standards with the Small Projects Group. Their endeavours have continued largely through ‘learn by doing’ with mentoring via Zoom (1 x 1 hour session per week). Our goal – apply the model you see to their ‘Daily Routine’ of planning and reflecting.

The Small Projects Group Daily Routine has two meeting elements.

  • First is their Toolbox Talk where they confirm what they will do for the day, what they need to do the work (tools and materials), and what improvement activity they will focus on.
  • Second is the Tailgate Talk at the days end which is largely a reflection – what they actually did, what the gaps were compared to that planned (if there were any), their learnings with respect to the gaps, thus what they need to adjust for tomorrow. They follow the same thinking with respect to the planned improvement activity.

Both of the above are done on a whiteboard split into two halves – left half for the Toolbox Meeting (start of day), right half for the Tailgate Talk (end of day). As I mentioned last news item, not a computer in sight.

After determining the Output Standard for the Toolbox Talk we recognized that there was a need for a ‘machine work standard’ equivalent being the agenda for the meeting. (They already had an agenda, but ‘defining normal’ brought about important adjustments that have been adopted.) Then the third work standard, the people one, focussed on the human behaviors/actions during the Toolbox Talk itself. A document existed covering such behaviors but, again, defining ‘normal’ brought about excellent discussion and subsequent adjustment that has been adopted.

We are now following the same pattern as that above for the Tailgate Talk. It’s been interesting how there exists a bit of a disconnect between the ‘reflect and adjust’ part of their ‘plan, do, reflect and adjust’ within the Daily Routine. Defining ‘normal’ has exposed that mild disconnect through sometimes robust discussion. We’re working through the adjustments as I write.