Leadership within an organization serves to improve the performance of the organization. Improvement science is concerned with how to improve quality of products or services in the most effective way. This is concerned with examining the factors and methods that work best to ensure quality improvement. This means that improvement science is an organization learning project and should form an important component of the culture of the organization to continuously improve on the products and services.
Throughout the course I have learned the importance of the principles of improvement science. Some of the principles include understanding the problem and developing a solution that is centered on the user, continuously measuring performance and anchoring the process as a culture of discipline within the organization.
One of the improvement processes that I have experienced is when there was need to improve the contents of a product by the organization that I was working for. The organization had received a lot of feedback about customer satisfaction on the product. The purposeful decision that was made in this case was to improve the product to conform to customer tastes. A small research and development team was immediately constituted and was assigned the task of changing the product design. I was also part of this team. One of the practical realities of the course that impacted on my involvement in the team was the importance of communication and interpersonal skills. These skills are important in promoting group work and ensuring that the team works towards a common objective. I used the practical concepts of the course to help the team identify the problem, design a solution and ensure that the solution fits within the standards of the organization. The advent of technology has resulted in easy corporate communication and made it easy for companies to share information with customers. As this improvement concerned customers, we used social networking sites to communicate the new product to the customers. The changes were reflected mainly in the composition of the product and ensure that it does not negatively affect on customers’ health.
The course has impacted my improvement efforts in different ways. The first way is that through the course I have learned the different principles of improvement science. One of the questions that I feel I will need to research more on is how to improve measurements in order to improve the efficiency of improvement process. As has been mentioned improvement starts with measuring processes and systems. However, organizations do not have effective ways of measuring all their processes and systems and determining whether they are performing at their level best. Without a good measurement it becomes difficult to develop a theory or hypothesis.
The Plan, Do, Study Act (PDSA) cycle of practice improvement is important for any process improvement in an organization. This is a very fast process that involves leaning fast, failing at times and improving quickly. It is important to note that failure is not a problem but a learning opportunity. In my future practice, I will desire to engage more in the PDSA cycle and fully learn from the improvement process. One thing that comes out in organizational learning which I have discovered is that humans are networked communities. We can always accomplish more together. The implication of this is that I will need to change my personality more in order to better facilitate improvement within the department or organization. The control charts is an improvement science tool that can be used for future projects. Control charts are statistical tools that depict outcome patterns over a given period of time. The understanding and use of these tools will help in better measuring of outcomes.