We wanted to go into more detail about our first event with The Rebuilding Center.
It included two main activities; the first was a secret shopping experience. We had five Lean Portland volunteers and five Rebuilding Center employees. The Executive Director and Manager were working the floor, so the staff could work to improve the organization. We paired up and went off to go shopping for the materials for typical DIY projects, like building a dog house, or replacing an exterior door. This allowed the staff and volunteers to gain a first-hand experience about what it is like to be a customer.
The second activity was to set a vision of that customer experience. They acted out a newscast interview of an employee and a customer, based in the year 2020. It was a lot of fun, and we were able to work through current state and future state activities without the burden of doing technical process mapping.
Here is a video of Steve interviewing an employee and a customer, as if he was a news anchor.
At the end of day one, we had a dozen ‘Just Do Its’ – small activities (about an hour worth of work each) that the team was going to work on in the next month, along with four big opportunity areas.
At this point, our intent for day two was to flush out the four big opportunities, and figure out how we could make progress on the first one, and test the ideas that we have for a solution during the day. This would bring the spirit of Kaizen to the team.
We met the team for an hour after work, which was one week before the full-day Saturday event. During that time, we uncovered the fact that they were really keenly interested in working on improving the “getting information to guests” opportunity. The other big opportunities that were of high interest are the donation process and the checkout process.