Intro to A3 Thinking

When confronted with a problem, do you jump to “solving” it only to find it return? Many things we perceive as problems are only symptoms of a larger issue. When we only address the symptom, the underlining issue will continue to fester.  Learn how to apply the scientific method of Plan, Do, Study, and Adjust to go beyond treating the symptoms and identify the real problem.

In this course, participants will learn how to apply this P-D-S-A cycle and capture their thinking on an A3 document.  During the “Plan” section, participants will capture important background information and identify critical elements in the current condition.  Next, participants will articulate an objective problem statement and identify the desired state or target condition.  From the identified gaps, participants will develop potential countermeasures to address the root causes.  From this plan, experiments will be defined in the “Do” section.  Performance against these countermeasures will be “Studied” so adjustments (“Adjust”) can be made.  As participants capture these P-D-S-A components, they will also learn how to share their thinking to engage and communicate with others to gain deeper insights.

At the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Define where A3 thinking fits in the larger context of organizational excellence
  • Describe the ideal behaviors required for the practice
  • Describe the thinking process embedded in the A3 form
  • Practice applying the thinking process to a problem in the work

Schedule: 1-day (8:00 am - 4:00 pm)

Pre-reading:  None

Recommended Reading: Managing to Learn: Using the A3 management process to solve problems, gain agreement, mentor, and lead by John Shook

Recommended Prerequisite Sessions:  None

Target audience: Clinical and nonclinical leaders across the healthcare industry including physicians, nurses, and healthcare executives

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