Ops Cast

Applying Lean Methodology in Marketing and Revenue Operations with Rutger Katz

March 11, 2024 Michael Hartmann and Rutger Katz Season 1 Episode 108
Ops Cast
Applying Lean Methodology in Marketing and Revenue Operations with Rutger Katz
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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Explore the transformative power of lean methodology in the marketing realm with Rutger Katz, a luminary in digital strategy and a maestro of marketing technology. With Rutger's rich background in neuroscience and an impressive journey from Capgemini to pioneering consultancy, we dissect the application of lean principles to the fluid and dynamic world of marketing. Uncover how to craft strategies that resonate with a customer-centric approach, distill the essence of purpose, process, and people, and effectively manage resources to carve a lasting impact in your industry.

Venture into the trenches of operational efficiency as we unravel the three P's of lean methodology that are revolutionizing marketing operations. Hear a compelling case study from a food relief organization, where lean thinking transformed their operations, and discover how tools like the Hoshin Kanri framework and the Kano model can fine-tune your strategic alignment and customer experience efforts. This knowledge-packed exchange promises to equip marketing professionals with the prowess to prioritize work and manifest their value within any organization.

Embrace the spirit of Kaizen for continuous improvement and witness how incremental enhancements are key to triumph, as illustrated by the success stories from the Tour de France. Learn how the "Five Whys" and "Fishbone Diagram" can be leveraged to dig deep into the root causes of challenges and inspire a culture of self-motivated growth. This episode isn't just about refining processes; it's about steering transformational change and propelling your team towards victory—one small, calculated step at a time.

Resources mentioned during the episode:

  1. Applying Lean Methodologies in Marketing Presentation
  2. LinkedIn Post - Lean: StreamliningMarketing and Revenue Operations

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Speaker 1:

Hello everyone, Welcome to another episode of OpsCast Talk to you by marketingopscom and powered by the Mopros. I'm your host, Michael Hartman, flying solo today for a variety of reasons that we can go into when Mike and Naomi can join again. Today we are going to be talking about how to apply lean methodology within marketing and revenue operations, so to join me in the conversation today is Rutger Katz, currently Senior Digital Strategist and Marketing Technologist at Conclusion Consulting. Rutger is a marketing operations leader and digital strategist with a deep passion for steering organizations through digital transformation towards becoming customer-centric powerhouses. His career is a mix of roles where data and technology meet customer experience and marketing. His journey began in neuroscience, which I would love to dig into if we have time, but where he researched the application of virtual reality and bodily illusions, like the principle of the rubber hand illusion, and social robotics. He proceeded to work at Capgemini in customer data analytics, where his work with global clients and social listening and digital marketing set the foundation for his expertise in marketing technology. Rutger actively shares his knowledge through LinkedIn, which I can attest to public speaking and now podcast guests, thanks to this and probably others focusing on applied innovation, sort of AI, digital strategy, integration of technology and marketing ops. He has a passion for exploring and applying various technologies, methodologies and theoretical models. This led to an adoption model for CDPs which can be applied to most more tech in the top of for today, the application of Lean in marketing and revenue operations. So, Rutger, thank you for joining us today, especially since it's I don't know exactly what time it is there, but it's evening for you in the Netherlands, right?

Speaker 2:

It is 6pm right now. Yeah, I got my dinner in and jumped behind my PC to have this podcast, mike All right, thanks for having me.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's good to have you. And so, and we might want to say, we are recording this on Leap Day 2024. So got this extra day for an extra episode. So how about that? All right, so let's get started. Rutger, you started your agency consultancy with the last year, so what led you to doing that? You know, I kind of walked through probably a truncated version of your career journey, but yeah, what kinds of projects and stuff are you working on with your clients at your current place?

Speaker 2:

Sure. So I've been a consult most of my career and it feels very comfortably. I picked it out for my studies because I wanted to learn as much as I could within a short amount of time as possible and I got lucky in having to work with a lot of global organizations in different industries and very, very colleagues. I've worked with clients of all different stages of maturity, so those that just started with implementing the CDP because they want to do more impersonalization, or they just started using marketing automation in B2B, and, on the other hand, I've worked with implementing social analytics, did an express action modeling, and I was lucky enough to be able to set up my own innovation lab at Kebgemlai, which was a ton of fun because you get free toys and attention and trips. Yeah, and in terms of clients, currently I'm working on a completely new digital platform still technology for our biggest HVAC organizations in Netherlands, and these kinds of activities just come and go, and right now I'm also focusing more and more on moving away from just customer experience to also think about hey, can we move a little bit more towards sales, can we move a little towards customer success or customer support? And that's exactly one of the things I'm doing at my current line. We are looking at sales and marketing together and seeing, okay, what are the solutions that are actually fit to work with both departments.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, well, I mean, I like to think that I try to think about that full process even in just marketing, right? What is the customer's experience all the way from prospect through hopefully becoming an advocate, right? So I think it's all connected. So I would really love to dig into the neuroscience background, but there's a rabbit hole that I think we could take up the hook. So done because I have some familiarity with it. My wife worked for a research organization that did stuff with that for a few years. But let's keep going. So I know, you and I, when we first talked about this, this idea of lean methodology, I think my first question and maybe the same for some of our audience was oh, this is, you're talking about lean Six Sigma, but I think, if I remember right, this is something different, maybe slightly related. But can you walk through? When you use the term lean methodology, what does that mean? How is it related to, maybe to others or not?

Speaker 2:

Sure. So lean Six Sigma is kind of like a bigger version and a different version of lean. So if we look at lean itself, it was produced by Toyota back in, I think, the second, the 19, or 20 hundreds actually, and the lean Six Sigma is just a statistics component which you don't find in base lean. It was the lean methodology itself was focused on maximizing value and minimizing ways, and part of that is what they call a de-mic process, which is define, measure, analyze, improve and control a process, and where Six Sigma is focused specifically around those processes and it uses statistics to limit the defects to no more than 3.4 million per sorry, 3.4 per a million opportunities of errors, which is the six standard deviations from the mean. So that's where the Six Sigma comes from. But Six Sigma is mostly applied in manufacturing, for instance, AI chips right now. Right, If you're producing a whole ton of AI chips every step of the way, you need to minimize the amount of error effects, because you can throw weight into our product.

Speaker 1:

Right, I mean it becomes an exponential issue. The more steps and the process rates. Okay, Makes sense.

Speaker 2:

But for most processes, especially if we're looking, if we're talking about marketing, which we're talking to us today, 3.4 per million opportunities is not something that we are aiming for, because that is way too, way too nitty-gritty Right 4.4. We're talking about what we're working on.

Speaker 1:

So, just for audiences not seeing me, I've been sitting here sort of smiling and smirking because I can use this a little bit to get on my soapbox that I think more marketers need to understand statistics, like truly not just like how do you generate numbers, but how do you put data together, and so I will use that as an opportunity to reinforce my belief that there's an important skill to have, especially in this day where, yeah, we have more data than we know what to do with and knowing how to apply it, even in the age where AI might come in and do some of the heavy lifting of data preparation and normalization all that. When you get output of an analytics that happens through AI you need to be able to evaluate whether or not it was.

Speaker 2:

Whether that makes sense. Yeah, yeah, if you're a million customers, then you need to do statistics. If you're B2B and you have only 100 customers, it's not as interesting, I'd say.

Speaker 1:

But I think having that skill set is still important Absolutely.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely. I agree completely. There's this very interesting. I love this book called Factfulness, which is about the usage of statistics Factfulness, factfulness. It is a great read. It has a lot of good stories about the application of statistics and how people can get confused by the assumptions that they have about large numbers, thinking, oh, then it has to be A, whereas if you really interpret it correctly and if you ask the right questions like, okay, based on how large of a population are we talking about, then you understand oh wait, it actually not that big of a change.

Speaker 1:

Yeah Well, I think my big thing about it I was talking to somebody just earlier this week is, I think if you don't understand how some of these statistical terms are done, how they're calculated, what the process was behind it, it's easy to be susceptible to I'll call it false advertising. I always come back to one of my favorite Mark Twain quotes their lives, damn lives and statistics Anyway. So I'm sorry I took us off in that direction, but I had to take advantage of the opportunity.

Speaker 2:

That's a rabbit hole we're jumping over now, Michael.

Speaker 1:

Yes, okay, we will claw our way back out and not follow Alice down the hole. I just want to make sure. So, if I understood you right, right, lean is a more generalized methodology looking for efficiencies and things like that, and the Six Sigma variant is a variant of it that is specifically focused on statistical analysis and probably most appropriate for repeatable processes and manufacturing environments. Okay, got it.

Speaker 2:

Manufacturing environments, especially yeah.

Speaker 1:

Okay, now I get it. That makes total sense. I don't even think I picked that up from our last conversation, so thank you for that. All right, so it sounds like there's also maturity levels for understanding these methodologies or being seen as like a certification level, and you mentioned to me that you had recently gotten a green belt or gone through training for green belt level. So what did you learn from that? How does that apply and I know we didn't talk about this, but what are the levels for those certifications in Lean methodology?

Speaker 2:

So you have three levels Yellow belt, green belt, black belt and then you have the black master belt, which is like the Holy Grail. Yellow belt is mostly theoretical. Okay, I understand the concepts, I understand the frameworks. Green belt you're actually applying it. So I had to apply it in a use case. We went through a whole client case For us. We did research on our own organization. Okay, where can we find efficiencies? We'll go through the entire process of what you do in Lean. So you've proven. Okay, you understand, you know how to do a Lean process. So that's the green belt certification that I did in fall and now I've started with my black belt training. The first day it's actually tomorrow, which is the next level where green belt you can do it, for instance, within the marketing department. Black belt is where you would look across departments at a more strategic, you know higher organizational level to find efficiencies, to find, you know, improve to value stream. In that sense, and when I did the course for the first time, you know I saw Lean pop up here and there during my career, usually at banks, for whatever reason, and when it started for me it was just a candy shop of frameworks and structures which consultants like me love.

Speaker 1:

Of course.

Speaker 2:

Because then we can sort of fit the chaos at least in my head, the chaos that's in my head of ideas and frames. Oh hey, here's something where it actually fits in very neatly how can I improve processes within marketing organization, within the marketing operation? Here are some tools which I can apply very easily to cover a certain question or to cover a certain issue that I'm encountering of. Okay, I'd like to improve this process. I know I should. Do I have an urgency somewhere? No, okay, how do I? What can I use to cover up that or show that demonstrated urgency to the rest of the people? So they, oh yeah, we should change that process.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

And that is where I really liked it.

Speaker 1:

I'm, having done work as a consultant in my career and having written methodologies at one point, what I find the value of this methodologies and those templates is not so much. Well, I've seen them where they where some consultants use them as a crutch, so they are very it's kind of like. Sorry to all the PMI certified people, though, but I've worked with PMI certified project managers who are terrible and they know the models and everything else, but they don't know how to apply them. And I think these templates and methodologies should be seen as a tool, and where you get real value is where you can leverage those and adapt them to a specific scenario, and I think that's what I'm hearing from you is that the the part of the methodology provides that, and then these certification levels help you develop that skill set of knowing how and when to use different parts of it and how to adapt. You know, adapt them to the scenario. Okay, I am swinging for the fences today. I Don't even know if that applied to that. Does that, does that, even that analogy even ring true? Like it's a baseball thing? So I don't know if that works for those of you in Europe. I.

Speaker 2:

Do know about baseball money balls so I have a good idea of what baseball is about. But it is not as big here as it is in the US.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I'm sorry, I Don't know any cricket, you know? Okay, yeah, well, so I was on a call the other day with people who mostly in Europe and Africa, and I said I'm, I'm the, I'm one of the Few Americans who's following six nations right now. Right, so, I'm a rugby fan so awesome, and I'll watch the tour. I'm big tour fan, so, okay, so, let's, what? So when you and I talked to again I'm coming back to that part of the lean methodology and I think you've hit on this a little bit it's, it's, its goal is to help Organizations, do you know, with doing the right things and doing them the right way. Right, so it sounds. That sounds. Yes, absolutely, I think we could all get behind. That sounds simple, but there's, I'm sure, more nuance, that can you explain a little more about what that means? And, well, we can, I can, I can hold my next question and maybe you'll touch on it, but I think to me, the hard part there is what are the right things? Right?

Speaker 2:

but knowing what that is.

Speaker 1:

Yes, and I'll give you. I will give you another analogy. So I'm a big fan of like Personal Tools for improving your efficiency. So I was a Frank the Covey fan. There's Eisenhower matrix and they, they all have some sort of like prioritization. How do you prioritize the to-dos or tasks on your list? And, and I always tell people like, the model seems simple, it's knowing which ones are the high priority or in the different range, right yeah, important but not urgent, or important versus urgent, and so I think that I would love for you to dig into that as a specifically, if you can.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I will absolutely. So maybe just start at the basics for those of those of the people who don't really know lean. So they build it around three P's Purpose the right thing, process the right way and then people, the ones that are doing it. And so the goal always has been to sort of enhance efficiency, productivity and customer satisfaction while cutting waste. In for instance, one of the videos that we saw, they applied it very successfully to the volunteer group that was packaging food relief in the in the US. So you saw that they took a long time, you know putting every, you know can of beans and and and today's potatoes, whatever it was in the specific box, and they used the lean methodology to figure out Okay, how can we quick, as quick as possible, as efficiently as possible? Yeah, as many boxes ready within a certain set of time. So you know, they reorganized the room, they, they change people's position to change people's tasks and it's fine. Okay, that's the best way of doing it.

Speaker 1:

So I'm wondering if I was in that video, because I have been one of those people, yeah, yeah, through my church We've, you know, filled those boxes and exactly get a bunch of people who don't know what they're doing. And I Think we were all aiming for perfection, right, which is probably not really what is needed, but anyway, sorry.

Speaker 2:

So. So when you mentioned right, the right things, lean has a couple of tools In there to help organization. Okay, let's identify the right things and then also make sure that we keep focusing on the right things that we don't you know, we don't have any scope creep or or Annoying requests that nobody actually wants to do. And it was also one of the the things I hear from from looking through LinkedIn, hearing the people from marketing operations here in people revenue operations that they're getting requests that they don't add any value, that they don't have any strategic value. You know, for instance, a last minute request to start and launch a new campaign because we need to deliver more leads Right before the end of the month, or whatever. And then, sure, you'll get leads, but those won't be sales qualified leads, they'll be useless. But wait you, you got the KPI of leads. So I think a lot of us are challenged in in these positions that we don't really have a lot of tools or frameworks in In. You know how to start the discussion at least challenge the work that we are getting thrown over the fence or or or from higher up. And I'll give a brief description of a couple of those. So for me, the one I really like the most. I think this is the my best, my favorite one is the Ho Chi-Ni, which is a X matrix, they call it, and it aligns your, your company goals of three years right, strategic goals with one year. So the things you want to do this year, you break it down in link with activities over the top. So, okay, which activities does that mean for my department, for my mobs department, whatever? And then on the right hand side, you cover that with KPIs and the ones actually responsible for the activities. So in one overview, you have who's responsible for which activities and how do your activities actually pull back towards the global and strategic goals, so that whenever someone asks you, hey, can you do this for me? And you can. You know, look, here is the, the ocean matrix. No, no, we're not doing that this year because we are focused on these topics. These are K our KPIs to. You know, get our strategic goals for the year in place. Everything else goes to the bottom of the prioritization list. Sorry for that.

Speaker 1:

So can I. So this is host HOS. Host, hos I N Hoson.

Speaker 2:

HOS HIN Okay yes, okay.

Speaker 1:

So interestingly, literally today on LinkedIn, I saw I think it was Darrell Alfonso who posted a Poll and it had to do with you know what are some of the challenges with people understand what market ops does, and I in my I've had this conversation a couple of times and I think the part of it is when I think this might be going for me in tying it back to marketing ops folks, is this might provide a framework for you to not just push back and say no, right, which is maybe what you do is, but to change the. The way that you are seen is where you're being Strategic and being strategic about how you work with the organization, so you can tie those things back. My guess is most people will not immediately be able to Say no on things. There'll be a lot of pressure for highly visible things like turning around leads happens all the time. And, at the same time, I think you can start to use something like this as a tool, for this is how we're thinking about, how to prioritize our limited resources, but people, technology, time and money and I think that was what I think I want our listeners to take away from this is think about this as a, as a tool for Not necessarily of a full methodology, but tools that you can use in your tool belt to help you be seen as more strategic, without just simply saying no, that's a stupid thing to do, which I sorry to all of our. You know, I think, a lot of marketing apps, folks who Complain about this and are in search of ways to change that, that perception.

Speaker 2:

I think everyone within marketing operations and revenue operations wants to have the strategic talk and Absolutely they have the, the baggage, the, the accordance of higher up. Okay, what you're doing is actually no strategic in nature. These are Activities that we want you to do because they are attributing to our strategic goals for this year. Everything else Waste. Don't focus on it. You have my blessing of saying no to things that are falling off. So another thing which I like on doing the right things is called the KNO. The KNO is free bars and it's a good way to plot your CX related activities. So you have a line which is basics, line which is prestige, and the line that is sort of the while factor, and it goes on one axis. It is the amount of effort you have to put in and then the amount of benefits you're getting from it. I'd have to do it in a visualization, because we're talking on a podcast and this is something that you would like to see. Yeah, yeah. I know you share. You share some stuff.

Speaker 1:

We'll, we'll, we'll try to put that into the description or or when we post about it. Share some of those things.

Speaker 2:

So the thing on the basis so let me just explain the three lines very quickly. Imagine you've got a hotel, right, you've got in every hotel. Which makes it a hotel is that there is a bedroom, right those. That's a basic. You need a better. When you're in your hotel, right when you're, whatever your, your engagement with your customer is, whatever your product is, you need to have the basics in order. If it doesn't function, you can forget about any customer satisfaction whatsoever. So that's a basic you need to have an order doesn't need to be excellent in quality notes at a certain amount of time. They're sort of a cut off of when it will increase or add value to the you know net promoter score, or yeah, there's just like a baseline expectation you have to meet. Exactly.

Speaker 1:

Exactly, and after that you can differentiate.

Speaker 2:

After that you differentiate. Then you go into the prestige. Now the prestige will be something like I've got a good bathroom, you know, something like a bath, I'm happy. I'm very happy if my hotel room has a bath and has a bath that's large enough to fit my shoulders in so I don't have to sort of squeeze in and sit upright very awkwardly. I'm very happy with that stare. It doesn't need to be, it's still a hotel room. If it's not there, I'm very happy. That stare, for me it's a very big prestige component. And then the wow factor is something that if it's there, it surprises you. You can really win points by it and something like that will be like getting everything just right good customer service, proactive communication, personalized here and there. That is that prestige, that finesse stuff. If the other two are not in order, the prestige stuff won't really matter, because you still have sort of like a disconnect between oh, I've got very nice people at front desk and they're very nice to me, but my hotel room is just very basic. So it's sort of a disconnect for what I'm experiencing.

Speaker 1:

So could I do a little quick thought experiment? My mind immediately went to this could apply to culture within our organization. So if you get, say, some sort of great benefit or something you think that will appeal to people, like snacks or money towards having a home office if it's a remote thing but otherwise the underlying culture is not great that benefit really doesn't solve the baseline expectation.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely not. It's exactly like an employee experience. In that matter, culture is a basic. A good manager is a basic. It's not a prestige. If it's a poor manager, people will just go away. They'll quit whatsoever. Payment is something that's a prestige. People would go for a lesser paid job. If there's a good working culture, if there's a good manager, they'll be okay with it. It's a very good pay. They'll be very happy with it, but it's not really that large of an influence if the basic is in order.

Speaker 1:

I mean and I'm not an expert in this, but my the things I've heard often when it comes to employee satisfaction, money, compensation is certainly a mix, but it's not the biggest differentiator in that you mentioned your direct manager and culture and things like that tend to have a bigger outsized influence.

Speaker 2:

Then the wow factor. For instance, at my office we're very lucky, we have our own free barista and we have a very good feud. That is a wow factor. That is something that I didn't expect.

Speaker 1:

But every day.

Speaker 2:

I'm up there and getting a very nice coffee Nice.

Speaker 1:

All right, okay, so we've got these different models of identifying the right things. So the other half of this is the right way, which, if I understood it right, is about process optimization. So how do we understand current processes and how technology can help? Should the process be adjusted first than the technology? Well, so, first off, I have a little bit of a hard time going right to the right way, anything where it says the right, the right that I struggle with, because it assumes there is one answer, which I find difficult to accept it's the same with the right thing and the right way.

Speaker 2:

There is no ideal solution.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 2:

I mean.

Speaker 1:

This is my hang up with the term best practices.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. I can imagine, I can imagine.

Speaker 1:

So anyway. So do you have similar things on the right way, that tools or ways of thinking about that?

Speaker 2:

Okay, so I think Lean is very much focused about the process optimization. So that is really the core, I feel the core of Lean. But if you don't do the right things, then whatever you do in the right way and process optimization, it doesn't really matter.

Speaker 1:

But if we're all assuming so sorry. So this also just like. This literally just hit me and it ties back to my own educational experience in operations research, which is about optimization. But it also presupposes that you know what you need to optimize for Exactly, right. So if you have UPS or Amazon with their trucks, right, or whatever right, they can optimize for a number of different things. It could be fuel consumption, time to delivery, maximizing how many things they get out, minimizing something else, right? So you don't have to get into, like, what are those kinds of things? But I think for our audience and important for them to know, like optimizing a process means you need to know what you need to optimize for.

Speaker 2:

So one of the things and that's the last thing I'll say about the right things there's this thing which are called customer arenas. And whenever you're sort of lost in thinking, okay, how would we further improve our offering or further improve our services or processes, whatever, you can throw in a customer arena where you invite a bunch of customers and you put them sort of in this middle arena and your own colleagues are sort of in a half circle around it and you would use it as a way to get first hand feedback about your proposition, your service, whatever, where you ask, okay, what is the thing that bothers you the most? So you can know, okay, what are my priorities in fixing it. And, of course, you can do this with a survey or you know whatever, a structured way. I also like it. Besides the quantitative stuff, get some qualitative stuff, because quantitative stuff often tells you this is something that's wrong, but the qualitative stuff will tell you why is it wrong or what are they expecting. Sometimes they don't know it, but you could get some insight. So, moving over to the process, you know Lean sort of assumes and you know everyone usually has sort of a process in place. Right, we are creating a marketing campaign. We're whatever you can think of. We are creating a product, there's a process in there, and so you have your customer request or demand, you know whatever it might be, and then the process is the answer okay, how do I build this product or how can I answer this request? It doesn't matter that you ask for customers to request or to collect the product. We will see you then, bye, bye. Now let me just figure out how I wanted to follow this up, because your question as well, mike, was about the technology. You can assume that there's already technology in place. It doesn't have to be, but it could be, and it might not be the ideal piece of technology at the time. But work with what you have and then figure out if you need to change any technology further down the line. So, in terms of process, you could go and this is where the focus of lean is is you have this thing that's called the kaizen, and the kaizen is six steps and you go through these and you constantly iterate small changes. There's this great story about and I use it constantly as an example there was a Tour de France team and they didn't do very well. They had a team, they cycled and they tried to figure out how can we improve our team in such a way that we are winning the Tour de France, constantly winning the Tour de France. So what they did is they found any small, whatever small piece of improvement they could find for their cyclists to become better. They would bring them their personalized pillows, they would give them massages, they would check whatever tiny little thing they could on a bike to further improve it. If you can think of it, they tried it in terms of just a 1% improvement of the team and I think after three years they won the Tour de France, I think five times in a row or something. That number they got there to consistent improvements. And that is the idea of the kaizen that you walk through. You're constantly checking. Okay, what are things that are going wrong, let's analyze them and if you're doing a six-sec rule, you would also use statistics here. Try to figure out what kind of solution it is. We implement the solution, we test it to see if it okay, it does actually fix the problem, and then we standardize the solution. So we are ensuring that it stays in place. So if I'm doing a process change in my marketing department, I want to ensure that everyone still keeps following the process. If I'm changing or adding a CRM and I'm expecting my sales team to use the CRM, then I for sure need to figure out some way to incentivize them to use it consistently. Otherwise, I'm building a solution with no one's using it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so you can apply this to the change itself as well as adoption of change or reinforcement of it. Okay, so I love that idea of you said kaizen, kaizen, kaizen. So this sounds like this. It's almost like a flywheel effect. Right, little change here, you get better. Another little change. The difference now is becoming greater, in sort of multiplier effect. So I like that. Still, at the same time, you need to identify what do we think the most impactful little changes are that and maybe impactful is a combination of both what does it take to do it, as well as what do you expect the outcome to come? So there's a little bit of a cost benefit.

Speaker 2:

So, within the kaizen, you would analyze, you would do, for instance, the five wise, get the root cause of the issue and you would also do something that they call a fish grade, where they try to break down the issue in all kinds of different attributing factors. So you have any. Okay, which factors should we adjust first? Because we're thinking they're the most influential? So you already have sort of like a way of okay. These are the two things from this challenge that I should cover first and see how that fixes the problem.

Speaker 1:

So I have heard of the five wise and I don't know that I've ever officially used it. Maybe I've informally done it in some ways, but it might be useful for our audience to at least get an idea. So the idea, if I understand it right you can maybe add to it is that the concept is you've got an issue or a challenge or something you're trying to do and you get with the right stakeholders or stakeholder and you ask them why? Literally five times right to let them and ask them to. It's not to be a jerk, right, it's to get them to actually explain themselves five different ways and to get to the heart of what you know. More of a root cause analysis. Yeah, okay, yeah.

Speaker 2:

And that's because sometimes people say, oh yeah, this is how we've always done it right, and those kinds of answers. You just want to kick them out of the door as soon as they say something like that. So, no, no, no, no, no, we don't. We don't want to go to that level. Go a little bit deeper. Why have we always done it this way? What is the reason for doing it in such a way that we know do we need to change something down there or not? Yeah, and sometimes after three you're done already. So it doesn't right.

Speaker 1:

But the idea is don't just accept the initial answer. One of the strategies that I've used as a consultant in the past two is it works best if you have two people conducting the interview and you really you. Actually you have to plan ahead right. You may have a series of questions and you can flip flop, going back and forth between who does it, but the key is, when the person answers your question, don't immediately ask the next question. Be quiet. People do not like to have silence.

Speaker 2:

It is such a good methodology. Sometimes just be quiet when you've asked a question, Because if you, you have no idea of it. But there should be something below this right, Just just. It's hard to do. So hard, I think it's very hard to do. I'm a chatterbox in that sense, but same, and at a certain point of time people will just like maybe they're still expecting something from me.

Speaker 1:

Well, okay, and then this and this, by the way, what I found is, I don't know that I would say more often than not, but consistently enough, the best information came from that time where I just didn't say anything and so it's, it's, it's. It's a subtle thing, but it is hard, especially if you're a vocal person, to fight that urge to say the next thing it is, it is Right. Okay, so this also, so this. We're trying to like this reinforcing loop of getting better, but could it also be one where you know you hope for improvement but you might get something that doesn't work? Is the idea also that you learn fail fast? I mean, whoever, I can't think that was a guru. I didn't model it.

Speaker 2:

To fill forward is is the lean startup methodologies, terminology, right? Okay, I've done lean startup, I've done design thinking, I've done scrum, agile. I think I've done all of the things I can like, the entire list of the methodologies, so it isn't necessarily a fail. Fast feel forward. I mean, yes, you want to be better at this. You know, performing the kaisen, you want to do this quicker and better and you'll notice that as soon as you've done the couple of times and the people are sort of enjoying, you know, becoming better. You know, because you'll notice that their KPIs, that their their, their team KPIs or the department KPIs, they'll increase. You know, you, you compete with each other for okay, so now we, we've reached an eight in our response. Let's go for a nine. Can we get a nine? Sure, let's try for that nine. You'll see that they're, they're, they'll become a culture of people who are trying to be better and that is sort of the, the goal of the kaisen, the, the lovely culture behind it which, which they've achieved at Toyota at least, where people become sort of self motivated to, you know, find issues and for, okay, let's, let's do this, let's try and and fix this one, because I think this is also something that we we are encountering as a as a blocking issue for whatever improvement we, whatever process we're trying to improve.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, well, I mean, I I'm a big, you know I think I like the idea of making small incremental changes. I've I mean, if I could create and do methodology, I'd probably incorporate things from lots of these different ones. But a principle I believe in is that you know you have to spend a amount of time understanding where you are, where you want to go. The analogy I like to use is sailing. I'm not a sailor, but, as I understand it right, the only thing you really know is you want to go from point A to point B, and what you really know right now is what are the conditions where I'm at? So how can I make steps in that right direction, learn and adjust, and sometimes that means you're not going in a straight line, and that's okay. You know, sometimes you may find that your destination was not really where you wanted to end up, or you're getting close to close. Enough is so. I'm a big believer in that. So I think I like some of these concepts and it frees people to, yeah, be comfortable with. Things are ambiguous, which is most of real life, but you don't always want have all the answers you want. So, all right, well, let's. So let's keep one of the, so we started to touch on this a little bit. So one of the challenges with any change effort, though, is communicating the change and what it means for the people in the organization. Some and it'll be different depending on what the roles are right. Does the? Does the lean methodology provide tools for helping with communication of change and managing change?

Speaker 2:

Not necessarily with communicating change. So, okay, I think it's good to realize the lean methodology. It's sort of Originated from the factory line. So there there was a different kind of discipline there. You know you listen to your boss or you've you've got a certain mindset in in Performing, but they do have a change component, so it falls under the people. But a work right with those free bubbles, purpose processing people and the change falls on the there. So one of the tools that they have is a sort of four-dimensional matrix with multiple levels with. I believe I can do, I understand and I receive support in order to want to change. So most change, you know you find resistance somewhere along the way.

Speaker 1:

This is a neuroscience coming into play here, right I?

Speaker 2:

Really enjoy Behaviorisms and talk about behaviorism and reading about behaviorisms. I've just read influence, which is a very nice, almost a research book of People's behaviors and how to influence it. Yeah, we look at LinkedIn and people posting a certain way to think, oh, this is something that they so, yeah, so, originally to lean doesn't have a lot of tools for managing a larger change, but they did add I think it added it a little later which is they call it the, the change acceleration process, which was designed with general electric and that has seven steps of change and it is something similar to Carter's Model for change, which is, I think, eight steps. That covers roughly the same. So, okay, sort of change management I would defer to one of those. You know, if you, if you know I'm going to pull like a larger change operation here. You know it's best to sort of pull from those, those methodologies, at least to get the Organization department, you know, moving. You need to get a couple of people in the leadership team to sort of Understand where lean is coming from and see, oh yeah, this is something that we are going to try, we are going to do with an organization, we are communicating about it. This is our way of Reducing costs while at the same time, you know, improving our Product quality or our processes, because we know, or we feel, we have an idea that our operational cost is too high or that we are made to any Errors in our product release or product production, and this is the way we're going to move forward on trying to fix it. Yeah, it sounds interesting.

Speaker 1:

It's what I think this all requires, though, is is a strong vision, a vision for a future state that's better in some way right, and then then you can tie back. Any change, large or small, to this is a part of getting to achieving that vision, so it's record. So we've covered a lot of ground, and I wish we had more time. We don't. Is there anything we haven't covered here yet that you would want to make sure, like I want to make sure the listeners Know about this?

Speaker 2:

one thing, not really about this this one thing I mean it is. I think it's a very nice methodology to at least have sort of like a basic understanding of, so that you can try and apply to your organization. Yeah, it's actually quite fun to do it. We really enjoy doing it Right, even with a test run. We on our training day with building Legos basically and trying to figure out that how do we get the, we had to make little flowers as quickly as possible in the best way of processing. And while we were so focused on the process, know when once we had like a test around, we noticed we didn't actually ask the client what they wanted and how they wanted it to be delivered and we could Change our entire process based on that. Oh, damn it. So those things are really, really fun to do. If anyone wants to try the certification, I really recommend it. Okay, it was one of my most fun certifications and trainings to do in terms of hey, I can apply this to so many things. Sure, I love that. Yeah, okay.

Speaker 1:

Well, we'll try to make sure that we provide resources. Links to some of the resources you should be able to. I'll post on it constantly. I really love this topic.

Speaker 2:

So I'll be talking about it. Fun, all right. So we know at least one way in which people can, can can learn more about this.

Speaker 1:

If people want to connect with you or learn more about you or what you're doing or the lead methodology, what's the best way for them to do that? Yeah, they can find me a LinkedIn. You know, DM me.

Speaker 2:

Whenever you're interested. You know I love to talk about this. I'd love to Talk with people, if they, if they're okay, I want to try this my organization Can you help me? Where do I get started? And, and you know, we can export together. I'm also exploring it and my own organization the clients are working with now In the specific area of marketing and revenue operations. Fantastic Well, Rutger, thank you again and thanks especially for staying up late for us.

Speaker 1:

Appreciate that I'm sure you guys are going to be very happy. Rutger, thank you again, and thanks especially for staying up late, for us Appreciate that. I'm sure you've got family commitments as well, so I know that's.

Speaker 2:

The little one's just gone down to bed, so I'm a free man now.

Speaker 1:

All right, all right. Well, I appreciate it. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy that time, and we really thank you, thanks to our listeners, for continuing to support us. We look forward to bringing you more interesting topics like this until next time. Bye everyone, bye everyone.

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