The 2-2-2-2©-Customer-Kaizen Concept
What is it? - Seriousness towards any commitment, resolution
of a Customer Quality Complaint (CQC) in particular, should be evident through delivery of quality and quantity within a predetermined
Why? - This is expected to result in customer satisfaction through quicker response to the customer,
both external as well as internal.
Brief History - Many organizations are graduating towards use of Deming wheel (conventionally known as the PDCA
cycle) to drive continual improvement. During my Kaizen consulting assignments over the past few years, I noticed that in
general there is a lack of firm time dimension to making a commitment, be it for improvement cycle or for making a delivery.
One comes across communications such as ‘I will do it’ leaving the ‘by when’ part open ended. Many
a time the ‘by when’ part is, by design, left unanswered by the supplier probably in order to accommodate
‘just-in-case’ kind of failures at his end. Many a time, the customer herself hesitates in asking ‘by when’
(in order to avoid tackling embarrassing replies such as ‘very soon (I will do it)’).
Why does this happen? Apart from above reasons, sometimes this could be a strategy to remain non-committal
to the result-pushy-boss. Result-pushy-boss is the one who just pushes results without enabling the corresponding process.
Sometimes it could be because of human inertia to be committal. In the later case, such non-committal situations are difficult
to tackle unless there is an intrinsic drive to keep challenging status-quo/s.
How does one tackle this? Team members do not worry if they are confident of their boss’s personal participation
in the process, if needs be, rather than just ‘pushing’ urgency and results. Good team-leader-(‘bosses’)
allay ‘fear of failure’ among their team members while the team works through the committed time-line.
While creating Kaizen culture in Fleetguard Filters
Limited, Pune, I introduced the concept of 2-2-2-2(c) culture. It is necessarily a top management led initiative. It should be enabled such that it results into a collective commitment of people to work through the delivery process
itself, which achieves a consensus time line as a bye-product. Key is in enabling the delivery process* itself assertively
(and aggressively if needs be) rather than just pushing timeline/s so that the 'sense of urgency' evolves across the company.
Making a beginning of implementing this idea with CQC gives a head start to this 'top management led transformation' because
buying in to the customer priority was easier to convince everyone about.
How? - The 2-2-2-2© concept may be understood through the EESTEE™ 2-2-2-2© Factor x Response
Matrix. It gives 2-2-2-2© time dimension to the conventional 7-Step PDCA method of problem solving. The 7-Step PDCA methodology
with 2-2-2-2© timeline is not only applicable for Problem solving (such as CQC), but also for processes such as Decision making,
Managing Improvement projects, Managing 'Voice of customer' that a visiting marketeer is expected to prompt/capture/record
proactively during his normal customer visit, etc.
In the context of a CQC, the 2-2-2-2© might mean
2-Minutes, 2-Hours, 2-Days, 2-Weeks time bound response to the customer for a given level of performance a typical company
might be striving for. The time bound response is necessarily supposed to be at the level of eliminating root cause/s (conventionally
known as CAPA) rather than stopping at the first aid (containment) level action.
In the context of other business situations,
the timeline may be different. For instance, in the context of an emergency/crisis situation, it could mean 2-Seconds, 2-Minutes,
2-Hours, 2-Days. In the context of an improvement project, it could mean 2-Hours, 2-Days, 2-Weeks, 2-Months. It could mean
2-Days, 2-Weeks, 2-Months, 2-Quarters for a development project. It could mean 2-Weeks, 2-Months, 2-Quarters, 2-Years for
a change management program, and so on.
The 2-2-2-2(c) timeline itself can evolve based
on future need in terms of the level of performance aimed at. For instance, in the context of a CQC, timeline might evolve
to be 1-1-1-1(c) implying 1-Minute, 1-Hour, 1-Day, 1-Week for a given level of performance. Or 2-Seconds, 2-Minutes, 2-Hours,
2-Days for a higher level of performance. Or it could mean 2-Hours, 2-Days, 2-Weeks, 2-Months in case of a business situation
that is of complicated nature needing more time to show effective results. For instance, a typical 'Voice of Customer' may
demand more time to do in-depth analysis & verify effectiveness. The intention of such timelines should be to stretch
the business performance realistically such that continual improvement attitude is nurtured.
The 2-2-2-2© timeline is symbolic in the sense
that once the targeted quality, quantity and the timeline is set by consensus, at least in 80% cases it should
be achieved if not possible to better it. In remaining 20% cases the timeline may be revisable to realistic one. The top management
should enable driving of the 2-2-2-2© timeline as a passion that each employee would strive for. The leaders in
the drivers' seat should be conscious enough not to allow it to be a mere slogan just because the term itself might be
impressionable and easy to remember. In effect, this is a concept with an intent that needs to be fulfilled with serious commitment.
FAAAI (AOTS Japan) Expert Faculty
(on Industrial and Japanese Management), Business Coach, Management Author.
Quality Management Systems, e-mail: <worldOFkaizen@gmail.com>, <worldOFkaizen@mtnl.net.in>
<www.worldOFkaizen.com> Please visit our website to know
more ABOUT our COURSES and PUBLICATIONS
* Read 1-1-1-1(c) in chapter 6.0 of the book 'Visual Management through Five-S' authored by Shyam Talawadekar. The
reader may be able to pick up a few guidelines there that help enabling the delivery processes.