8 Deadly Wastes Affecting Your Meetings – DOWNTIME
Published Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Robert Walters - Vice President - Yellow Belt - Six Sigma for Meetings
Welcome to the first edition of our new Lean Six Sigma for Meeting Professionals Newsletter. The purpose of the newsletter is to keep you informed of new educational materials available, trends involving Lean Six Sigma and the meetings industry, and to let you know of new dates and locations that have been added for the Lean Six Sigma for Meeting Professionals (LSSMP) Green Belt course.
There are 8 deadly wastes that affect every aspect of your meetings and in the Lean Six Sigma world they are referred to as D-O-W-N-T-I-M-E. This acronym stands for:
D – DEFECTS
O – OVERPRODUCTION
W – WAITING
N – NOT-UTILIZING TALENT
T – TRANSPORTATION
I – INVENTORY EXCESS
M – MOTION WASTE
E – EXCESS PROCESSING
When you apply this to the meetings industry it is easy to identify wastes in every category. Basically, anything that does not increase value to your customer or stakeholder must be considered waste and every effort should be made to identify these and eliminate them.
In this issue we will focus on the first 4 wastes – D-O-W-N – and identify a couple of areas to investigate.
D – Defects
While most people associate defects with a manufacturing process, consider that any changes to your processes that require re-visiting specifications, changes that occur as a result of contract negotiations and even after the contract is signed are wastes of valuable time.
Let’s take one area – changes to the specs of an RFP after it is sent through your sourcing process. Are these adding more information that you could have included in the initial RFP, are they changes by the stakeholder in terms of what they want for meeting space? Changes in location, budgets, etc.? In other words – could you have asked more questions before sending the RFP and could you have provided a more complete picture of what your requirements were.
Bear in mind, these changes (defects) impact you, your staff, the stakeholders and the suppliers.
O – Overproduction
Have you ever held a meal function where many of the seats were empty? Set up minimums for beverages only to watch most of it get wheeled out of the room? These are costly examples of overproduction. Just because a meal function is included in your agenda doesn’t mean everyone will attend, many people opt to use that time for one-on-one meetings, catching up on email or making calls. What would happen if you asked a simple question either during the registration process or in your confirmation – “Will you be attending the breakfast (lunch or dinner) on Wednesday?”
Then make your guarantees based on the positive responses. With more venues focusing on F&B margins – this could be a major savings.
W – Waiting
What delays do you encounter in your meeting process? Have you ever missed a deadline in getting a contract reviewed by legal or signed by a stakeholder that is out of the office? Have you had long lines at registration because you didn’t look at trends of when your attendees typically check in and you are under-staffed?
What about saving money by shipping materials ground instead of expedited only to have them arrive late – possibly incurring emergency printing costs or extra work for staff to distribute.
N – Not Utilizing Talent
We all have aspects of our education, work experience or skills that lend us to excel at certain tasks. Do you know what your staff excels or enjoys doing? Have you assigned them to the proper tasks so things run smoothly? Putting a deadline oriented person in charge of distributing items scheduled by someone who has a more laid-back attitude might result in both underperforming.
Job titles/descriptions often button-hole people in roles where they don’t excel – look at your staff from a skill perspective and assign tasks accordingly.
Coming Next Issue
Let’s explore the remaining 4 deadly sins of waste –
T – Transportation
I – Excess Inventory
M – Motion Waste
E – Excess Processing
LSSMP White Belt Webinar – November 8, 2017
Earn 1 CE Credit Hour and the LSSMP White Belt Certification by attending a 1 hour webinar on Wednesday, November 8, 2017 at 2:00 PM EST/1:00 PM CST/11:00 AM PST.
Rob Wilson, founder of Six Sigma Meetings and a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt will present the core principles of Lean Six Sigma for meetings and lay the groundwork for future webinars and the LSSMP Green Belt course.