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Rapid Experiments

by John Gross

Sometimes we come up with ideas that will catapult our business forward if successful but can cause damage if they fail. In this situation, most people only see two options: drop the idea or take the risk of implementation. However, a third option exist: Conduct a rapid experiment.

My lean sensei (coach) taught us that rapid experiments allow us to fail fast, fail small, and learn. Rapid experiments allowed us to successfully implement many new changes both in the plant and in the office.

To set up a rapid experiment in your business, follow these steps:

- First, select the target area for the experiment--defining a small but reasonable subset of the business or process.

- Define the experiment (i.e., what we are changing).

- Determine how long to run the experiment.

- Pre-determine the success criteria and supporting data needed to make a decision.

- Set up the experiment and train the participants.

- Finally, conduct the experiment.

After the experiment, compare actual results to the success criteria to determine success or failure. Regardless of the results, review lessons learned to determine how to improve a failed experiment or make a successful experiment even better. If necessary, rerun the rapid experiment to confirm proposed improvements.

Using the data from the experiment, make a decision on whether or not to implement the change. If you decide not to implement a new idea, ask yourself if there were pieces of the experiment that should be applied in the current business.

Rapid experiments allow us to test our great ideas without harming the business.

John Gross is an EOS Implementer who helps businesses achieve Vision, Traction, and Healthy. You can contact John at John@ DrivingChangeInc.com or call 636.667.0579.

Submitted 1 years 61 days ago
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