Kaizen is a philosophy for continuous incremental improvement. In Japanese Kaizen is derived from the words kai meaning change and zen meaning become good. The understanding of this philosophy is important to this team and to project management.
I believe that this project was designed with this philosophy in mind. The idea behind the project is just do a piece of the puzzle as you ago. Continuously plug away at the project. Piece by piece the pieces will fall into place the work will get done. The idea behind this is very efficient and allows for project team members to work out solutions to inefficiencies early on. However, when the continuous work stops, the inefficiencies begin to creep up and control is lost on the project. The project can be brought back under control, but usually at the expense or resource of time, quality, and cost.
The concern I have for the team on this project and I have seen on other projects I have worked on is the desire to eat all the float in the beginning, push everything into urgent and important matter forcing the entire project to run on crisis management mode.
By working using kaizen, not only would we bring about good change, but we would drive down costs, increase quality, and work more efficiently. The real question is, as a team, why can’t we do this? As project management professionals this is a bandwagon we need to jump on to ensure that we do deliver the projects the way we are supposed to, with quality, on or ahead of schedule, and on or under budget.
(2007). Small Change: Read a Few More Pages. Retrieved from Web Site: http://www.projectkaizen.com/small-change/small-change-read-a-few-more-pages.html#more-20
(2011). Kaizen Philosophy and Kaizen Method. Retrieved from Web Site: http://www.valuebasedmanagement.net/methods_kaizen.html