Lean Transformations Group

Talking About Lean: How Leaders Support Improvement With Words and Actions

Originally published at The Lean Post

The following collection of Lean Post articles from David Verble examines how the way managers and leaders talk to employees (and to each other) can contribute, or be a barrier to, creating and sustaining a culture of engagement and continuous improvement.

This series clarifies healthy ways that managers can mindfully observe and improve how they lead employees. David kicks it off by identifying ways that managers can develop automatic habits that convert hidden requests or directions to employees into interactions that generate more productive engagement. He then shares insights from discoveries in neuroscience that capture tangible ways to ask open questions which prompt a healthy action on the part of the person receiving that prompt.

David then elaborates on simple ways that leaders can develop better awareness of how their words and actions “land” with others. Next he taps into his experience of observing Fujio Cho at work to illustrate what he learned about what he calls “Respectful Listening” look like. And in the last section, he builds on this by sharing what he has learned personally about the power of prompting reflection—as opposed to telling or directing others as a way of coaching for development.

Download the PDF at The Lean Enterprise Institute.

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