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ProTip: A Culture of Continuous Improvement

Continuous improvement, or CI in shorthand, is a management approach that gained currency in the 1980s and 1990s. With a CI culture, nobody ever thinks, "OK, there's more to do, but I'll wait a few months and assemble a good, long, meaty to-do list, then I'll really go for it, I'll make a sprint for the tape." A CI culture says do even a little bit today, don't wait for a major event, a big process - if you do, there's a risk it won't happen, it could become too monumental and hard to handle.

- Andrew Wileman, Driving Down Cost

The concept of making continuous improvements is a powerful one. In these tips, we talk a lot about avoiding procrastination because it is such an ingrained part of all of us as humans. CI dovetails completely with avoiding procrastination: as Andrew Wileman says, we often decide to wait to make changes until something else happens. But so often, the "something else" never comes. We never have the extra time/cash/manpower we dream of. Waiting for a more optimal time is also frequently just a veiled procrastination attempt. To cut through this, build your culture (both in yourself and in your company) of CI: what can you be doing now, even if it's small, to push ahead? How can you break your goals down into easy-to-accomplish chunks that you can spread out and accomplish more readily?

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