Here are the basic steps used by "Lean" laboratories when solving a problem.
1. Clarify the problem.
2. Set the target - i.e. what does success look like.
3. Determine the problem's Point of Cause - not always where it became apparent!
4. Go and observe the process at the Point of Cause to determine the Direct Cause - Fishbone Diagrams
can be useful here.
5. Implement a temporary solution to fix the Direct Cause.
6. Identify the underlying Root Cause - The 5 Whys are a good tool to do this (Note a person is never the
7. Determine and implement a solution to the Root Cause.
8. Verify that the solution to the Root Cause is working and that you have achieved your target.
9. Remove the temporary solution to the Direct Cause and verify that the Direct Cause does not
reappear - If it does you did not find the right Root Cause!
10. Widely publish the findings and identify other areas of the business that can benefit from your