Posts Tagged ‘Kaizen’

PostHeaderIcon Three Agenda Items for a Lessons Learned Review

Every project should be closed with a proper review of lessons learned. I’m always amazed at the tremendous amount of feedback, ideas and value that comes out of a well run project closeout review session. Regrouping the team for this one final meeting is one of the most important events in the life of the project.

The agenda for this meeting – best run as a facilitated workshop – should comprise these three items:

1 – What Worked?
2 – What did Not Work?
3 – What must we Do Differently Next Time?

Structure for Best Results

Some structure around each of these will maximize the quality of the output. For example, solicit feedback with respect to specific areas, such as:

  • Categories – Planning, Resourcing, Risk Management, Requirements, Technology
  • Enablers – Commitment, Competence, Communications (see The Fifth Law)
  • Phases – Solution Design, Development, Testing, Deployment.

This provides proper focus and balance for identifying lessons learned. Also, use of the Nominal Group Technique in the workshop ensures the optimal mix of individual contributions and team discussion.

Lastly, just capturing lessons learned is only half the job. In the spirit of ‘kaizen‘ or continuous improvement, they each need to be transformed into action items for implementation, in order to guarantee future projects will use them.