Why did you decide to participate in the Value Improvement Program?
I have been at UCSF for less than two years. They had a similar program at my previous job at Amazon. I applied there, but I never got selected. When I learned about this program I decided to give it a try.
What did you learn?
I knew nothing about Lean. I had never even heard of it. Some people on my team were familiar and our coach was also helpful. It’s an interesting way to look at systems and improvement. One challenge we had was getting to the root problem. You have to think about problems differently. I had to do a bit of research, getting background facts and statistics for my project. We finally boiled it down to the real problem of the system.
What surprised you the most?
The big surprise is just getting selected! There has been a lot of support at all levels to get it done. I had no idea it took so much to get things done and how hard it can be to change a small thing. Also, I learned that everything is connected. My project is related to other improvement projects, like trying to improve our customer service time. The solution we created for this can help us with other projects too.