Once you decide that you want to get going with a QI project, it can be easy to dive into the work and start doing lots of ‘stuff’.  Awash with change ideas we are raring to go and starting doing things that will solve our problem.  Or will they?  Do we know enough about our problem and the system we are working in to dive straight into our project?

Improvement projects almost always need to be led and carried out by staff who are also carrying full workloads, so you don’t have any time or energy to waste by focusing on red herrings or simply staying in your comfort zone.  QI methodology is based on understanding the systems and processes that we work in and making changes to improve these systems and processes.  The nature of our work can mean that we are very familiar with parts of a system, but not always the wider system and how it links together.  We might think we know exactly where our problem lies, but often there are other factors at play that we are less familiar with.  Because of this, it is always recommended that teams starting out with an idea for improvement take some time to explore and define their problem.  Front loading this work can save you time, energy and frustration in the longer run. 

There are more resource files on the Improvement Academy web pages under ‘Resources’ including one on Fishbone Diagrams, Forcefield Analysis and The 5 Whys.  These can help you to explore your problem.  You might also benefit from talking to a QI Improvement Coach, who can also help you with using these tools.  You can find details of how to contact a coach on the IA webpages.

Contact Information

For support or further information on any aspect of improvement work in CNWL, please contact the QI Team in the Improvement Academy at: