Posts By Samuel F Doucette

Workarounds as Evidence of Broken Processes

I work for a culture (the Air Force) that prides itself on innovation and a mission-first approach. However, in a long-term work project involving process mapping and process design for an internal customer, I’ve also noticed a culture of workarounds driven by several factors: 1) obsolete yet required forms; 2) lack of concrete guidance fromRead… Read more »

My Tribute to the Washington Navy Yard Victims: My Colleagues

I read this very touching tribute to the Washington Navy Yard victims this morning. While I am an Air Force civilian in at a base in suburban Boston, we are all part of the same national security team. I feel the loss as if they were on my base. Their lives of quiet persevering dedicationRead… Read more »

Waste-Free Capitalism — Why Not Waste-Free Government, too?

I just read this excellent article by Lean thinker Michael Balle called “Waste-Free Capitalism.” Most Americans accept that capitalism is the best economic model for allocating scarce resources and maximizing wealth. Most Americans also know that it isn’t perfect. Waste — until recently — has been seen as a “cost of doing business” or usingRead… Read more »

What We Can Learn about Process Improvement from Two Old White Guys

Last weekend, I was thinking about my undergraduate days when I took a lot of philosophy courses at a small Catholic liberal arts college. I remember the classical Greek philosophers Plato and Aristotle approaching reality from two different yet complementary angles. At the risk of overgeneralizing, Plato believed that reality existed in ideas from whichRead… Read more »

The OODA Loop and Organizational Learning

This article Fast Transients is near and dear to me as an Air Force employee. Anyone who runs even minimally in Air Force circles knows that fighter pilots (currently) run the Air Force. So, a good rule of thumb when briefing them is to phrase non-military concepts in terms they can understand. One such exampleRead… Read more »