Has anyone else here associated Kaizen somehow with the work of an
IxDer? I know Kaizen is intended as a management approach, but the
whole notion of "continuous improvement" has become a recent obsession
of mine (I've been learning about/contemplating it for a couple of
months now) and I'm finding plenty of ways to apply it, at least
metaphorically, to IxD work.
For example, my new Interface Designer/Usability Specialist role at Go
Daddy (which I started last week) involves working with the web team
to improve the site. The web team never had to deal with an IxD or
Usability nut before me, so it's a big step for them and I'm sure
they're nervous about it (I haven't met them yet - that happens soon).
So I was talking about it with my boss the other day and I suggested
the best way to go would be to make small, incremental improvements
that cause as little tension and disruption as possible (he agrees,
which is great). This matches the very definition of Kaizen quite
well, but instead of focusing on processes and management, I'm
focusing on the site design. (Is it still Kaizen in this case, or
Taking Kaizen more literallly, I plan to make constant improvements to
the way I do things, and the way the rest of the soon-to-be-created
team does things. It's a great way to go, and likely the BEST way to
go when there is no process to start with. Inventing the process is
part of my job, so improving it will be a constant necessity.
Anyway, these are just some things that have crossed my mind lately,
and I'm wondering what you guys think? Has Kaizen made its way into
your work, and if so, how?