Is it a Green Belt project, or an implementation project?
We are regularly asked by potential customers for our opinion on what makes an ideal Green Belt project, in preparation for them working on their improvement projects, and developing their own capability through our Green Belt programme.
In many cases, customers are confused because they have been given a project to ‘do’ and they are not sure if it qualifies as a Green Belt project; they often do not know the difference between a Green Belt project and an implementation project, and how would they? If they work in an environment where they are traditionally given projects to ‘manage’, i.e. implement, then the temptation is to assume their Improvement project is the same.
A project that is focused on working on a problem where the solution is not known, identifying the root causes of the problem, and then developing and testing solutions to address them before implementation, is alien to them.
When clients have this same dilemma, I use the PMI Improvement Cycle to illustrate the thinking and decision-making process they need to go through. Looking at the Improvement Cycle, you need to decide if the project you are thinking about is suitable for an improvement project.