Cover image for Quick hits : 10 key surgical strike actions to improve business process performance
Quick hits : 10 key surgical strike actions to improve business process performance
Cross, Kelvin F., 1953-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : American Management Association, [2004]

Physical Description:
ix, 274 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


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HD58.87 .C76 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Improving business processes, whatever or wherever they are in the enterprise, is an acknowledged way of improving the bottom line. Whether it's re-engineering, Six Sigma, TQM, or any number of other techniques, the problem is that it's usually such a huge undertaking that it's more work than it's worth. Kelvin F. Cross proposes that results can be achieved much more easily by going in and performing ""surgical strikes"" on specific areas that need improvement, without turning the entire thing into a ""science project."" And now his method is available for anyone seeking to streamline process structures. Using case studies from companies including AT&T, GE, and Weight Watchers International to illustrate the remarkable results that can be achieved, Quick Hits sums up the ten key areas that are perfect targets for surgical strikes, demonstrating exactly how to handle each type of problem. By showing how to determine which approach to use for any given situation, the book gives readers an arsenal of tactical and judicious methods designed to be low risk, low cost, and very effective." "

Author Notes

Kelvin F. Cross is a founding partner of Corporate Renaissance, Inc.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Chapter 1. Quick Hits Through Surgical Strikesp. 1
What's New About Surgical Strikes for Business Performance Improvement?p. 2
The Illumination of Surgical Strikesp. 5
Don't Obliterate, Renovatep. 7
The Return of Intelligencep. 8
The Surgical Strikes Approach Cuts to the Chasep. 8
Surgical Strikes Come Naturally If Given a Chancep. 9
Who Gets These Great Results?p. 11
The Ten Surgical Strikes--The Way the Results Are Achievedp. 13
The Ten Surgical Strikes--The Way to Resultsp. 17
Chapter 2. Where to Strikep. 19
So Where to Begin?p. 19
Define the Corep. 20
The Customer Defines Valuep. 20
The Customer Segmentsp. 22
When a Strike Misses the Markp. 23
A Question of Perspectivep. 25
A Core Process Omissionp. 28
Characteristics and Virtues of Core Process Thinkingp. 29
Customers + Processes = Strike Zones of Opportunityp. 32
Chapter 3. How to Strikep. 35
A Plumbing Problemp. 35
Map Out the Detailsp. 36
The Game Plan--What It Takesp. 40
Discoveryp. 41
Inspirep. 44
Designp. 47
Realizep. 47
Chapter 4. Strike 1: Unclog the Workplacep. 51
Busy but Not Productivep. 52
So How Did We Get Here?p. 53
A Magnificent Navy on Landp. 58
That Was Then, and This Is Nowp. 59
Routine Maintenance ...p. 61
... Or Radical Cleanupp. 62
When All Clogged Up ...p. 63
... Focus the Hitp. 63
Triangulate and Strikep. 66
Strike 1 The Tip of the Icebergp. 67
Strike 1 Unclog the Workplacep. 67
Chapter 5. Strike 2: Eliminate Workp. 69
Eliminate Bad Customersp. 72
Eliminate Bad Productsp. 75
Eliminate Failures and Failure-Related Recoveryp. 76
Eliminate Non-Value-Added Nonsense Workp. 80
Strike 2 Just Say Nop. 85
Strike 2 Eliminate Workp. 85
Chapter 6. Strike 3: Streamline the Workflowp. 87
Profile the Workload Within the Processp. 89
Quantify the Process Itselfp. 92
Initial Ideasp. 93
Prioritize Opportunity Areasp. 95
Generate Ideas and Assess Impactsp. 98
Overall Impactp. 101
Cut Cycle Timep. 103
Cut Value-Added Time (Not Steps)p. 109
Strike 3 On the Straight and Narrowp. 111
Strike 3 Streamline the Workflowp. 112
Chapter 7. Strike 4: Reclaim Lost Time--Utilize Capacity and Expand Capabilityp. 113
Reclaim Lost Time by Eliminating the Wait for Workp. 115
Unavailable Time: Use it or Lose It--Time Is Moneyp. 122
Customer Chaos Is No Excuse for Poor Utilizationp. 126
Expand Capabilityp. 130
Expand Capabilities and Reap the Rewardsp. 137
Strike 4 Reclaim Lost Timep. 138
Chapter 8. Strike 5: Redistribute the Workp. 139
Put Your Customers to Workp. 140
Technology-Enabled Self-Servicep. 147
Hire Some Helpp. 149
Fire the Intermediariesp. 157
Strike 5 Redistribute the Workp. 160
Chapter 9. Strike 6: Manage Fluctuations in Work Volumep. 163
Clip the Peaks and Fill the Valleysp. 164
Twin Peaksp. 165
Why Exacerbate Peak Loads?p. 168
The Appearance of Flexibility, the Reality of Efficiencyp. 172
Strike 6 Manage Fluctuations in Work Volumep. 173
Chapter 10. Strike 7: Focus the Flowsp. 175
Slow-Track Versus Fast-Track Workp. 176
Geographic Orientationp. 182
Segment Focusp. 184
Focus the Flows on Performance to the Customerp. 188
Strike 7 Focus the Flowsp. 189
Chapter 11. Strike 8: Link and Learn--Unclog the Flows of Knowledgep. 191
Close the Feedback Loops from Within a Core Processp. 194
Move Information and Knowledge Among Core Processesp. 195
How to Link and Learnp. 199
Strike 8 Unclog the Flows of Knowledgep. 210
Chapter 12. Strike 9: Show the Resultsp. 211
Establish Down-to-Earth Balanced Measures of Performancep. 212
Scorecard in Actionp. 213
The Right Measure and Real Valuep. 214
Make Clear Priorities Visiblep. 217
Dress Up the Workersp. 218
Dress Up the Workp. 219
Build Camaraderie and Teamworkp. 219
Strike 9 Show the Resultsp. 221
Chapter 13. Strike 10: Implement Customercentric Teamsp. 223
Group Think--How Did I Get Here?p. 225
Broken Silosp. 227
Fast Team--Fast Resultsp. 230
Multi-Teams and the Supporting Environmentp. 231
Common Themesp. 236
Culture Clash?p. 239
Strike 10 Implement Customercentric Teamsp. 240
Chapter 14. Conduct the Strike(s)p. 241
Obtain the Gains, Sustain the Gainsp. 242
Communicate, Communicate, Communicatep. 242
Pilot the Strikep. 249
Strike Againp. 251
Appendix The Ten Surgical Strikesp. 253
Notesp. 261
Indexp. 267
About the Authorp. 275