When does 1+1=3

When you continually leverage and magnify the efforts of empowered teams working together toward the same quality goals. This is constancy of purpose, Deming's management principle #1.

In 2009, the empowered work teams of the Henry Ford Hospital Laboratories racked up a grand total of 536 process improvements! Wow!


By living a Deming-inspired LEAN management culture where leaders in each division empower employees to track important metrics of their work and based on measurement, allow them to design and redesign their own standard work according to accepted work rules.

In this fashion we have continually increased quality by creating a learning organization with ownership for problem resolution at the level of the worker. This is 'kaizen', continually and incrementally raising the quality bar.

As we enter our 5th year of LEAN management in the newly integrated Pathology and Laboratory Medicine service line, we are better prepared because of our culture and quality focus to accomplish the known key strategies for 2010 listed below and meet any unforeseeable challenges.

Pathology & Laboratory Medicine: 2010 Key Strategies

New Order - Integration, management, quality, finance, satisfaction

  • Integration
  • Horizontal management across 6 hospitals
  • Quality
  • Standardization
  • Cost
  • Capital avoidance
  • Customer focus & service
  • Employee acceptance, engagement
  • Customer & employee satisfaction

Lean Management

  • Deming management principles, leadership behaviors to drive results
  • Daily metrics, variation reported to leaders & employees
  • Employee empowerment for improvements


  • Growth under one brand and oversight
  • Consolidate and migrate ordering/reporting to Atlas Information System
  • 'Lab Update' for Outreach communications, test utilization & appropriateness

Quality Management System-Wide Plan-ISO 15189

  • Electronic document control, ISO format
  • Paperless inspections
  • System-wide Quality Management representatives
  • CAP inspection teams, leveraging the team