The Improvement Guide: A Practical Approach to Enhancing Organizational Performance / Edition 2

Hardcover (Print)
Rent from
(Save 74%)
Est. Return Date: 07/21/2015
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $36.00
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 44%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (17) from $36.00   
  • New (12) from $36.00   
  • Used (5) from $41.80   


The Improvement Guide

In today's tumultuous global marketplace, making effective changes in how organizations are run has become more important than ever. Performance improvement continues to be a key focus for leaders in business, healthcare, education, and government concerned with long-term success and sustainability. Executives, managers, and workers need practical methods and techniques that produce lasting results.

This second edition of the best-selling book, The Improvement Guide, offers an integrated approach to learning and improvement, one that is designed to deliver quick and substantial results. Using straightforward stories to illustrate core ideas, the expert authors introduce a flexible model for improving quality and productivity in diverse settings. They draw from research conducted in a variety of areas—manufacturing, healthcare, government, and schools—to present a practical tool kit of ideas, examples, and applications.

Since the book was first published more than a decade ago, the authors have expanded the use of their Model for Improvement—through work on improvement efforts at multinational companies as well as in different industries such as healthcare and public agencies. This thoroughly revised and updated edition includes new information that shows how to accelerate improvement by spreading changes across multiple sites—for example, spreading improvements in cardiac care across multiple hospitals; spreading set-up efficiencies across multiple manufacturing sites; or spreading approaches to reducing homelessness across multiple cities. In addition, the book contains an explanation of how other approaches such as Six Sigma and Lean production are related to the Model for Improvement framework.

Designed to be highly approachable, the book's Resource Guide to Change Concepts is updated so that even beginners can utilize the tested techniques of some of the world's most experienced practitioners. Like the first, this second edition offers a practical tool kit filled with dynamic ideas, illustrative examples, and useful applications.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470192412
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/20/2009
  • Series: Wiley Desktop Editions Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 512
  • Sales rank: 186,117
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Gerald J. Langley is a statistician, author, and consultant, and co-founder of Associates in Process Improvement (API), a consulting firm that specializes in the improvement of quality and productivity.

Ronald D. Moen is a statistician, consultant, and teacher to industry, government, and education. He is co-founder of API.

Kevin M. Nolan is a statistician, author, and consultant at API, where he focuses on developing methods and assisting organizations to accelerate their rate of improvement in quality and productivity.

Dr. Thomas W. Nolan is a statistician, author, and consultant, and—co-founder of API.

Clifford L. Norman is a consultant with API whose work has emphasized the psychology of change.

Lloyd P. Provost is a statistician who advises to organizations as an API associate.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents




The Authors.

Introduction: The Improvement Guide, Second Edition.


Chapter One: Changes That Result in Improvement.

Principles of Improvement.

The Model for Improvement.

Key Points from Chapter One.

Chapter Two: Skills to Support Improvement.

Supporting Change with Data.

Developing a Change.

Testing a Change.

Implementing a Change.

Spreading Improvements.

The Human Side of Change.

Key Points from Chapter Two.

Chapter Three: Improvement Case Studies.

Case Study 1: Improving the Morning Meeting.

Case Study 2: Improving Service in a Dental Offi ce.

Case Study 3: Improving Methods for Teaching Biology.

Case Study 4: Contamination in Shipping Drums.

Case Study 5: Reducing Energy Use in School.

Key Points from Chapter Three.


Chapter Four: The Science of Improvement.

Profound Knowledge.

Milestones in the Development of Profound Knowledge.

Key Points from Chapter Four.

Chapter Five: Using the Model for Improvement.

What Are We Trying to Accomplish?

How Will We Know That a Change Is an Improvement?

What Changes Can We Make That Will Result in Improvement?

The Plan-Do-Study-Act Cycle.

Using the Cycle to Build Knowledge.

Key Points from Chapter Five.

Chapter Six: Developing a Change.

Some Typical Problems in Developing Changes.

Reactive Versus Fundamental Change.

Theory for Change.

Methods for Developing Fundamental Change.

Key Points from Chapter Six.

Chapter Seven: Testing a Change.

Applying the Science of Improvement to Testing.

Principles for Testing a Change.

Designs for Testing a Change.

Strategies for Testing.

Key Points from Chapter Seven.

Chapter Eight: Implementing a Change.

Testing a Change.

Implementing a Change.

Implementation as a Series of Cycles.

Implementing Changes to Achieve and Maintain Improvement.

The Social Aspects of Implementing a Change.

Key Points from Chapter Eight.

Chapter Nine: Spreading Improvements.

A Framework for Spread.

Phase for Organizational Readiness for Spread.

Phase for Developing an Initial Spread Plan.

Phase for Executing and Refi ning the Spread Plan.

Key Points from Chapter Nine.

Chapter Ten: Integrating Methods for the Improvement of Value.

Eliminating Quality Problems.

Reducing Costs While Maintaining or Improving Quality.

Expanding the Expectations of Customers to Increase Demand.

Developing an Environment Conducive to the Improvement of Value.

Key Points from Chapter Ten.

Chapter Eleven: Improving Large or Complex Systems.

Project Setup and Management.

Understanding the System and Developing High-Impact Changes.

Testing and Learning Systems.

Key Points from Chapter Eleven.

Chapter Twelve: Case Studies of Improvement Efforts.

Case Study 1: Reducing the Occurrence of No-Fault-Found Components.

Case Study 2: Improving the Drill Process.

Case Study 3: Reducing Infection and Mortality Rates in a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit.

Case Study 4: Improving Safety at a Manufacturing Plant.

Case Study 5: Improving the Credentialing Process at CareOregon.

Case Study 6: Improving Sales at a Specialty Chemical Company.

Key Points from Chapter Twelve.


Chapter Thirteen: Making the Improvement of Value a Business Strategy.

Building the System of Improvement.

Key Points from Chapter Thirteen.

Chapter Fourteen: Developing Improvement Capability.

Developing Improvement Capability in the Workforce.

Organization to Support the Focus on Improvement.

Development of Other Capabilities.

Key Points from Chapter Fourteen.

Sample Agendas for Getting Started, Sponsors, and Improvement Advisors.

Development of Internal Improvement Advisors: Topical Agenda.


Appendix A: A Resource Guide to Change Concepts.

How to Use Change Concepts.

The Change Concepts.

Appendix B: Tools and Methods to Support Improvement.

Methods and Tools for Viewing Systems and Processes.

Methods and Tools for Gathering Information.

Methods and Tools for Organizing Information.

Methods and Tools for Understanding Variation.

Methods and Tools for Understanding Relationships.

Methods and Tools for Project Management.

Standard Forms for Improvement Projects.

Appendix C: The Model for Improvement and Other Roadmaps.

Fundamental Questions for Improvement.

Alternative Roadmaps for Improvement Projects.




Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)