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Disciplines of Change


By Trevor Dean, Beth Vines, Lisa Roberts (TNU 2008)



Today’s global market meets the ever changing needs of customers and employees. Companies focus on continuously improving their products, services, processes, and talent. Change management keeps these improvements on track. Change management does more than just implement new tools or projects. Change management creates and orchestrates key roles, processes and tools that each discipline involved uses to effectively manage the people involved in, and affected by the change( 


Change management includes all  disciplines of an organization. Broken down into four categories: business management, strategic planning, human resources, and systems management; a breakdown of these disciplines follows:




Change Management Team - A change management team is critical to managing any change in a business. Identifying structures roles and responsibilities will ensure a greater success rate for change an organization is implementing.  This change management team will apply a change management methodology, formulate the strategy, develop plans for moving change forward through people, and supporting those people. The change management team should consist of members from executive and senior management, middle management, a project team, and project support people.


Resistance Management – A proactive approach to plan a response to, and identify potential resistance points. Identify ways to manage and avoid resistance. Include all levels of an organization in the resistance management plan.


Project Management – “The application of modern management techniques and systems to the execution of a project from start to finish, to achieve predetermined objectives of scope, quality, time and cost, to the equal satisfaction of those involved. “


Product Positioning - Product positioning involves creating a unique, consistent, and recognized customer perception about a firm’s offering and image. Position a product or service on the basis of an attitude or benefit, use or application, user, class, price, or level of quality. It targets a product for specific market segments and product needs at specific prices. Use many different ways to position the same product.


Product Marketing - Product marketing deals with the first of the "5P"'s of marketing: product, pricing, place, promotion, and people. Product marketing, as opposed to product management, deals with outbound marketing tasks.


Configuration management - Configuration management (CM) is the detailed recording and updating of information that describes an enterprise's computer systems and networks, including all hardware and software components. Such information typically includes the versions and updates that have been applied to installed software packages and the locations and network addresses of hardware devices.,,sid183_gci541468,00.html


Business Analyst - An individual who analyzes the operations of a department or functional unit with the purpose of developing a general systems solution to the problem that may or may not require automation. The business analyst, who is often part of a user department, can provide insights into its operation for the systems analyst who reports to the information systems department.


Trials & Tribulations of a Business Systems Analyst - This article speaks to the change that occurs when a person moves from production into a business analyst role.  This also illustrates how the BA changes the way client business is done.





Strategic Planning –Strategic planning determines where an organization is going over the next year or more, and how it's going to get there. The process is organization-wide, or focused on a major function such as a division, department or other major function. (The descriptions on this page assume that strategic planning is focused on the organization.)


Strategic Analysis - This activity includes conducting some sort of scan, or review, of the organization's environment (for example, of the political, social, economic and technical environment). Planners carefully consider various driving forces in the environment, for example, increasing competition, changing demographics, etc. Planners also look at the various strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (an acronym for this activity is SWOT) regarding the organization.


Action Planning - Action planning lays out how to accomplish the strategic goals. Action planning includes specifying objectives, and specific results with each strategic goal. Reaching a strategic goal involves accomplishing a set of objectives along the way. An objective is a goal, but on a smaller scale.


Risk Management - The MOF Risk Management Discipline applies proven risk-management techniques to the challenges that operations staff members face every day. There are many models, frameworks, and processes for managing risks-all of which discuss planning for an uncertain future. However, the MOF Risk Management Discipline offers greater value than many others through its key principles, consistent terminology, structured and repeatable six-step process, and a recognition that the MOF Risk Management Discipline needs to be an integral part of the overall operations framework.


Tactical Planning Definition - Systematic determination and scheduling of immediate or short-term activities required in achieving the objectives of strategic planning.


Tactical planning deals primarily with the implementation phase of the planning process. Tactical planning turns strategy into reality, Tactical planning usually has a 1-2 year time horizon, and Tactical planning is tightly integrated with the annual budget process.


Strategic Priorities Definition - Strategic objectives ranked by their importance in achieving the strategic goals.  All subsequent operational or tactical planning and resource allocation revolves on strategic priorities.


Product Management Definition

Ensuring over time that a product or service profitably meets the needs of customers by continually monitoring and modifying the elements of the marketing mix.


Product Planning - Product planning and product marketing are different yet complementary efforts with the objective of maximizing sales revenues and market share.


Product Development - The Discipline of Product Management - This article defines the roles of responsibility for each person within the team.  The article accounts for all services, goods, or other things offered for sale by an organization to be a product.


Market Sensing - Anticipating Market Problems with Jim Holland - This article speaks to the planning portion of product management.  Essentially, a company can utilize market-sensing tools to understand which way the market is trending.  This analysis can assist in a successful launch into the market.


Tactical Plan - The tactical plan demonstrates how the strategic plan executes.  The tactics are listed within a comprehensive Gantt chart which shows exactly what will be done and when, department by department.


Supply Chain Manager - Supply chain management (SCM) is the process of planning, implementing, and controlling the operations of the supply chain as efficiently as possible.  Supply Chain Management spans all movement and storage of raw materials, work-in-process inventory, and finished goods from point-of-origin to point-of-consumption. Supply chain management flows can be divided into three main flows:

  1. The product flow

  2. The information flow

  3. The finances flow,,sid182_gci214546,00.html


Managing the Change in Supply Chain Management Initiatives - This article speaks to how supply chain initiatives are only successful to the rate of thirty percent.  This article also addresses the J Curve effect when dealing with the supply chain.


Change Acceleration Process - Change acceleration process (CAP) is a set of principles designed to increase the success and accelerate the implementation of organizational change efforts.


Six Sigma  - A management philosophy developed by Motorola emphasizing extremely high objectives, collecting data, and analyzing results to a fine degree as a way to reduce defects in products and services. The Greek letter sigma is used to denote variation from a standard. Six Sigma organizations measure how many defects are in a process, and systematically eliminate them. In order for a company to achieve Six Sigma, production cannot include more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. An opportunity - defined as a chance for nonconformance.,,sid182_gci763122,00.html



Integrated Logistics Support (ILS) - The management and technical process of supportability and logistic support considerations integrated into the design, and taken into account throughout the life cycle of a systems/equipment, and by which all elements of logistic support are planned, acquired, tested, and provided in a timely and cost-effective manner. See also combined logistic support.




Recruitment – Defined as sourcing workers to fill vacancies, or enrolling new members. Employment recruitment includes: verifying the vacancy exists; drawing up a job specification; finding candidates; selecting them by interviewing and other means such as: conducting a psychometric test; and making a job offer. Effective recruitment achieves high organizational performance and minimizes labor turnover. Employees are recruited either externally or internally.


Succession Planning - Succession planning develops employees to fill key roles within the company. Succession planning recruits superior employees, develops their knowledge, skills, and abilities, and prepares them for advancement or promotion.


HR Management - Change management skills are a key part of the job for most Human Resources practitioners, according to a study by Personnel Today's sister publication, Employment Review.


“         More than four-fifths (83%) of the HR practitioners taking part said their organisation had undertaken initiatives requiring change management skills in the previous two years, with most reporting multiple change initiatives.


In all, the 93 respondents who reported major changes within their organisation had been involved in 659 separate initiatives - an average of seven each in 24 months.


Although few organisations (17%) had someone in their HR department devoted full time to change management, most (53%) had one or more practitioners with recognised expertise in the subject.

The survey found that the HR function was most commonly involved in change management programmes at the planning stage (46%) - once a decision to go ahead had been made, but before it was more widely announced.


At a further four out of 10 organisations (40%) taking part in the survey, HR was Involved earlier - in initiating change and before a decision was made on whether or not to proceed.

Just 10% were not involved until the implementation stage, and only 4% played no part in change.”


Culture and Change Management - A form of organizational transformation that is, at times, a radical and fundamental form of change. It involves the changing of basic values, norms, and beliefs among stakeholders in order to improve organizational performance. Companies today understand that improved processes can lead to better performance also need to understand cultural barriers that may exist that keep change from taking place. Unless companies identify and repair cultural barriers along with process barriers true organizational transformation cannot take place


Training plan - The training plan details the knowledge necessary for change to be successful, and the steps to overcome any knowledge gaps that exist. Training covers both the transition state (what do you need to know to be successful during the change) and the future state (what do you need to know to be successful after the implementation). One note - training is effective for building knowledge and ability, but should not be relied upon for building awareness and desire to change.


Communicating Change - The communication plan identifies the messages about the change delivered through the organization. These include both the business messages (why the organization is undertaking the change, risks of not making the change, etc.) and the personal messages (how the change impact's a person’s day-to-day work). Communication plans should 1) take into account the preferred senders of change messages (hint: there are two); 2) customize messages based on what each specific audience cares about (senior leaders care about much different things than front-line sponsors); 3) utilize a number of different channels (face-to-face is preferred, but be sure to use varied channels); and 4) repeat messages a number of times (don't assume employees will hear what you are saying the first time).


Communicating Change - Change management often comes with missteps, and poor communication is usually the reason behind those failures, according to Communication: The Foundation for Successful HR Program Implementation, a paper by the Hay Group, an HR consulting firm in Philadelphia. Some of the pitfalls and suggested remedies include the following:


  1. Expectations are not managed. If someone is brought in with the purpose of changing and improving HR, expectations can vary widely, especially on the timeline of how fast things will change. Miscommunication or no communication can lead to disappointment if change happens too slowly or too quickly.

  2. The wrong messengers are used. Employees tend to trust information from managers, the Hay Group found. Understanding the organization’s culture will dictate who the best messenger for change is—the manager, the senior executive team or HR.

  3. Communication is too sudden. Leaders need to prepare employees for program changes, allow time for the message to sink in and give employees an opportunity to provide feedback before a change is initiated. This tactic also extends to managers who should be included in the beginning stages of the plan if they are expected to implement changes and communicate the changes to employees.

  4. Communication is not aligned with business realities. “Messages may sugarcoat or not truly address the reasons for the change,” according to the Hay Group report. Messages should be honest if they are to be accepted by employees, and that includes the reasons behind the change and the projected outcomes.

  5. Communication is too narrow. If the communication focuses too much on detail and technicalities and doesn’t put the change into the overall context of the organization’s goals, it will fail to resonate with employees. “Messages must be well considered, concise, consistent and ubiquitous,” according to the Hay Group.


Organizational Development - Major Roles during Change and Capacity Building - The process of organizational change includes a variety of key roles. These roles are filled by various individuals or groups at various times during the change process. Individuals or groups can fill more than one role.


Change Initiator - It is conventional wisdom among organizational development consultants that successful change is often provoked by a deep “hurt” or crisis in the organization, for example, dramatic reduction in sales, loss of a key leader in the organization, warnings from a major investor, or even actions of a key competitor. It is not uncommon then that someone inside the organization reacts to that deep hurt and suggests the need for a major change effort. Often the person who initiates the change is not the person who becomes the primary change agent.


Change Agent - The change agent is the person responsible for organizing and coordinating the overall change effort. The change agent role can be filled by different people at different times during the project. For example, an outside consultant might be the first change agent. After the project plan has been developed and begins implementation, the change agent might be an implementation team comprised of people from the organization. If the change effort stalls out, the change agent might be a top leader in the organization who intercedes to ensure the change process continues in a timely fashion.


Champion for Change - Change efforts often require a person or group who continues to build and sustain strong enthusiasm about the change. This includes reminding everyone of why the change is occurring in the first place, the many benefits that have come and will come from the change process. The champion might be the same person as the change agent at various times in the project.


Sponsor of Change - Usually, there is a one key internal person or department that is officially the “sponsor,” or official role responsible for coordinating the change process. In large organizations, that sponsor often is a department, such as Human Resources, Strategic Planning or Information Technology. In smaller organizations, the sponsor might be a team of senior leaders working to ensure that the change effort stays on schedule and is sustained by ongoing provision of resources and training.


Leadership, Supervision and Delegation - In this Field Guide, leadership is defined as setting direction and influencing people to follow that direction. A person can lead themselves, other individuals, other groups or an entire organization.

Supervision is guiding the development and productivity of people in the organization. Effective supervisors are able to achieve goals by guiding the work of other people – by delegating.




IT Service Management - Unifies customer service via the use of service desk, change, and requirements management.


  • IT Service Management captures data on problems, research possible resolutions to fix the problems, and implements a change management request to fix the issues.

  • Monitors an open issue, completes all tests prior to a system change.

  • IT services and development teams are able to respond to changes quickly and in coordination with the business while ensuring industry best practices and compliance.


Incident management - Principal roles and responsibilities for incident management are defined according to a company’s best practices. According to Microsoft; “organizations might need to combine some roles, depending on organizational size, organizational structure, and the underlying service level agreements existing between the IT department and the business it serves.”  This was true for a company that I worked for as an IT Administrator.  In this role we had to combine our services for the network to one centralized call center and server support center.  When we combined these roles like Microsoft, we also developed roles that are required for incident management.  As with Microsoft, it is important to remember that these are roles rather than job descriptions. The roles required within the incident management process are:


·       Incident manager

·       Service desk analyst

·       Major incident manager

·       Specialist support


ITIL framework, change management – According to the Whitepapers on the BNET Business Network, the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) framework offers IT organizations a methodology to achieve that goal by linking business perspectives with IT infrastructure management. Service Level Management (SLM) is one of several disciplines outlined by ITIL. ITIL advocates adoption of Service Level Agreements (SLAs), which have written agreements between business units and IT suppliers. The agreement documents have agreed upon levels of service... The goal of service level management, therefore, is to maintain and improve service quality as defined in the SLA.


Defining IT Portfolio Management - According to the business cases through the site, IT investments are now the norm rather than the exception. However, projects are still considered individually as discrete investments. Likewise, there is often a segmentation between new application spending, the realm of project portfolio management (PPM), existing application maintenance, the realm of application portfolio management (APM), and infrastructure investment. As of yet, few, if any, organizations are looking holistically at the entire IT budget as a unified suite of investments. IT organizations can apply many of the same tools the financial community uses to build and manage financial portfolios to maximize benefits, mitigate risks, and better meet the needs of its constituent customers. Although the science of IT portfolio management is in its infancy, understanding the concepts and laying the groundwork now will allow for quicker adoption later as the tools and tenets become better defined over the coming years. The ultimate goal is delivering to the organization predictable and higher returns at the appropriate level of risk. Following, Forrester lays out the basic concepts and definition of IT portfolio management, its relationship to other management processes, and Forrester's research agenda for coverage of these areas.,39024759,60134224p,00.htm


Systems engineering - is an interdisciplinary process that ensures that the customer's needs are satisfied throughout a system's entire life cycle. This process is comprised of the following seven tasks.


  1. State the problem. Stating the problem is the most important systems engineering task. It entails identifying customers, understanding customer needs, establishing the need for change, discovering requirements and defining system functions.

  2. Investigate alternatives. Alternatives are investigated and evaluated based on performance, cost and risk.

  3. Model the system. Running models clarifies requirements, reveals bottlenecks and fragmented activities, reduces cost and exposes duplication of efforts.

  4. Integrate. Integration means designing interfaces and bringing system elements together so they work as a whole. This requires extensive communication and coordination.

  5. Launch the system. Launching the system means running the system and producing outputs -- making the system do what it was intended to do.

  6. Assess performance. Performance is assessed using evaluation criteria, technical performance measures and measures -- measurement is the key. If you cannot measure it, you cannot control it. If you cannot control it, you cannot improve it.

  7. Re-evaluation. Re-evaluation should be a continual and iterative process with many parallel loops.


Large Project Management Modern business is said to be in a "project age." This "age" involves the creation, management and delivery of projects. Business projects, product projects, service projects, government projects. Project Management is the management of projects. The precise definition of a project and the management processes is difficult without first establishing a context and a business domain.


As well the "normative" approaches are being challenged by heuristic and participative approaches. These challenges bring new and important ideas to the domain of project management. This also brings out diversions to the established definitions and practices, through attempts to be innovative or replace the thread bare processes that have failed us in the past. In some cases the challengers have not "done their homework" or desire to "skip to the end" with new and innovative approaches without first having verified that they are appropriate to the domain and context or that they actually work in real worlds situations.


Control Engineering Technology Discipline - Generated power is used to drive motors, machines, electrical drives and power electronics. The need is great for expert generation, transmission and distribution engineers, a range of different professionals involved in the field of power and control engineering. The discipline is concerned with power and the control systems prevalent and used in relation to power.



Logistics - (business definition) Logistics is defined as a business planning framework for the management of material, service, information and capital flows. It includes the increasingly complex information, communication and control systems required in today's business environment. -- (Logistix Partners Oy, Helsinki, FI, 1996)


Logistics - (military definition) The science of planning and carrying out the movement and maintenance of forces.... those aspects of military operations that deal with the design and development, acquisition, storage, movement, distribution, maintenance, evacuation and disposition of material; movement, evacuation, and hospitalization of personnel; acquisition of construction, maintenance, operation and disposition of facilities; and acquisition of furnishing of services. -- (JCS Pub 1-02 excerpt)


Logistics - The procurement, maintenance, distribution, and replacement of personnel and materiel.


Information Technology - Information technology (IT) has recently emerged as a separate academic discipline. The IT discipline is related to, but distinct from, computer science, information systems, and software engineering. Given this relationship to existing computing programs, one should expect the driving factors that have energized the emergence of the IT discipline to have some impact on the previously existing programs as well. In this paper we report some experiences at three institutions that illustrate some of the ways the new IT discipline has influenced curricular choices. After examining these three cases, we suggest that they may help frame the curricular questions that many institutions will consider as they assess the impact of the emerging discipline of IT on their programs.


Configuration Management (CM) - in this context is defined as the specification, identification, recording, and reporting of Information Technology components, including their versions and relationships throughout the lifecycle of the configuration items.


The purpose of CM is to:

·        Maintain a consistent set of work products as they evolve

·        Maintain consistent builds of the software

·        Provide an efficient means to adapt to changes and issues, and re-plan work Accordingly

·        Provide data for measuring progress


Configuration Change Management - This discipline spans the entire lifecycle. Every other discipline relies upon the configuration and change management discipline to maintain a consistent, up-to-date, set of work products -- and to prioritize and track changes to those work products -- throughout the lifecycle; or


Configuration and change management - Performed by everyone on the development team. Because of the importance and pervasiveness of this discipline, configuration and change management guidance is associated with tasks and work products in all other disciplines.


Configuration Management and Engineering Change Control

This article defines the relationship between configuration management and engineering change control. The two functions are synonymous when a change is occurring.  This article also accounts for what calls for a change to occur.

Configuration items or CIs – According to IBM, A configuration item (CI) is any component of an information technology infrastructure that is under the control of configuration management. Configuration items (CIs) can be individually managed and versioned, to be contained units for the purposes of identification and change control.  Identification of configuration items usually occurs, by names, version numbers, and other attributes. The lowest level CI is usually the smallest unit changed independently of other components. CIs vary in complexity, size, and type. They can range from an entire service, which may consist of hardware, software, and documentation to a single program module or a minor hardware component. A CI can also be one of the following levels:


  • Composite CI

  • Root CI

  • Contained CI


Most CI’s occur due to an issue with a service, software, or piece of hardware that has had a failure and needs immediate change control to fix the problem.  Server restoration depends on software versions. Out of date software versions require updates.


Administering CIs - Creation and implementation of software tools in system management help track and administer CI’s.  According to IBM, this product provides comprehensive functionality for creating configuration items (CIs) and registering the items to the Configuration Management Database (CMDB). You can view and update CI properties, and you can delete a CI from the CMDB. You can also administer CI reports.  The way that IBM uses this tool is through the following Steps:


  • Searching for configuration items - Use this procedure to search for configuration items (CIs). You would want to perform a search to see what CIs are in the Configuration Management Database (CMDB) and to find CIs that you want to perform other tasks on. For example, if you want to view or update configuration item (CI) properties, delete a CI, create CI relationships, or perform other CI related tasks, you can search for CIs that meet certain criteria to include in those tasks.

  • Creating configuration items - Use this procedure to create a configuration item (CI). Creating CIs is one of the primary tasks in using IBM® Change and Configuration Management database. You can create CIs of a wide variety of types. CIs are stored in the Configuration Management Database (CMDB).

  • Creating contained configuration items - Use this procedure to create a contained configuration item (CI). Creating CIs is one of the primary tasks in using IBM Change and Configuration Management database. You can create CIs of a wide variety of types. CIs are stored in the Configuration Management Database (CMDB).

  • Adding existing configuration items - Use this procedure to add existing configuration items (CIs) to other CIs. CIs are stored in the Configuration Management Database (CMDB).

  • Updating configuration item properties - Use this procedure to update configuration item (CI) properties. Updates to CI properties are necessary to keep the information in the Configuration Management database (CMDB) correct. For example, the version or the CI owner may change which will required the CI properties to be updated.

Business Intelligence - The primary objective of the Change Management process is to ensure that standardized methods and procedures are used for efficient and prompt handling of all changes, in order to minimize the impact of change-related incidents upon service quality, and consequently to improve the day-to-day operations of the organization.



Knowledge management - is a rapidly developing area within which it is essential that the information and library professions realize they have a critical role. The rate of change prompted by the advent of knowledge management is such that we are in clear danger of being left out as the framework of career opportunities develops and changes over the next few years.


Industrial Engineering - offers the most wide-ranging array of opportunities in terms of employment, and it is distinguished by its flexibility. While other engineering disciplines tend to apply skills to very specific areas, Industrial Engineers may be found working everywhere: from traditional manufacturing companies to airlines, from distribution companies to financial institutions, from major medical establishments to consulting companies, from high-tech corporations to companies in the food industry.


Project Portfolio Management - PPM is about ensuring you have a group of projects focused on taking the business somewhere they want to go. It is about being able to respond quickly to changes in the environment. It is about short projects that give quick wins. It is about the business setting direction and then creating a series of steps to get there.  The benefits it brings the business are:


  • Faster response to changing conditions

  • More quick wins

  • Not having minor projects escalate into major undertakings

  • Focus on what will achieve the initiative rather than on the project itself

  • IT responsibilities centered on one business area rather than trying to compromise across several

  • Blending business and IT projects and treating both as contributors to the same goal

  • Portfolios can be constantly reviewed and altered if necessary to produce the highest returns based on changing situations

  • Management sees the projects as groups of activities contributing to an initiative. They are not a series of unrelated work.

  • Dependencies are easier to identify. If we don't upgrade these servers, we can't run the new software. Both are part of the same initiative.


Portfolio Management - Portfolio Management addresses the processes, practices, and specific activities to perform continuous and consistent evaluation, prioritization, budgeting, and selection of investments that provide the greatest value and contribution to the strategic interest of the organization. Through portfolio management, an organization can explicitly assess the tradeoffs among competing investment opportunities in terms of their benefit, costs, and risks.



Just-In-Time - A strategy for inventory management in which raw materials and components are delivered from the vendor or supplier immediately before they are needed in the manufacturing process.


Just-In-Time is a phrase that originated at Toyota. Originally, it described how material should be processed and moved in order to arrive "Just in Time" for the next operation. Common usage at Toyota extended the phrase to mean the entire complex of techniques being developed by Shingo, Ohno and Eiji Toyoda.  As knowledge of the system began to spread, "Just in Time," as a phrase spread with it.


Continuous flow manufacturing - CFM is a variation of just in time (JIT) manufacturing. CFM focuses on waste elimination, continuous improvement, and company wide involvement.




Research shows numerous disciplines involved in change management. In fact, not one function or discipline in any organization approaching change will not be impacted by the change. The interdependent nature of organizations make it imperative that leadership gets all aspects of an organization involved in change management at the earliest possible time.  Therefore, all of the disciplines outlined in this paper are an important part of change management.


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