My perspective is that obstacles to supply chain operational excellence occur in business when there is a lack of alignment between people’s measure of success. In most organizations communication is a fundamental area that almost always requires work and improvement.
In those undergoing significant change this comes to light and is amplified, creating confusion and other feelings that often get in the way of the improvement process. Ensuring that the entire value stream is aligned and that ownership is established with a minimum of silos is critical to success in achieving operational excellence, not just improvements.
I like to refer to what we most often experience in this regard as “islands of success in a sea of waste”. Unless there is alignment which is often associated with Hoshin Kanri or Strategy Deployment, there will be a lot of good work that can go to waste because of the communication and accountability issues that inevitably arise when there are silos of control where the measurements of success are not directly tied to one another. In short, without compass alignment (Hoshin Kanri), there can never be total success for the entire value stream, which begins and ends with the customer and meeting their needs for quality, delivery and cost.