STOP Mistakes Today!

Without Mistake-Proofing, Problem-Solving Often Yields Mediocre Results

Two teams were tasked with the problem of getting people to properly sort their trash into one of three bins.  

Here is what Team 1 came up with:



A good solution.  Clear communications using simple words, pictures and color-coding.

Here is what Team 2 came up with:



Clearly, Team 2 came up with a much better solution.  Simple, elegant and robust.  

The Many Shades of Mistake-Proofing

Not all mistake-proofing solutions are equally powerful.  The effectiveness of a solution is a function of the type of effect and how that effect is triggered.  

There are four types of effects:  Forced Control, Shutdown, Warning and Sensory Alert.  Forced Control and Shutdown Effects are triggered automatically whereas Warning and Sensory Alert depend on user discretion and therefore aren't as robust. 


Rating the Robustness of Mistake-Proofing Solutions

It helps to evaluate the robustness of your solutions before they are implemented.  Has the team addressed the problem in a way that it will not come back again or does the solution rely heavily on operator discretion?  We have created a worksheet you can use to evaluate the solutions.


Helpful Resources

Learn more about the basics of Mistake-Proofing
Worksheet:  How Robust is Your Solution?
Integrating Mistake-Proofing with Problem-Solving Processes

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Mistake-Proofing Training for Your Team

When it comes time for problem-solving teams to come up with solutions, they often think in terms of making it easy to do things right instead of making it impossible to do things wrong.  Mistake-Proofing is a tool that your teams need if they are going to come up with robust solutions.  

With our online Mistake-Proofing Training, your team will have the tools they need to eliminate problems for good.  We'll do the training; you help the team apply mistake-proofing to real problems.  For just $590 you can train up to 10 people in the process and tools of Mistake-Proofing.  

Learn more about our online Mistake-Proofing training

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