PDCA more than a methodology, a true anti-flame vest

PDCA to Improve Processes
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By Dilma Balbi.

Living in the rush of urgencies, the feeling of ever burning fires is constant.

red cross - attentionA span of tongue out, breathless, shallow breathing and little encouraging results. Wore the outfit?

Did you dress the outfit?

If the description bumped into you somehow, follow the text.

A simple methodology will help in fighting the flames and reducing the amount of smoke that prevents you from seeing a better horizon.

PDCA Cycle Sheet

Let's go?

PDCA changed into kids to get started right away.

Old concept, used by the most expressive corporations of all sizes, economic segments and quantity of employees, the PDCA is a methodology.

And the methods serve to smooth out the path from a "problem" to a "solution."

Understand that "problem" in this case means the origin; the starting point for achieving a particular goal.

It is routinely symbolized by a circle and among project management professionals the term "run the PDCA" is very common.

This expression will be revisited.

PDCA Cycle in EnglishPDCA Cycle in Portuguese

Who does what in the PDCA cycle?

Understand alphabet soup (English acronym) and good appetite!

  • O P is the word planning that is the beginning of everything.
    • The method recommends that in order to achieve any objective one must "attack" the problem with planning.
    • The phase, when performed in an appropriate way, makes understand the nuances and aspects involved.
    • When systematizing the steps, chain the actions, that is, what should be done first; and then and so on, our knowledge goes deeper into the theme. Let's identify what we have as resources and what we lack.
    • At last is indeed the beginning of the solution so sought after.
    • Acting impulsively, with little reflection, as a rule, is wasted energy and maximizes the chances of results far below those that could be obtained.
    • Stop at P as necessary. By the way; replace the sensation of parade by the sensation of conscious advancement.

At least it's fancy!


  • O D is of the word DO, that is, phase of action.
    • Once the planning phase is completed, you know how, when, by how much and with whom to act. We know the resources available, the succession of the steps to be followed, how much time we should spend on each one and how much we should invest.
    • It is the stage of production, "hand in the mass", stage of sweat, effort, phase of being on the field and playing the game. Stage of developing the tasks.
    • The phase of D is the exact time to do the what, as well as in, for how much and how long everything was thought of the previous phase.

PDCA more than a methodology, a true anti-flame vest

(Repeating for the concept to be assimilated)

  • O C is the word control or check.
    • Usually it creates a certain discomfort, at first, to observe that what was planned did not happen. Or by deviations of time, resources, time ... By factors unforeseen or incorrectly sized.
    • The phase of C is the phase of truth: the smaller the deviation between what was thought in the phase of P and what actually occurred in the phase of D more mature and assertive was his planning.
    • Remember that planning is not a supernatural act. It is not a premonitory knowledge, destined for the few. None of this!
    • The control between what was planned and what actually occurred is the great teacher, who teaches us, in a practical way, to verify deviations. This is how you can achieve improvement for other similar problems as well as the ability to plan and follow the planning in new situations.

Planning is different from crystal ball and phase C reveals this distance so that there is no doubt.

  • O A is the word acting.
    • Any deviation that was revealed in the C should be the subject of actions.
    • How to recover what was lost, how to get back on track to achieve the goal and so on.
    • From this phase, an action plan can be created which, in order to be executed, will require a new planning.

And the cycle automatically restarts.

You may have already understood the reason for the phrase "run the PDCA."

  • It is a constant to follow the 4 phases that, in turn, improve the driving of the problem to the best result.

PDCA cycleAfter all the explanations, start practicing the method, in small challenges, to get accustomed and soon you will also constantly run your PDCA.

PDCA Cycle Sheet

See just one practical PDCA cycle case

You have a shop with 3 employees and have noted that customer service can be improved.

He then decides to talk to his team to establish an improvement in this pattern and, of course, to reflect on the satisfaction of his audience and their increased sales.

Before understanding the methodology you could do a "sermon", showing the points in which the team is not reaching the intended, with the face of know it all.

Would it solve the problem?

Most probably not.

Or, at the very least, would have a small membership of the staff for the change in their care.

How can PDCA help?

1º) Phase of the P (planning)

  • Talk to the team to understand what prevents you from better customer service
  • Talk with customers to capture what they lack
  • Cross the information and return to the team with proposals
  • Establish, with them, the date of commencement of the new "operation"

2º) D phase (action)

  • On the right date encourage employees to
  • Your involvement at this stage is important.
  • How about you also meet some customers based on what they got right?
  • Being in the practice, with the "hand in the mass" it is easier to grasp the difficulties or possibilities of improvement

3º) C phase (control)

  • According to what has been agreed with the employees and their experience, proceed to collect evidence and record the deviations that are occurring.
  • What has been agreed is actually happening? Has there been a change? Is customer perception of improvement or indifference?
  • Larger sales?

4º) A phase (actuation)

  • By systematizing your records you will have a "panorama" of what has occurred.
  • Introduce yourself to your employees, discussing the reasons for deviations, or identifying the best results you've achieved.
  • Greet everyone for the commitment and promote a new "round" implementing other news.
  • It could be a promotion, a voucher to revisit to the store, anyway ...
  • New round of the PDCA cycle.

PDCA Cycle Sheet

It's your turn! Tell us how you did it, the benefits and the difficulties you encountered.

We can all learn from your experience!

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