Kaizen in Ohio Government?
There is a lot of talk about the need for kaizen in the government. But, like anything, it isn't what you do - its HOW you do it that matters. Governor Ted Strickland of Ohio recently proposed that government offices be allowed to create a non-profit arm that will take in donations that will be used to train state workers in the "kaizen process".
But there are all sorts of contradictions that go along with Kaizen and Government:
1) Government is supposed to be big, slow and dumb. This is designed in by our founders so that power is limited to any one person or group. Power that is concentrated within a small, nimble and 'smart' government may move too quickly for us as normally distracted citizens to scrutinize our representatives motives and actions. This alone invites criticism:
Critics of the already house-passed bill say that this bill has ethical problems. For one, can the Highway Dep't step up ticketing if solicitations and quotas for their non-profit are not met by the publics 'voluntary' donations?
What about business donations? Can businesses win favor from say, the local environmental protection agency?
2) Kaizen is supposed to be fast and cheap. Government is slow and expensive, partly for the reasons stated above.
However, there is no reason why government cannot be efficient. With that said, why can't government leaders form their own kaizen teams today, without additional funding?
3) Non-profits are under fierce competition already. Kaizen can help companies become more competitive, often by reducing cost, under normal market conditions. When the government gets involved, it can become the monopoly player in that market. Just look at disaster insurance for example. Any right-minded citizen would be furious to learn that taxpayer dollars fund poor decisions made by homeowners who rebuild in hurricane coastlines - incentivized by the artificially low government insurance programs. The result is higher costs for Americans. Could government drive local food shelfs, fuel assistance and other non-government non-profits out of the local Cleveland market? Coupling the voluntary non-profit tax with existing taxes simply means the possibility for more government involvement in our lives is likely.
From a local Cleveland radio show, Lanigan and Malone offer up their thoughts on Strickland's Kaizen process...again, they don't seem to object to Ohio stateworkers improving their processes, the question is, what is stopping you today?