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GM 5 Whys Corrective Action Process - Is anyone familiar with this 'format'?
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GM 5 Whys Corrective Action Process - Is anyone familiar with this 'format'?
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  Post Number #1  
Old 28th October 2004, 10:41 AM
Jonell

 
 
Total Posts: 102
Question GM 5 Whys Corrective Action Process - Is anyone familiar with this 'format'?

Hello,

Recently I heard the term "GM's 5 why corrective action". Is anyone familiar with this format, and if so, could you send me an example or the blank form that you're using?


Jonell

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  Post Number #2  
Old 28th October 2004, 11:01 AM
SteelMaiden's Avatar
SteelMaiden

 
 
Total Posts: 4,196
In it's "purist" form, 5 why only means that you ask why 5 times or until you can no longer come up with a deeper cause.

Why did the customer recieve 10 times the amount they wanted? The employee entered the number wrong.
Why did the employee enter the number wrong? They were having a bad day
Why was the employee having a bad day? The employee partied too much the night before
Why did the employee party too much? The employee is a crack addict.
Why did the addicted employee pass the pre-hire drug screening? The employee is the boss's nephew and he demanded that his nephew be hired even though the initial drug screen came back "dirty".
Root Cause: Unfair hiring practices by the "Boss" showing favoritism to relatives.

Now, this is kind of an "out there example, but it does demonstrate that what looked like a simple data entry problem has now turned into an HR nightmare if the problem is not fixed now. I like the 5Y, it is easy to grasp, and anybody can follow it without a bunch of additional paperwork, complicated work instructions, etc.
  Post Number #3  
Old 28th October 2004, 12:07 PM
Swagg - 2009

 
 
Total Posts: 35
5 Whys

There was an injury caused by a fall.

Why did the person fall? The floor was wet.

Why was the floor wet? There was a leaking valve.

Why was the valve leaking? The gasket was bad.

Why was the gasket bad? There is no Preventative Maint. program for checking the valve gaskets.
  Post Number #4  
Old 28th October 2004, 01:11 PM
SteelMaiden's Avatar
SteelMaiden

 
 
Total Posts: 4,196
Quote:
In Reply to Parent Post by Swagg

There was an injury caused by a fall.

Why did the person fall? The floor was wet.

Why was the floor wet? There was a leaking valve.

Why was the valve leaking? The gasket was bad.

Why was the gasket bad? There is no Preventative Maint. program for checking the valve gaskets.
Ah, but why was there no preventive maintenance program set up? Sometimes you need to go further than asking why 5 times. Keep asking until you cannot go any further. Once you get to the point where your answer is going to be "because so-and-so is a freakin' idiot, it is probably time to stop. But in your case it could be lack of training, or maybe just plain ol' lack of commitment to the program? No?
  Post Number #5  
Old 28th October 2004, 01:39 PM
Wes Bucey's Avatar
Wes Bucey

 
 
Total Posts: 11,159
I Say... Why stop at 5?

Ah, yes, indeed. Why stop at 5 whys?
I have often decried simplistic mottos, slogans, and "rules of thumb." They have a debilitating effect on the psyche by making things seem "complete."

This kind of mindset (that problems can be solved by asking ONLY five questions) is really insulting the intelligence of the worker, not helping him develop a critical thinking pattern which will serve both him and his organization.

Here's an analogy:
The danger of watching a program like CSI, where the protagonists search out the tiniest detail and solve 2 puzzling crimes in an hour, is that it omits the fact that 90% of police forces in the world do not have access to such technology and the 10% who do can only afford to use it in a small proportion of their cases. They also neglect to show or explain the real "lag time" involved to process all the material.

One of the children's museums in Chicago has a "grossology" section, which has included staking out a pig carcass to observe the deterioration over time due to bugs and bacteria http://www.chias.org/ - very CSI-like.
  Post Number #6  
Old 28th October 2004, 02:09 PM
Jonell

 
 
Total Posts: 102
Quote:
In Reply to Parent Post by Wes Bucey

[b]
Here's an analogy:
The danger of watching a program like CSI, where the protagonists search out the tiniest detail and solve 2 puzzling crimes in an hour, is that it omits the fact that 90% of police forces in the world do not have access to such technology and the 10% who do can only afford to use it in a small proportion of their cases. They also neglect to show or explain the real "lag time" involved to process all the material.

Hey! I happen to like CSI!!! All of those high "C" type personalities digging around, finding clues, !

Jonell
  Post Number #7  
Old 28th October 2004, 02:18 PM
Jonell

 
 
Total Posts: 102
Thanks to all

I was actually looking for an example of how someone was documenting a 5 why corrective action. I did actual find a pretty good example on the net, that not only asks the why 5 times, but it asks that 3 seperate times, for 3 different questions. 1) Why did the problem occur? followed by the 5 whys, 2) why was the defect not detected by the supplier/department? followed by the 5 whys, and 3) Process/Procedure issues? once again followed by the 5 whys. Pretty cool!

So, thanks to all who responded!

Jonell
  Post Number #8  
Old 28th October 2004, 08:03 PM
Ron Rompen's Avatar
Ron Rompen

 
 
Total Posts: 571
Jonell:

Your posted response must have been a result of psychic transfer (first documented case, ladies and gentlemen...please bear witness for me when I claim the prize).

We have a customer in Knoxville Tenn. who requires us to use the 5Yx3 matrix for nonconformances.

Why did the defect occur?

Why wasn't it detected (either at the production stage, or at least prior to shipment)?

Why are your processes and procedures so ineffective that the above two items BOTH happened?

The first time I saw this, I was dumbfounded....but now that I have used it a few times, I find it to be an EXCELLENT tool.

Fixing the (apparant) root cause doesn't always fix the REAL problem. Most failures can, with sufficient research, be driven back a a management failure to supply tools, training, or other resources. If you can demonstrate this to your management team (in the correct manner) you can REALLY eliminate not only the failure that you are dealing with right now, but also the POTENTIAL of failure in the future (D7 for those of us still dealing with the 8D matrix as well).
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