Friday, October 9, 2009

A flu-sey improvement

Everyone remain calm. As the onset of the flu season commences, I find myself home with my son who is ill with some sort of sickness. Even though I am home bound, the desire to eliminate waste has once again helped me pass the time until the boy becomes well. As I have been working from home and tending to my child, my wife and I came up with kaizens to make the nursing time at home a little bit easier.

Once the digital thermometer failed, I found myself too cheap and too tired to go out and replace it. So we get the old mercury thermometer...but it is in Celsius and hard to read. Neither my wife or I are good at converting from C to F and I have a hard time reading the scale because of my old eyes. Here's what we did:

1) I found the optimal process for reading the temperature. On the end of the thermometer, there is a triangle. If you hold it up to read it and point the top of the triangle toward your eyes, you can see the level of mercury and the reading is very easily seen. No more wasting time twirling the thermometer every which way trying to read the level.

2) My wife discovered that if she takes the reading in the kitchen, she can get the number and look at the outside thermometer which has both C and F , She just cross references and gets the Fahrenheit value. Quick, easy, and no calculation necessary.

Lastly, we believe in taking vitamin C to help stave off seasonal bugs but my son was resistant in taking them. His objection was due to looking on the vitamin shelf and sorting through several bottles of supplements...which he hates to do. My wife and I agreed that if the chewable vitamins were easier to find, he would take them more often. So, we simple moved them to a window sill next to the sink so that he can readily locate the bottle.

These are small things but they make a difference by reducing time, frustration, and effort when everyone is feeling a little under the weather.

What have you improved today?

Dan Lafever, Kaizeneer

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