A System of Improvement is an integrated management framework guided by Dr. Deming’s System of Profound Knowledge, leading an organization toward its aim, enabling continual delivery of products, services and programs that will be in demand in the future and providing a place where people can take pride in their work. We provide guidance on the management theories and applications that support optimization of the organization.  This work integrates five activities:

  • Developing purpose and values
  • Understanding process performance
  • Gathering and using information
  • Planning
  • Managing improvement activities

Collaboratives were designed by Associates in Process Improvement (API) and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) to accelerate the pace of improvement in healthcare. Although originally designed for healthcare, the approach has been applied within other industries.  The method brings together multiple teams working toward a common aim and relies on the spread and adaptation of existing knowledge to many settings.

The Model for Improvement is a comprehensive framework for learning and making improvements.  It is used within a Collaborative and can be used on its own by a single team in any industry or setting.


A combination of Planned Experimentation and Quality Function Deployment can be applied to design products, services and programs that better meet customer needs in a shorter timeframe.

Measurement and statistical methods can help leaders and teams make decisions and understand if changes are improvements.  Facilitation and team skills are tools that support the leadership of improvement projects.  Relationship Awareness and the Strength Deployment Inventory (SDI) are used to understand Motivational Values Systems to enhance individual and team relationships and performance.