The Incident of the Boot and the Bonnet

I can’t believe that my last blog post was in August. The past few months have just flown by. Life has been beyond busy. Time gets eaten away by the gym, running and my school governor duties. But I wouldn’t have it any other way, as it’s all so rewarding.

About a month ago I drafted a blog post called “Bounce”. It’s all about personal resilience. After penning the final word I read it through and decided that it didn’t feel quite ready, so I put it on ice, to reflect. During the intervening weeks I’ve got a new computer and have discovered that during the changeover, my blog has been lost. This has certainly tested my resilience ! In a way, losing the blog has done me a favour, as it has forced me to re-think what I want to say and will give me the opportunity to incorporate some new concepts and ideas that I’ve recently come across.

As friends and colleagues will tell you, I have spent the last year trying to tempt, persuade and very occassionally, bribe them to write a guest blog post for The Lettuce Patch. Finally, a very talented colleague has come up trumps and, spookily, it touches on personal resilience.

So whilst I finalise my next blog post and get back into the habit of making regular postings (it’s on my New Year’s Resolution list), please settle yourself down in your most comfortable chair, with a cup (or glass) or something warming, and enjoy Martin Robinson’s “The Incident of the Boot and the Bonnet”. Wishing you and your families a wonderful Christmas !

It’s funny how one small event can start you seeing things very differently. It happened after some kind resident in Ryde put their boot into one of my car panels, forcing me to find an alternative and safer place to park my car.

So I parked on the other side of Ryde and wandered down to catch the Hovercraft home. It was like walking through a different place. This time the houses were slightly grander with a few hidden, narrow roads – it felt differenct, but it was the same place. I was looking at things from a different perspective and I saw something different. Even the seafront looked different.

On the way back to pick my car up the next day for the journey to work, it reminded me about a Japanese Lean technique called “Genchi Genbutsu” or “Go, Look See” and it means literally that.

It must have been on my mind all week as I took lots of opportunities to stop and observe things. The main hospital corridor was interesting; who was moving through, which departments patients couldn’t find, and how much business I did as staff simply passed by.

Next, sitting in an Outpatient area with patients I wrote another list; phones ringing too much, the natural flare of a receptionist (fed back to her) and a possible cost saving idea linked with literature.

A colleague recommended I try the technique at the next meeting I went to; there were two conversations going on in that room and only one of the verbally.

On top of all that, I’ve just spent the morning as a healthcare support worker and I’m calling that “Go, Look, See, Do”. It has been really interesting. giving me a number of ideas to follow up, more of an understanding of the role and staff seemed to appreciate me doing it too.

Like all things, there’s a lot more to Genchi Genbutsu (see the Internet), but here’s my personal challenge to you. Do your own “Do, Look See” and see what a new perspective might give you.

Old lady picture

Have you turned the picutre of the old lady upside down yet ?

Martin Robinson


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