In the mid-1990s, the BBC broadcast a series of six half-hour programmes entitled Sid’s Heroes. This featured workers from a range of organizations (the “heroes”) who had been challenged to improve the effectiveness of a central aspect of their work, using techniques introduced in two-day workshops by management consultant Sid Joynson. Sid suggested that a 30% increase in productivity was readily achievable in the chosen processes. And, based on the evidence of the shows, his confidence was well-founded.
Sadly, on a couple of occasions, crass comments by managers in response to the workers’ findings undermined the work that had been done. But Sid’s insistence that “the experts” in relation to the work processes were in the room with him, not in the management offices, was well demonstrated. I recall trying to buy a copy of the series from the BBC – on VHS(!) – but it was never made available for purchase.