Data Quackery stop sign

Metrics, Charts and Reports

That look pretty, promise much, but are pretty worthless - AND how to fix them

Dr Mike Bell

Key Skill - Making the Complex Simple

Dr Mike Bell runs Simple Improvement Ltd. a continuous improvement training and coaching business based in Scotland. He is unique in his ability both to understand complex data analysis and be able to simplify it down so that everyone can use it. Contrast this with statisticians who are not able to come down to the right level, or trainers without a background in analysis who are frightened of the subject - both tend to confuse, rather than clarify. Mike has been teaching simple analysis for more than 10 years and has had great success in helping people at all levels of organisations across all sectors. His experience includes training in 10 countries across 4 continents and has a reputation for making this potentially dry subject really good fun.

Mike is now working with the Scottish Ambulance Service (SAS) as an Improvement Lead in the Strategy Team.

Simple Improvement was set-up in 2010 and has helped organisations in all sectors develop, implement and monitor improvement programmes, particularly those based on Practical Process Improvement.

Recommendations for Dr Mike Bell

“Mike Bell is the most engaging instructor with whom I have had the pleasure of working.  He takes a daunting topic, like statistical process control, and breaks it down into easily understandable “chunks” that he then supports with real-world examples and in-class demonstrations.  He has a natural ability to understand his audience and connect with them.”

Jeff Fowler, QA Manager, Florida USA

"Mike provided me with training on how to train and ultimately teach our company's chosen quality improvement program. This was an intense 5 day program and Mike has a superb training style, he not only connected and interacted well with the class, but he also delivered the program with pride and passion. It was clearly evident that Mike had prepared well, and subsequently was equipped with all the necessary knowledge and for 5 days kept a class of some 28 individuals from around the world highly engaged and interested.”

Laura Andrews, Business Support Services Manager, Loughborough, UK

“If you need a person who can take potentially complex process improvement methodologies, condense them down into logically simple, practical methods and tools that everyone can understand and apply then Mike Bell is your man. I have been involved directly in Process Improvement in many companies for most of my working career and I know nobody better at getting people involved, focused on improvement and getting results.”

Adrian Free, VP Practical Process Improvement, UK

“Mike's continuous improvement training sessions are the best training sessions I have attended. They were well structured, fun, informative and taught in a way that makes the theory very easy to understand.”

Matthew Wolfenden, PPI Process Manager, Hemel Hempsted, UK

“PPI.. Never heard of it!! Then I met Mike. Mike is one of the most amazing people I have ever met, his energy and tenacity whilst teaching PPI tools has allowed me to not only absorb the material but has also given me the confidence to be able to teach others. I have been very lucky to have been trained and mentored by Mike, his training techniques are simple and fun for everyone to follow.”

Michelle Spencer, Accountant, Basingstoke, UK

“I have known Mike for about 18 months. He has a pleasant and easy to get on with demeanor which makes working with him easy. He has tremendous Process Improvement knowledge and applies it well it different situations. It is not a case of 'one size fits all'. He is one of those guys who has experienced what it is like to improve businesses. He is thorough in his execution and always achieves a result. I have no hesitation in recommending Mike and the service he provides.”

Peter Russell, Materials and Logistics Group Manager, Basingstoke, UK

“Over the 10 years I have worked in Continuous Improvement I have come across many tools and many different applications of the tools but none of them have been as accessible as PPI. PPI is the best process I have come across to involve everyone in making the changes that drive a business forward. Mike Bell is a fantastic coach and mentor with a great depth of knowledge on this subject and the more complex subject of change management and the effect this has on people. If I have the opportunity in the future I would work with Mike again to implement change the right way, the first time.

Sarah Walton, Continuous Improvement Coordinator, Basingstoke, UK

“To establish a continuous improvement culture on site Mike was instrumental in training cross functional project teams over 10/12 weeks to solve problems using Practical Process Improvement (PPI) to derive solutions through data collection and subsequent analysis. PPI is a structured eight step method for process improvement, involving three formal days of training, four half days coaching/mentoring and a review of the teams efforts termed ‘Report Out’ that is delivered to stakeholders by a team member. PPI is taught by a ‘qualified’ PPI Process Manager, Mike having achieved this internal qualification prior to training project teams.

I was a member of one of the first two project team to be trained by Mike using the eight step method of problem solving which also included a team member from one of our major customers to improve the process of specification changes. Two teams are trained together to obtain feedback from each other on their projects. The training consisted of three formal days using a team training book (which each team member received). Mike explained page by page which included: an overview of PPI and the Eight Step Method, process and quality improvement, basic tools and statistical process control. Throughout the training there were breakout sessions to allow teams to practically use a tool/technique, team discussions on various topics raised in the team training book and DVD’s to explain/expand on other points raised in the training book. During and after the above training teams utilised what they had learnt and applied it to solve the problem.

After formal training the teams presented their projects several times for review and subsequent coaching/mentoring by Mike to ensure that the projects would be successful and deliver practical solutions to the problem resulting in financial benefits. To gain qualification as a PPI Process Manager I was fully supported by Mike who not only sponsored me but also observed me training, coaching and mentoring two cross functional teams through the Eight Step Method over a twelve week period. This involved his attendance and critique at each of the formal, review and Report Out days. I was provided with a detailed written summary of my performance both from a positive perspective and opportunities highlighted for possible improvements. I found this invaluable providing me with the confidence and knowledge to continue in this role training teams and delivering financial benefits to my employer year on year”

Barry Cunningham, Continuous Improvement Coordinator, Cramlington, UK