Cause and Effect Diagram, also known as Fish Diagram or Ishikawa Diagram, is a tool you can use to analyze the root causes of a problem.
In other words, it allows you to graphically rank all the causes that can contribute to the creation of a particular effect.
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- What is a cause and effect diagram?
- Steps to create the cause and effect diagram.
What is a cause and effect diagram?
It is a widely used tool to graphically identify and classify the root causes of a problem.
That is, the diagram takes into account all aspects that can lead to the emergence of a problem within the organization.
Graphically it consists of a box representing the fish head at one of its ends, a straight line representing its column and 4 more lines pointing to the main line representing the main spines.
In this sense, each of them, in turn, has two or three smaller thorns on which to add the various causes that may have caused the problem.
Graphically it looks like this:
In general, the implementation of the cause and effect diagram is carried out in a group, using brainstorming to analyze and incorporate the different viewpoints and to compare this information with facts and real data.
Without a doubt, it is very useful for businesses due to its ease of use.
Steps to create a cause and effect diagram
Next, we’ll show you how to create a cause and effect diagram from scratch.
To do this, you will learn about the case of the La Percha company.
Watch Fabiana use the cause and effect diagram to find the root causes of a problem.
Step 1: Identify the problem
The problem is the situation that you want to correct or improve.
In this case, the problem must be specific or concrete.
That is, you must write it clearly and concisely in relation to the effect that occurs in the situation being analyzed.
Starting with our example, Fabiana found that her sales had been flat for a few months. For this reason, he made the decision to evaluate the possible causes through a cause and effect diagram.
Step 2: Add a sentence that summarizes the problem
Next, draw a horizontal arrow pointing to the right and write the sentence that defines the identified problem.
You can draw a box around the problem to describe the fish’s head.
Step 3: Draw the main spikes
The main thorns represent the categories of resources or factors that could be causing the problem.
Although there are no rules specifying what type of categories should be used, the most common are:
- Materials: are the raw materials used to obtain a final product.
- Methods: Define how you will run the process and what are the prerequisites for doing so.
- Machines: are all machines and devices used to perform the task.
- People: Employees involved in the process throughout the production chain.
- Environment: environmental conditions affecting the process, such as B. Temperature.
However, you can use the ones that best suit your situation.
Pay attention to Fabiana’s diagram:
Step 4: Brainstorm the root causes of the problem
Now, by brainstorming and considering the main categories mentioned in the previous section, the working group can identify the different causes of the problem.
The ideas generated in this step will guide the selection of the most likely root causes.
Therefore, to ensure that the work team defines the root causes well, you can use the 5 whys technique.
Now, know the possible causes that Fabiana and her work team considered:
Step 5: Identify the root cause candidates
Not all of the causes developed in the previous section may be related to the problem.
Because of this, the work team needs to narrow down the number of causes to those they deem more probable, which you can mark with an asterisk on the cause-and-effect diagram.
Fabiana gave an asterisk
Cause and Effect Diagram
Now you already know the steps to create the chart.
Remember that its main function is to know the root causes of a problem and then find the appropriate solutions to solve it.
If you want to know more tools for decision making, I invite you to read the following posts:
Finally, you know what a cause and effect diagram is.
It is a very useful tool to identify the possible root causes of a problem in order to find the most suitable solution.
- Now don’t forget that to run this tool you need to follow these steps:
- Part of an empty chart that needs to be filled in from scratch together with the work team.
- Write in detail and specifically the problem or effect that occurs.
- Draw a straight line pointing to the right and place the expression that describes the problem in a box.
- Identify the categories that the root causes of the problem fall into and place them on the diagram.
- Think of possible causes and add them to the diagram.
Identify the most likely causes of the problem.
You are now ready to use the cause and effect diagram as a tool in your company.
Don’t forget that thanks to its simplicity of use, it’s very useful since it allows you to see and understand everyday problems in order to find a solution. We put at your disposal an excellent management system calledPlatzilla
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Until next time!