Elegant checklist

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…a complicated job in a complicated environment, like, say, flying a plane.

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You want to make sure something is ready to be promoted to the next phase or level.

The checklist demonstrates when something is done in this step and thus equals ready for the next step:

  • Purpose:
    • Remind people what must be done (they already know how to do it)
  • Content:
    • Captures customer feedback and preserves knowledge
    • Frees people to pay attention to the complicated aspects of a job
  • Important!
    • Test-drive and refine frequently
    • Modify to fit each environment

A !ghter pilot's checklist before he enters aerial combat is a mental aid that frees his mind for “higher order” thinking.

Routine task checklists and standardized procedures can free brainpower for creative problem solving which can make the difference between success and failure.


Use and evolve a concise and complete checklist detailing what must be done before advancing.

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