Fishbone Diagram Template

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Fishbone Diagram Template

What is the template?

The Fishbone Diagram template is a tool to help you identify the root causes or component parts of a specific problem or project. It was created by Japanese engineering professor and organizational theorist Kaoru Ishikawa who is noted for his contributions to quality management innovation. It can be used in workshop context as well as on your own.

How do you use it?

The following steps will help you get started using the Fishbone Diagram template.

Step 1: Identify the problem

Identify the problem the team is looking to solve. List that within the head of the diagram.

Step 2: Provide overarching causes

Provide at least four overarching causes that may contribute to the problem. Categories of causes can include processes, skills, people, measurements, etc. These causes branch directly from the spine of the diagram, making the first bones of the fish.

Step 3: Brainstorm contributing factors

For each cause that has been identified, brainstorm any supporting information that may contribute to that cause. The 5-Whys template may be helpful in identifying these factors. These contributing factors are drawn off from the causes, creating more structure to the fish diagram.

Step 4: Review and tackle

After your Fishbone Diagram is complete, the team should be able to see the root causes of the initial problem they identified. As a team, assign owners and next steps to address the root causes and solve the problem.

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