May 25, 2022 | Mark Paradies

Fast-Cheap-Great – You Can’t Have All Three

Hello Mark, Ya that’s ok for sure, if you don’t mind linking back to my website as well for credit that’d be wonderful. Thank you so much, I look forward to reading it. Colin Harman

Your Choice – What Can You Lose?

The graphic above is based on a famous concept. Colin Harmon drew the graphic for his blog to explain graphic design. Everybody wants Great graphic design but they also want Fast and Cheap (maybe even free). But as his diagram shows, you can’t have all three.

The concept applies just as well to root cause analysis.

Think about this … Why do you train employees to investigate accidents, incidents, quality problems, equipment failures, and process upsets? Because those adverse events can:

  • Cost Lives
  • Cause Injuries
  • Ruin the Reputation of Your Product and Company
  • Cause Regulatory Issues (and Big Fines)
  • Cause Expensive Downtime
  • Cause Missed Schedules and Delayed Shipments

Fast or Cheap is Nice – But Great is an Imperative!

When you think about your investment in root cause analysis training, think about the results you want. Review the diagram above. Many managers want something for nothing (very cheap, maybe even free).

They also want fast.

But they must have GREAT. Why? They need to learn from past problems to prevent future issues. (It is even better if you can learn from small problems to prevent big accidents.)

They can’t afford repeat incidents that lead to major accidents. Major accidents can cut short a plant manager’s career.

Yet many managers have their people apply 5 Whys (fast and cheap but not great). Why do I say 5 Whys isn’t great? Read this comparison…

Comparing 5-Whys with Advanced Root Cause Analysis

Managers hope for GREAT while demanding Fast and Cheap. But look at the Venn Diagram at the top of the page. Managers can’t have fast and great and cheap. That’s an “impossible utopia”. What do they end up with? “Something dipped in ugly sauce and created with haste and carelessness!”  That’s definitely NOT great.

Do You and Your Management Need Great?

If you believe that you and your management need GREAT when it comes to root cause analysis, you must invest in your employee’s education and get a great return on your training investment.

What will your return on investment look like?

  • No Fatalities
  • Reduced Injuries (Better LTI Stats)
  • A Reputation for Excellent Product Quality
  • Good Relations with Your Regulators and Community
  • Excellent Equipment Reliability and Reduced Corrective Maintenance Costs
  • Work Completed on Schedule
  • Shipments Go Out On Time and On Budget

That’s why you should choose TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis Training. TapRooT® Root Cause Analysis Training provides a guaranteed return on investment.

Guaranteed Training


Attend a course, go back to work, and use what you have learned to analyze accidents, incidents, near-misses, equipment failures, operating issues, or quality problems. If you don’t find root causes that you previously would have overlooked and if you and your management don’t agree that the corrective actions that you recommend are much more effective, just return your course materials/software and we will refund the entire course fee.

How can System Improvements make such an iron-clad guarantee? Because they have spent over 30 years developing the world’s best root cause analysis system that has been tested and reviewed by experts and used by industry leaders. Over 10,000 people each year are trained to use TapRooT® to find and fix the root causes of accidents, quality problems, and other issues. Because of this extensive worldwide user base, they know that TapRooT® will help you achieve operational excellence. Thus, they know you will be satisfied and your investment will be worthwhile.

Success Stories

Plus, they know the type of results you will get. Results like those described in the many TapRooT® User Success Stories. (CLICK HERE to see success stories submitted by TapRooT® Users.)

Are you worried that the return on investment has to be a long-term (although long-term investments are sometimes worthwhile) and will take forever to pay off?. Read this story of a FAST ROI example:

One of the students in a 5-Day TapRooT® Advanced Root Cause Team Leader Course came up to me on day 3 of the course and told me that the course had already paid for itself many times over.

I asked him what he meant. He said while we were teaching that morning, he identified a problem in some engineering work they were doing, and the costs he had avoided, (he had immediately called back to the office), totaled over $1 million dollars.

That’s a great return on investment. A $2500 course and a $1,000,000 payback. That’s about a 40000% instant ROI.

What Will Your Root Cause Analysis Investment Yield?


How much value can you achieve from your investment in great root cause analysis? Consider these issues:

  • How much would a major accident cost?
  • How much is human error costing your company?
  • If the EPA fines you $100,000 per day for an environmental permit violation, how much could it cost?
  • What is your reputation for product quality worth?
  • How much is just one day of downtime worth to your facility?

Now calculate the exceptional yield your company could achieve from its investment in great root cause analysis.

Give TapRooT® RCA a Try

I’m not asking you to take my word for how much great root cause analysis training (TapRooT® Training) will help your company. I’m just asking you to give it a try to see how much it can help your company.

Send one person to our 2-Day or 5-Day TapRooT® Courses. See how they can help solve problems using the TapRooT® Techniques. I know that you will be pleased and I’ll feel good about the lives you will save, the improvements in quality that you will make, and the improved bottom line that your company will achieve when you get more people trained.

See the types of root cause analysis training we offer:

Then see the list of upcoming public TapRooT® Training being held around the world:

 Would you like a course at your site? Then contact us at this link:

Our TapRooT® Implementation Advisors are standing by to answer your questions. Call them at 865-539-2139.

Implementation Advisors

Root Cause Analysis
Show Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *