Recent Updates

Monday, October 29, 2012 - 16:10


I have always struggled with note-taking.  Since college, I've been using the paper method for taking notes and have a 'method' for identifying different types of notes, e.g. actions, questions, ideas, etc.  But the thing that has always alluded me is 'how to capture the actions in notes' and make sure I do them and not forget.

Saturday, October 27, 2012 - 11:26


In 1987, at the University of Nebraska, my engineering career had its beginning.  As a celebration of that moment (and after I had gotten a job - which is important), I bought my first new car, a 1987 Chevrolet Camaro Sport Coupe.  Perhaps because I just graduated from engineering school, I kept a mileage log, carefully recording every mile each time I filled up with gas.  And then I got married, had two kids.  Guess what happened to the Camaro when the first child came into our lives?  Life got busy, and the mileage log was left behin

Monday, October 8, 2012 - 08:53

Turning an Email into a Task

When an email enters your inbox and it requires an action you can easily categorize it, add it to your task list and get it out of your inbox. Simply right click on the email, find the Defer tab and click 'To Task'.

Friday, September 21, 2012 - 12:17

There are many factors in deciding an organization’s success or failure.  Many are outside of their control, e.g. significant economic changes or catastrophic weather events.  However, many factors are certainly within an organizations’ control, e.g. selecting and operationalizing a successful strategy, hiring and developing the right people, and defining and executing their work efficiently and effectively.  In fact, the better the organization operates, the less the external factors affect it.

Monday, August 20, 2012 - 16:09

Stakeholder analysis provides a method for identifying those impacted or potentially impacted by a change effort (or improvement project) and their relative interest and influence on the change process.

The analysis assesses each stakeholder by their:

  • relative interest in the project,
  • relative power to impact the project, and
  • positive or negative view towards the project.

The template provides a mechanism for recording the assessment and documenting a management strategy for each stakeholder.

Sunday, April 15, 2012 - 12:00

About one third of small businesses fail in the first year and less than one half make it to their fourth year. In the U.S. economy starting in December of 2007 through June 2009, approximately 8.8 million jobs were eliminated in the ‘Great Recession’. New and existing organizations face significant challenges in surviving and providing value to their customers, assuring the economy continues to sustain a healthy place for people to work and play.

Monday, March 26, 2012 - 05:15

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Here's the latest news from the team at Ceptara (, a company dedicated to helping organizations and individuals focus and achieve their goals.

Upcoming Events

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 - 16:12

Ceptara is on Facebook. "Like" us for daily updates about what we are up to, industry news, information on our products and workshops.

Also on Twitter @ceptara.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 16:36


The Six Sigma Black Belt approaches problems using disciplined problem solving methodologies. One such approach called DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control) focuses on reducing process variation and defects. Regardless of what approach is used, the problem Definition and Measurement phases are most critical to avoid foolish effort in Analysis, Improvement and Control resulting in much pain by fixing the wrong problem.

DMAIC Refresher

For those who are not familiar or need a refresher, here is a summary of the DMAIC process steps.