Cause and Effect -- Fishbone Diagram

Topics: Ishikawa diagram, Kaoru Ishikawa, Diagram Pages: 3 (1086 words) Published: September 16, 2006
Cause and Effect
Everyone has to make decisions on daily bases. Why? Because life is full of choices to make. Whether it is an important decision that requires careful thought and consideration or a quick decision, like what is for lunch. Wouldn't it be nice to have the knowledge about a tool or technique to help you make those important decisions? No, "what's for lunch", is not an important decision. However, changing jobs, buying a car, planning a wedding, or running a business requires critical thought and decision-making. Having the right tool or procedure can be very beneficial and time saving when making those decisions. We are going to review the Cause and Effect Diagram, better known as the Fishbone Chart, why and when you would use this method, and examples of real experiences with this diagram. Fishbone Chart

A Japanese quality control statistician, Dr. Kaoru Ishikawa, invented the fishbone diagram. It may be referred to as the cause and effect, fishbone, or Ishikawa diagram. It is an analysis tool that provides a way to look at effects and causes that contribute to those effects. This diagram has been used in Japan, to teach Total Quality Control, since World War II. The fishbone chart is great when dealing with a team approach to problem solving. This chart captures all the different ideas and helps create brainstorming. The fishbone helps to visualize the many potential causes for a specific problem. To construct a fishbone, start with stating the problem. Form the problem as a question, doing this will help with the brainstorming, as each person answers the question. Everyone needs to agree on the problem and then place is at the "head" of the fishbone. The remainder of the fishbone is made up of a horizontal line across the page, attached to several lines coming out vertically from this line. These branches or "bones" are labeled according to your problem. Once they have been labeled, begin the brainstorming of possible causes and...

References: North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural
Resources. (2002). Fishbone Diagram A Problem-Analysis
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Skymark. (2006). Cause and Effect Diagram. Retrieved
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