Stumbled on this article which was posted on Thursday (7/17/08) about the Air Force District of Washington and its efforts to improve operations.  The article lists these five areas of focus: Productivity, Assets Availability, Response Time, Safety, and Energy Conservation.

These desired effects guide improvement initiatives that contribute to the demands of the warfighter—our most important customer. In other words, linking mission and customer may encourage doing more things the right way, with the same or less effort. Every Air Force process can be improved; none is immune from critical reviews. These effects help identify opportunities that could have the greatest immediate effect for the Air Force.

Great focus on the customer and also on the fact that there is always opportunity for improvement.  They also list key elements in ensuring success in implementation:

It requires a start-to-finish process review; strong leadership buy-in; knowledgeable participants with a vested interest in an improved process; an implementation plan; and good follow-up to ensure traction.

This is all great stuff from the military.  And, in true lean fashion, they’ve got lots of acronyms: JDI (Just Do Its), RIE (Rapid Improvement Events), and AFSO21 (Air Force Smart Operations for the 21st Century)!