Service differs from manufacturing:

•           the service agent is involved in production
•           the customer is involved in production
•           nothing is ‘stored’; service happens at the moment of transaction
•           customers exhibit a variety of demands.

So we should not treat service and manufacturing organisations as alike when it comes to improving what they do.

Furthermore, not all service organisations are the same. Some services need to happen at the point of transaction, some cannot – some require a flow of work that begins with the first transaction. So we should be careful to understand what type of service we are working in if we want to improve it, we should not assume that improvement methods are universal, we should ensure that we understand what type of problem we are solving.