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Fishbone Diagram

The fishbone diagram (a.k.a. cause and effect diagram, a.k.a. Ishikawa Diagram) is a way of linking the causes of a problem to the observed effect.

The diagram groups the causes in categories along the spine. The distinctive shape of the tool gives the fishbone diagram its name.

This is one of the most commonly used of the problem solving tools, and in fact is one of the primary seven quality tools.

The fishbone diagram is a fairly easy tool to use, and can be learned quickly, making it an outstanding tool for kaizen teams to use when making improvements.

Learn more and watch a video in our cause and effect diagram entry in our Lean Encyclopedia.

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