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This is a great article for Lean professionals. It’s easy to get too focused on the tools of Lean. As professionals, we need to understand the behaviors, grow people, and build standards. In Lean transformations, the behaviors drive the tools. Such areas to consider is coaching, employee empowerment, and problem solving.
The implementation results are surprising. IndustryWeek concluded that 74% of projects made little or no progress, with only 2% achieving world-class improvement. With employee empowerment and positive moral, the organization creates a foundation for successful problem solving. This is the bridge that connects practical solutions from theoretical tools.
I found a great new technique called kaikaku or radical change. In this implementation, we completely empty a workspace of its equipment and rebuild it with shop-floor personnel, along with company leadership, all from a blank slate. Great idea! This is considered since kaizen and 5s are applied to inefficient processes which wastes time in problem solving. Who wants more of a bad product?
In a safety arena, working faster is not the main issue. The goal is to work more efficiently. It’s the old adage of working smarted then harder. The value stream map becomes compressed with faster cycle times that focus on detail to eliminate waste and improve quality (safety). Thus, efficiency (LEAN) reduces hazards than increase them.
Gary Kapanowski – Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt – Excelsior
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