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Lean in One Drawing

by Dave LaHote
February 15, 2017

Lean in One Drawing

by Dave LaHote
February 15, 2017 | Comments (15)
One of the challenges in getting results from lean thinking is to understand lean as a system rather than just a collection of tools.  Many organizations start applying lean tools in an effort to improve efficiency.  In the short term, this method of application can harvest some low-hanging fruit as waste is everywhere.
 
However, lean has the power to fundamentally change an organization if we see it as a system. When I teach workshops or speak to small groups I attempt to demonstrate this in one flipchart drawing. This lean in one drawing illustrates how the tools work together with a management system and philosophy designed to support workers and help them be successful in their jobs. Recently, I turned my hand-drawn flip chart into a whiteboard video.  Here is my concept of thinking about lean as a system and to demonstrate the linkage between lean tools and how the system can create organizational advantage.

So, watch my video and then pick one of your key processes and ask yourself to what extent you have all the pieces of the system in place as I have described. I’ll bet you'll have some missing connections that you can focus on improving. Share the video with others to help your organization better understand lean as a system and use it to diagnose your own important processes to judge how well you are doing at creating basic stability.
The views expressed in this post do not necessarily represent the views or policies of The Lean Enterprise Institute.
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15 Comments | Post a Comment
Estuardo February 15, 2017

excellent video, thanks!

What you recommend when people reach out your limit in solving problems?



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David LaHote February 15, 2017
1 Person AGREES with this reply

I have found that people are natural problem solvers.  In organizations the key is to solve problems at the approprite level.  Workers need to solve problems associated with their work with a continuous improvement mentality always making things a little better.  Supervisors need to be involved on larger issues that go beyond the standard work of the worker. Managers need to be looking at issues that cut across departments or organizational boundries.  My advice is solve problems as close to the source of the problem as possible.  Good luck and thanks for the comments.

 



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Dennis February 15, 2017
1 Person AGREES with this reply

Hi Dave,  Thank you for the thoughts on lean as a system.  It is right on target.  I interface with many people at all levels that have been "Lean trained" only to find out they have been instructed on the tools but not on the whole system or how to use the tools together or what the appropriate tool(s) are for the task at hand.  How can I get a copy of the final drawing from your video?  I would like to use it in educating the staff at my work in Lean as a system if that is ok with you.  IF it is ok please send pdf to dcoates@bidplymouth.org.  Thanks again for the video.  Dennis



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David LaHote February 15, 2017

Thanks for the comments Dennis.  A Pdf is on it's way to you. I hope it helps.

Dave



manik February 16, 2017

Hi David,

 

Nicely explained concept of lean as a system.

Would appreciate if you could email me pdf of full page drawing explaining the concept.

 

Warm regards,

Manik



Reply »

David LaHote February 16, 2017

Thank you Manik.  If you send me your email address I'll send you a Pdf of the drawing.

Dave



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Frank February 16, 2017

David, Thank you for the simple illustration of what a Lean System looks like at the shop floor to drive stability. I shared your videos with my team and leaders throughout our organization since we're putting a much greater effort in creating model areas such as you described. Much Thanks!

 



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David LaHote February 16, 2017

Thank you for your comments Frank.  One of the settings I commonly teach in is healthcare.  When I do my drawing in that setting I use the story of blood pressure monitoring equipment in the Emergency Department not working and explain what a closed loop system with standards (equipment always available and working) visual control, andon and response sytem with problem solving could look like for that situation.  My point is we need this basic stability thinking everywhere from the shop floor to the office in all types of organizations.  I'm glad you are finding the video helpful.

Best Regards,

Dave



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Brian February 16, 2017

I would also be interested in a copy of the final drawing.

 

leanbriancarroll@gmail.com



Reply »

Henry Parente February 17, 2017

I love it!  Simple yet elegant way of illustrating Lean as a system.  I will be sharing this with the leaders at our hospital.  Can I get a copy of the pdf?

Great Work!

Henry

hjparente@cmh.edu



Reply »

Kelley February 17, 2017

This is a great video in concept and presentation. Thanks for sharing.

 

I would also appreciate a pdf copy of the drawing. Thank you!

kelley.brandt@bristowgroup.com



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Jeff Fuchs February 20, 2017

Excellent video, Dave! Very concise, accurate, engaging video that explains a lean system. Kudos for presenting this in a neutral way that people from all industries can relate to well! I will be passing this link along to many!



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David LaHote February 20, 2017

Thanks for the kind comments Jeff

Dave



Reply »

Dan February 20, 2017

Thanks Dave. You show in a very simple and concise way an overview of the system requirements for lean. Spot on.

    I'd love to have a copy of your finished drawing to share if you don't mind.

 

My email is danbrown@leansixs.com

 

Thanks,

  Dan



Reply »

Jeanne February 21, 2017

Hi, Dave,

Thanks very much for this great mini-teach. Very concise and easy to follow.



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