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A3s (18) Show All »
Welcome to the MTL A3 Dojo
By: Shook, John | February 9, 2011
A3s; Columns
Welcome to this MTL-mini site within www.  lean.  org a destination for thought leadership in lean management in general, "managing to learn" and the A3 process in particular.  The goal of this site is to narrow the gap between reading about how to create an A3 and actually doing A3 management. This site within a site is meant to be a shared space for A3 thinking, a place for you to engage with others on the nitty-gritty daily challenges of your specific problems. Even for you to create an A3 and own it in the process.  This mini-site emerged out More »
Detailed A3 Template (from Managing to Learn)
By: Shook, John | July 19, 2010
A3s; Forms and Templates
A PDF of the A3 template provided in the book Managing to Learn. More »
Audio (18) Show All »
The Gold Mine (Audiobook - CD)
By: Freddy Ballé and Michael Ballé | November 9, 2010
Audio; Books
An unabridged audio version of The Gold Mine: A Novel of Lean Turnaround, a Shingo Research Prize recipient in 2006.    More »
St. Joseph Health System: Taking it to the next level
October 7, 2010
Audio; Images
Mary Kingston, Vice President for Performance Improvement at St. Joseph’s Hospital, talks about the first three years of the lean journey at St. Joseph's in California. She is interviewed (available in audio and text format) by the Association for Manufacturing Excellence in advance of their November conference, where St. Joseph's will be presenting.  From the interview:"One of the things I thought was really intriguing was the whole idea of capturing knowledge which I really hadn't thought about. We use A3 Thinking and our last box is called insights. What I've learned through this conference is that we've been very superficial More »
Case Studies (39) Show All »
Sustain Your Lean Business System with a “Golden Triangle”
By: Marchwinski, Chet | April 1, 2014
When medical device maker Phase 2 fought off an overseas challenge by meeting the global price, margins took a big hit. With help from customer Medtronic Advanced Energy, the company rebuilt margins by lifting its lean operating system to a higher level and keeping it there with a "golden triangle" of sustainability. More »
Cultivating a Lean Problem-Solving Culture at O.C. Tanner
By: Bartholomew, Doug | January 22, 2014
O.  C. Tanner is in the appreciation business. It develops employee reward and recognition programs and manufactures a wide variety of emblems, rings, trophies, and other custom products that complement the programs. And if you are in the appreciation business, you have to live it in your own workplace. For O.  C. Tanner that meant a lean transformation had to show the company appreciated and wanted people’s problem-solving ideas. Here’s a report on that effort, including what worked and what didn’t. More »
Columns (263) Show All »
Our Roundup of Upcoming Lean Events
By: Lex Schroeder | September 2, 2014
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How Lean Tools Support the Principle of Respect (Part 2)
By: Lean Leaper | August 29, 2014
We first met Andy Ward when he was struggling to save his plant from closure in The Lean Manager. Since then he's helped lead a lean transformation; and recently, in Lead With Respect, play sensei to Southcape Software CEO Jane Delaney as she aims to transform her people through the use of lean methods and practice. In this interview Ward shares what he has learned. More »
eLetters (342) Show All »
The Essence of Developing People and Yourself
By: John Shook | August 21, 2014
Columns; eLetters
Jane Delaney is the CEO of a medium sized software company in the UK. As her company faces crisis upon crisis she finds herself forced to reexamine everything. Herself. Her role as a leader. Her own learning throughout a career that has led her to this point successfully. As she faces the fact that she has much more to learn in order to solve her company’s messy problems, Delaney realizes that the nature of the learning she needs has more to do with her than with the company. Ouch – company crisis becomes personal crisis. More »
I fail to see the difference between hoshin kanri and the strategic planning we used to do. What am I missing?
By: Ballé, Michael | August 18, 2014
Columns; eLetters
My boss has hired a consultant to take us through the Hoshin Kanri process. So far, I fail to see the difference with the strategic planning we used to do. What am I missing? More »
Forms and Templates (19) Show All »
Problem Definition Worksheet
By: Lean Transformations Group | June 17, 2013
In order to continuously improve, you must be able to find problems in order to solve them.  Once you have found a problem, the first step you must take is to make sure you have properly defined the problem.  One way to look at problems (i.  e.  , gaps) is to think in terms of standards. A gap can exist between current performance and an established standard or a new standard that you are attempting to achieve. A problem also can be unwanted variation in performance even when average performance appears acceptable. When even a single out-of-specification event is a More »
Root Cause Template
By: Shook, John and David Verble | June 13, 2013
When trying to solve a problem, you want to identify underlying causes, which will help you to prevent fires rather than just extinguish them. By identifying the underlying causes down to the root causes, you can reduce the likelihood that a given problem will recur.  The most common root-cause analysis technique in lean is the "Five Why's.  " This is practice of asking why repeatedly whenever a problem is encountered in order to get beyond the obvious symptoms to discover the root cause.  For instance, Taiichi Ohno gives this example about a machine that stopped working (Ohno 1988, p. 17):Why did More »
Software (1)
eVSM v7 - Electronic Value-Stream Mapping
March 10, 2014
Accessories; Software; Value-Stream Maps
Walking the shop or office floor with a paper and pencil to collect data and observe actual conditions is how value-stream mapping (VSM) is done. But for a long time, members of the Lean Community have been sharing these hand-drawn maps by creating their own electronic templates from scratch in various software programs. eVSM makes the process of turning hand-drawn maps into electronic ones easier and faster.  As a companion – not a substitute – to paper-and-pencil mapping, the software allows lean practitioners to easily create, modify, and disseminate electronic value-stream maps. More »
Videos and Webinars (37) Show All »
Kaizen vs. the Suggestion Box
October 25, 2012
Mark Graban’s new book, Healthcare Kaizen (Productivity Press), co-authored with Joe Swartz, has lots of examples and practical advice for involving front-line staff with installing and sustaining a continuous improvement system. More »
Lean Accounting Award Winner
By: Chet Marchwinski | October 25, 2012
Clay Moerland, a graduate assistant at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, who won the 2012 Excellence in Lean Accounting Student Award, describes his winning project, a lean accounting simulation that he worked on with professors. The award is sponsored annually by Lean Enterprise Institute (LEI).  Lean Accounting Training Learn more about how to make the necessary changes in finance needed to support a lean transformation at LEI’s Lean Accounting Workshop.    More »
Articles (769) Show All »
Autoliv: Giving Power to the People
By: Bartholomew, Doug | June 3, 2014
A case study looks at how Autoliv developed and sustained a lean-problem solving culture and how this global company shares best practices. More »
Leadership Q&A: Thomas Hartman, Senior Director, Autoliv Americas
By: Bartholomew, Doug | June 3, 2014
From the LEI senior executive series on Lean LeadershipAutoliv’s Thomas Hartman describes the development of a lean problem solving culture, from early instruction by Toyota to propagating best practices among facilities. More »
Books (184) Show All »
Lead With Respect: A Novel of Lean Practice
By: Michael Ballé and Freddy Ballé | July 28, 2014
"Lead With Respect is a terrific book that puts the elements of genuine motivation into a broader context and helps leaders translate those principles into action.  "—Daniel H. Pink, author of TO SELL IS HUMAN and DRIVE"The Ballé books are a great way to get started or to speed up your pace of transformation, personal and organizational.  "—Jim Womack, Founder of Lean Enterprise InstituteIn their new business novel Lead With Respect, authors Michael and Freddy Ballé reveal the true power of lean: developing people through a rigorous application of proven tools and methods. And, in the process, creating the only sustainable source of competitive advantage—a culture More »
Lead With Respect: A Novel of Lean Practice
By: Michael Ballé and Freddy Ballé | July 28, 2014
"Lead With Respect is a terrific book that puts the elements of genuine motivation into a broader context and helps leaders translate those principles into action.  "—Daniel H. Pink, author of TO SELL IS HUMAN and DRIVE"The Ballé books are a great way to get started or to speed up your pace of transformation, personal and organizational.  "—Jim Womack, Founder of Lean Enterprise InstituteIn their new business novel Lead With Respect, authors Michael and Freddy Ballé reveal the true power of lean: developing people through a rigorous application of proven tools and methods. And, in the process, creating the only sustainable source of competitive advantage—a culture More »
Charts, Graphs and Diagrams (4) Show All »
Begin from Need
October 28, 2010
"Begin from need" is attributed Taiichi Ohno, a key developer of the Toyota Production System. It means, as shown on these charts, what does the customer (the organization, the worker, the gemba) need right now? It's  another way of articulating the principle of PDCA, plan-do-check-act.    It helps us begin problem solving by grasping the situation, and avoid jumping to conclusions. More »
Shingo Prize Transformation Model
By: Shingo Prize | December 8, 2009
A graphic of the Shingo Prize model for principle-centered operational excellence. More »
Events (12) Show All »
2014 Transformation Summit
October 21, 2013
March 5-6, 2014 - Orlando, Florida. Improve the work, develop the people - the building blocks for continuous innovation. More »
2013 Transformation Summit Content
March 28, 2013
Events; Videos and Webinars
We recorded all of the keynote, plenary, and breakout sessions as well as seven of the learning sessions conducted at the 2013 Lean Transformation Summit. Access to this Lean Transformation Summit Community website is now available for purchase. More »
Presentations (49) Show All »
KATA CASE EXAMPLE - GKN SINTER METALS
By: By Wayne Meyer | July 1, 2014
This month's video is a case example of deploying the Improvement Kata & Coaching Kata. Wayne Meyer illustrates GKN's application, explains how to get an organization to change and provides highly-useful lessons learned. Be sure to watch the final Q&A portion of the video for extra insights. More »
Lean Startup: From Toyota City to Fremont to You
By: Shook, John | February 10, 2014
Speaking at the 2013 Lean Startup Conference, John Shook, CEO of the Lean Enterprise Institute, used his slides to give the audience some background on lean’s development and its key concepts. But he also noted that whether a company is a startup or an established company, lean thinking and practice means:Engage Everyone in Problem Finding and Continuous ExperimentationGive Everyone Permission to Fail and Ability to Succeed More »
Value-Stream Maps (8) Show All »
Value-Stream Map Zones (from Perfecting Patient Journeys)
By: Lean Transformations Group | January 29, 2013
Developing a current-state map creates a common understanding of how things really work today in the value stream (not necessarily what the documentation says or some might believe) so that the stakeholders can work together to identify and address problems and make improvements. Remember, see together, learn together, act together.  All value-stream maps are laid out in a horizontal format. They capture major categories or zones of fact finding. We find it helpful to think about value-stream maps in terms of the following six zones: customer, supplier, processes, information flow, process data, and a timeline and summary.  Perfecting Patient Journeys, More »
Seeing the Whole Value Stream (Maps from Applying Value-Stream Analysis to Retailing — The Tesco Case)
By: Jones, Dan and David Brunt | October 25, 2011
Full size maps from the essay "Applying Value-Stream Analysis to Retailing — The Tesco Case" in Seeing the Whole Value Stream More »
Workshops (52) Show All »
5S - Visual Workplace
5S methodology helps organizations achieve more consistent operational results through maintaining an orderly workplace. This workshop will introduce you to the 5S methodology and help you learn basic implementation steps including evaluation and audit. More »
A Factory of One: Applying Lean Thinking to Improve Your Personal Performance
As lean moves out of the "tool age," leaders—managers, directors, executives— must invest more time in the critical work of lean leadership: going to the gemba to support value creators in their improvement work and coaching and mentoring teams to develop their problem solving capabilities. This ensures that all organizational processes continuously add value to customers. More »