Article

What I Could Only Learn from a Sensei

Some aspects of lean can be learned through experience, but other aspects can only be taught by an experienced sensei. Michael Balle reflects on some…

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Article

Why is Flow Easy, and Quality Hard?

Dear Gemba Coach: My lean team has become proficient at teaching flow but it's not gaining traction when it comes to quality issues. Do you…

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Article

Ask Art: Is there a balance between lean and full automation?

As a followup to his piece last month dealing with another aspect of lean and automation, Art Byrne now explores the oft-misunderstood balance between the…

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Article

Why audit standard work? And what is the best approach?

Dear Gemba Coach: Can you help me determine the best way to conduct audits of standard work (SW)? The Toyota Way Fieldbook describes a layered…

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Article

Why implement lean when it fails so often?

Dear Gemba Coach: Is it true that lean often fails? What’s the point then?

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Article

Ask Art: Does Lean Really Work Everywhere?

There's a common misconception that Lean is "just some manufacturing thing." Read why Art Byrne believes Lean can be applied any and everywhere.

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Article

Isn’t lean all about culture?

Dear Gemba Coach: Isn’t lean all about culture, really?

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Article

Ask Art: “Do lean conversions actually go smoothly, like in the books?”

Art Byrne receives many inquiries from people wondering whether lean transformations really are as smooth as they seem in books, or if the way is…

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Article

Why Are There So Many Points of View About What Lean Is?

Dear Gemba Coach: I’ve been interested in lean for over two years now, and can’t quite understand why after 20 years there are still so…

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Article

Lean Warehousing and Distribution Benefits Your Company, Customers, and Supply Chain

Lean warehousing sounds like an oxymoron. But in this interview, lean practitioner and Toyota veteran David Graham explains how lean concepts apply to warehouse and…

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outside warehouse with boxes and a van

Article

Follow-up Webinar Q&A with Jim Lancaster, Lantech CEO and author of the Work of Management

"The Real Work of Management" webinar drew an engaged audience that wanted to know more about the daily management system that CEO Jim Lancaster installed…

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Article

Seeing the Work of a Daily Management System

Daily management systems tap visual elements that expose problems, and also use obeyas as thinking spaces for reflecting on broader challenges, says Michael Balle.

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Article

5 Ways My Thinking Changed With the Help of a Lean Coach

"Coaching for development is different than being managed," writes Deborah McGee. "Lean coaching in our case was not directing an improvement swat team or teaching…

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Lexicon Term

Pitch

The amount of time needed in a production area to make one container of products. The formula for pitch is: takt time x pack-out quantity…

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Article

Tap the Power of Flow to Develop Lean Thinkers

Flow is personal--a moment of enrichment, and a mental state. It´s stretching oneself just that little bit extra, not because someone else tells us to,…

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Article

Five Missing Pieces in Your Standardized Work (Part 3 of 3)

John Shook circles back to offer an outline of how standardized work serves your Purpose, Process, and People, which can guide you as you establish…

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leaper and team leader at car manufacturing line solving a problem

Article

How Do I Change the Culture?

Dear Gemba Coach: I come from a company quite advanced in lean and I’ve joined a new firm as technical director. I’d like to apply lean…

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Article

What's different about implementing lean in a low-volume, high-variety environment?

Dear Gemba Coach: I manage a plant that makes highly engineered, low-volume products. What do I have to do differently from the high-volume guys to…

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Video

Art of Lean on Work & Waste, Part 2: Overproduction

Take a closer look at and gain an in-depth understanding of the waste overproduction with Art of Lean, Incorporated President Art Smalley.

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Article

The Art of Silent Observation

Silent observation is not as intuitive as it may sound. Andrew Quibell often meets people who think it's as simple as standing and watching the…

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