Article

A Lean Leap of Faith

Michael Ballé reflects on a core assumption of Lean that is often disregarded and explains why it is worth taking a lean leap of faith.

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Article

How big should my lean promotion office be?

Dear Gemba Coach: How large should my lean promotion office be if I want to achieve quickly a lean culture change?

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Article

Why are there so many different opinions about what lean management is and isn't?

Dear Gemba Coach: I have attended several lean conferences and am deeply interested in the topic, but puzzled about the diversity of viewpoints. Any advice…

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Article

Ask Art: How high is up with lean?

Art Byrne explains that continuous improvement really is continuous and that there is no limit to the “up” in lean.

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Article

Apples & Oranges: Value-Stream Mapping in a Low-Volume/High-Mix Environment

Here's how one LVHM company mapped its complex value streams — and discovered the path to next-level productivity that enabled it to transform the business…

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Article

What Too Many Value Stream Maps Completely Miss

Believe it or not, up to half of all the value-stream maps that cross Drew Locher's desk are missing something extremely important. In his first…

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Case Study

Linking Lean Thinking to the Classroom

As team members sat down to discuss hiring a new production employee, the conversation gradually centered on the need to determine if operations could be…

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Case Study

Seasoned Lean Effort Avoids "Flavor-of-the-Month" Pitfall

What comes first in a lean transformation? What comes next? Where do tools like six sigma fit? Here's an overview about how Freudenberg-NOK answered these…

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Article

5S Again and Again and Again

Dear Gemba Coach,†I've just inherited responsibility for our 5S efforts in our company. Any suggestions for how I can get the program back on track?

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Article

More Evidence That ThedaCare Rocks

LEI coach Danielle Blais reflects on her recent gemba visit to the lean healthcare organization, Appleton Medical Center in Appleton, Wisconsin—a ThedaCare hospital widely known…

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Article

When the Toyota Way Meets Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 is not a disruptive force that makes TPS irrelevant, but rather can be an enabler that builds on TPS culture and thinking, argues…

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Podcast

Handling the Heat of the Kitchen: A WLEI Podcast

Hear how LEI coaches helped a flagship restaurant's kitchen staff find and eliminate waste in their work processes, which led to better performance outcomes in…

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Handling the Heat of the Kitchen

Article

Why Is Failure Key to Lean Success?

Dear Gemba Coach: I am a LSS black belt working with a sensei to improve our performance. We conduct many workshops that get results, but…

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Article

Standardize Locally

A few weeks ago, during a day-long meeting with an executive management team, the topic of standardized work came up … again. It’s been popping up in…

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Article

Learning the Hard and Soft Skills of Lean Coaching

While lean is often associated with process improvement, error reduction, and greater efficiency in a wide range of numbers; most veterans argue that above all…

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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

GTS6 + E3 = DNA (Break the Code for Standardization, Sustainability, and Kaizen)

There's no "formula" for doing Lean well, but there are principles and practices that keep you on track. Read Tracey Richardson's (memorable) advice for leading…

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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

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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