Knowledge Center: Columns (824)

Try These Three Deliberate Practices of Lean Coaching
By: Dan Prock | June 15, 2018
Columns
A lean coach doesn’t do PDCA; she or he has three deliberate practices that keep the PDCA gear rolling with a check, adjustment, new purpose and plan to do for kaizen experiments. A lean coach using these three deliberate practices is a perpetual motion machine of sustainable continuous improvement. More »
Surviving CEO Change, Evolving Through Culture and Being a Humble Leader
By: Kiame Mahaniah, MD and John Y. Shook | June 13, 2018
Columns
Dr. Mahaniah was kind enough to sit down with LEI’s Chairman, John Shook to talk about growing up in different cultures, from the Congonese to the Quakers, and how he became a CEO in an organization trying to become lean, and helped keep that movement going. More »
Ask Art: Why Do People Reject Proof that Lean Works?
By: Art Byrne | June 11, 2018
Columns
Despite compelling proof, most people will find a way to doubt the power of lean to improve their particular work, shares Art Byrne, who argues that it is critical to press forward despite this natural and inevitably resistance. More »
Practical, Actionable Tips for Re-Engaging People with a Suggestion System, Part 2
By: Steve Ansuini | June 8, 2018
Columns
Companies, responding to surveys showing that a troubling number of people are disengaged at work, respond with perks like nap pods, rock walls, and free food. Suggestions systems get overlooked. That’s too bad because the whole point of a system done correctly is engagement. Here are some real-world tips on starting and sustaining a system from an experienced lean practitioner. More »
Practical Tips for Re-Engaging People with a Suggestion System
By: Steve Ansuini | June 7, 2018
Columns
Companies, responding to surveys showing that a troubling number of people are disengaged at work, respond with perks like nap pods, rock walls, and free food. Suggestions systems get overlooked. That’s too bad because the whole point of a system done correctly is higher engagement. Here are some real-world tips on starting and sustaining a system from an experienced lean practitioner. More »
What Are the Most Valuable Ways You Learned Lean?
By: Deborah McGee | June 6, 2018
Columns
Each approach to learning lean brings value into my work and improves my capabilities. There isn’t one way (for me) to get there. Each situation called for a different approach, and each approach to learning showed me a different dimension, making lean thinking more accessible, deepening my understanding and developing my practice, says Deb McGee. More »
JoePa and Other Biases to Avoid
By: Mark Reich | June 5, 2018
Columns
A recent viewing of the biographical film Paterno led LEI Senior Coach Mark Reich to reflect on the way many of us let biases filter our view of the facts More »
The Formula for a Successful Management System: LB * OS = MS
By: Jim Morgan | May 31, 2018
Columns
In order to reap the benefits of an effective management system it is important that the operating system and leadership behaviors be aligned and consistent, argues Jim Morgan. More »
Are You Managing By The Right Numbers?
By: Tracey Richardson | May 30, 2018
Columns
Knowing the key metrics to track will help you and your team start your learning journey, says Tracey Richardson. She shares the key figures that provide a foundation for growth and discovery. More »
Coaching the Uncoachable Comes Down to Rock Paper and Scissors
By: Dan Prock | May 29, 2018
Columns
Breaking out of a thinking cycle that is already too full to learn anything can be found in thinking about the game of rock, paper, and scissors, says lean coach Dan Prock. More »
Stability Before Innovation
By: James P. Womack | May 24, 2018
Columns
Given its foundational strengths of stable and robust product development, production, supplier development, and general management system, Toyota is well poised to deliver innovative solutions to primary challenges facing all automakers. It's a lesson for any company seeking innovation, says Jim Womack. More »
Mindfulness and Leading with Respect
By: Mike Orzen and John Y. Shook | May 23, 2018
Columns
Mindfulness is both more essential today than ever, and a foundation for organizational lean excellence. Here John Shook and Mike Orzen explore this theme. “The more lean thinking you do, the more mindfulness you’ll experience, and the more mindfulness you create, the more presence you’ll create…and the more lean thinking you’ll do.  ” More »
Why 'Yes Chef!' Is No Longer the Answer
By: Richard Vellante | May 22, 2018
Columns
In order to meet the changing demands of today's restaurants, chefs must learn to evolve from old-school methods of the "brigade system" and learn to be more mindful, holistic, and ask better questions, say Legal Seafoods Executive Chef Rich Vellante More »
Expanding Our Perspective on Lean, Part 3: Lean is a Practice in Search of a Language
By: Joanna McGuffey and Thomas Richert | May 18, 2018
Columns
To explore the idea that there may be other angles for understanding lean management than business or analytical perspectives, a group of lean management practitioners met with artists. Here’s what surprised them. More »
How to Create a Lean Management Book Club that Executives Will Actually Attend
By: Chet Marchwinski | May 16, 2018
Columns
At the start of a lean transformation, a continuous improvement leader convinced her division president that a book club would be a good way to introduce leaders to lean concepts. Here’s what she did to make the club interesting and valuable for its busy participants, including what worked and what didn’t. More »
Postcard from Nashville
By: John Y. Shook | May 15, 2018
Columns
John Shook looks back at the key theme of LEI's Nashville summit on the theme of how to be better employees. More »
Lean Roundup: Respect for People
By: Tom Ehrenfeld | May 14, 2018
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Respect for People is one of the most abstract and yet most concrete tenets of lean, a guiding principle that informs how people work, coach, and lead. This roundup of writings reveals a wealth of perspectives on how lean thinkers convert this ideal into tangible ways of thinking and acting. More »
Finding a Lean Cure that Respects the Health of Healthcare Workers
By: Eric Buehrens | May 10, 2018
Columns
In his prognosis of the health care system, LEI CEO Eric Buehrens says we need to improve the work to remove waste and create value; and be advocates for enough “social heijunka” to ensure that resources going to that sector don’t impoverish frontline workers across our society. More »
Expanding Our Perspective on Lean Management, Part 2: Lean has its Roots in Spirituality
By: Joanna McGuffey and Thomas Richert | May 8, 2018
Columns
To explore the idea that there may be other angles for understanding lean management than business or analytical perspectives, a group of lean management practitioners met with artists. Here’s what surprised them. More »
Ask Art: Am I Showing Respect for People by Asking for Fast Action?
By: Art Byrne | May 7, 2018
Columns
Lean is a “learn by doing” exercise not a classroom training approach. The best method I know to achieve this is through a sustained high level of kaizen activity. You are trying to create a learning environment where everyone is constantly learning and contributing to the organization. Every time an improvement is made, learning occurs. The faster you go the more learning can occur. More »
Mapping a Reading List to Lean
By: Jim Benson | May 4, 2018
Columns
We humans want to see what is happening, understand how we and our colleagues best collaborate, solve problems, make good decisions, and have an insatiable desire to be better. This Lean reading list by Jim Benson steps outside the obvious texts and provides offerings with a foundation for these critical skills. More »
Respect the Customer By Respecting Your Worker
By: Mark Reich | May 3, 2018
Columns
Lean provides us with a different approach to this vicious cycle. Build a management system in your company that allows employees to make the best decisions for the customer (end user and next process). This shows respect for your people. More »
Out of Fertile "Pre-Lean" Soil Bloom Lean Leaders
By: Jacob Stoller | May 1, 2018
Columns
A new generation of leaders varies in individual styles but shares common beliefs that create a foundation for successful lean transformations, collectively identified here as “pre-lean thinking.  ” More »
The Road to Production Hell is Paved with Lack of LPPD
By: Jim Morgan | April 27, 2018
Columns
The real work of companies like Tesla who face stupendous challenges in launching a product should have happened long before production commenced, says Jim Morgan, noting that the time for urgency, the time for bringing your sleeping bag to work is during development – not in production. More »
The Quiet Factory
By: Matthew Savas | April 25, 2018
Columns
Could noise be considered another waste to be reduced in the system? Matt Savas ponders the implications of a Toyota factory that has set a goal of lowering the decibel level to help with a key strategic goal. More »
Fighting Poverty with Lean Product & Process Design at MIT D-Lab
By: Lean Leaper | April 24, 2018
Columns
D-Lab at MIT is using lean product and process design to help solve problems in the developing world, and are truly making the world a better place for all those involved More »
Learning to Teach the Soft Side of Lean
By: Tracey Richardson | April 23, 2018
Columns
If there’s one common theme among virtually any failed effort, it boils to a failure to engage people in the purpose, says Tracey Richardson. That's why before any industry or functional area attempts (beyond manufacturing) to learn lean thinking, the people leading the work must gain the mutual trust and respect from your workers by walking the walk. More »
Rethinking the Model Line
By: James P. Womack | April 19, 2018
Columns
The model line, once seen as the key to helping organizations learn and share lean thinking, has served a critical purpose, says Jim Womack: to raise awareness of fundamental management problems. More »
Seeing the Work of a Daily Management System
By: Michael Ballé | April 18, 2018
Columns
Daily management systems tap visual elements that expose problems, and also use obeyas as thinking spaces for reflecting on broader challenges, says Michael Balle. More »
Lean Management Meets Artificial intelligence, Machine Learning, the Internet of All Things
By: Andrew Quibell | April 16, 2018
Columns
What part, if any, will lean principles – or humans – play in a manufacturing future of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and the internet of things? Andrew Quibell uses text and graphics as a crystal ball to illuminate 7 benefits of the "lights-out" factory. More »
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