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From the Lean Lexicon 5th Edition:

Value-Stream Mapping:   A simple diagram of every step involved in the material and information flows needed to bring a product from order to delivery.  Value-stream maps can be drawn for different points in time as a way to raise consciousness of opportunities for improvement (see illustrations below). A current-state map follows a product’s path from order to delivery to determine the current conditions. A futurestate map deploys the opportunities for improvement identified in the current-state map to achieve a higher level of performance at some future point.  In some cases, it may be appropriate to draw an ideal-state map showing the opportunities for More »
Value Stream Mapping in a Product Development Context: A Q&A with John Drogosz
By: John Drogosz | April 5, 2016
Lean Product and Process Development Senior Coach John Drogosz answers countless questions about LPPD every day. Now, in his first piece for the Lean Post, he answers one of his most-asked questions: about how to create a value stream map for a PD environment. Read more. More »
Value Stream Mapping and Obeya: Key Enablers for Better Product Development
By: Katrina Appell | July 1, 2015
For an organization to be continually relevant and profitable, it needs to develop products and processes that consistently create value. But how exactly do you create the required organizational capabilities and supporting leadership behaviors? Read more. More »
Value Stream Mapping for Job Shops
By: Irani, Shahrukh | February 2, 2004
Professor Irani discusses product family matrix analysis for value-stream mapping More »
Value Stream Mapping and Management
By: Keyte, Beau | December 5, 2002
a 2002 presentation by LEI faculty member Beau Keyte to the Jacksonville APICS community More »
Apples & Oranges: Value Stream Mapping in a Low-Volume/High-Mix Environment
By: Aaron Hunt | October 27, 2015
"Making improvements using lean principles in a low volume/high mix (LVHM) manufacturing environment can be difficult, especially when trying to determine where to start," writes Aaron Hunt in his first Lean Post article. But it's not impossible. Here's how Aaron mapped the complex value streams at his LVHM organization and opened the doors to next-level productivity. More »
10 Tips for Getting the Most Value from Value Stream Mapping
By: Judy Worth | May 19, 2015
Most people see only a small amount of what is to be gained from value stream mapping. "Such an exercise can be a powerful organizational development tool," says Judy Worth, "as well as one for improving value stream performance on quality, efficiency, and safety.  " Before you embark, keep these 10 key things in mind. More »
I’ve been improving process efficiency for years with value-stream mapping, why did you write that it is misleading?
By: Michael Ballé | November 18, 2019
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach,  In your previous column you stated that value-stream mapping can be misleading. I’ve been using VSM for years to improve process efficiency – what can be wrong with that? More »
The Mythical Value Stream Manager
By: Mike Orzen | September 27, 2019
If you want to make a serious impact in your improvements, consider shifting your focus outward to a value-stream level perspective and find someone who is willing to take on the role of value stream leader, suggest Mike Orzen. More »
The Dark Side of Concurrent Engineering
By: Katrina Appell and John Drogosz | August 9, 2019
One of the fastest ways to reduce development lead time from concept to market is to work concurrently. But as product development coaches Katrina Appell and John Drogosz point out, many managers and engineers jump into concurrent engineering without the requisite understanding and planning of the work to be successful, leading them to the dreaded “Dark Side of Concurrent Engineering.  ” More »
A Matchless Learning Opportunity for Executives and Leaders
July 31, 2019
Spend 5 intense days observing and learning from operations at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, Toyota supplier Summit Polymers, and GE Appliances at our Kentucky Lean Leadership Tour. Shop-floor walks are followed by facilitated reflection and roundtable discussions, led by this outstanding team of experienced coaches. More »
VSM and Toyota Kata
By: Mike Rother | April 15, 2019
Give us 20 years and we'll learn a lot! This month's Kata SlideShare features perspectives from Mike Rother and Jeff Liker on the 20th Anniversary of the 'Learning to See' book. Useful input for anyone who utilizes VSM. More »
Learning to See Book Club Questions
April 12, 2019
Value-stream maps are the blueprints for lean transformations and Learning to See is an easy-to-read, step-by-step instruction manual that teaches this valuable tool to anyone, regardless of his or her background.  This groundbreaking workbook, which has introduced the value-stream mapping tool to thousands of people around the world, breaks down the important concepts of value-stream mapping into an easily grasped format.   To encourage you to become actively involved in the learning process, Learning to See contains a case study based on a fictional company, Acme Stamping. You begin by mapping the current state of the value stream, looking for all the sources of waste. After identifying More »
Learning a New Skill II - The Learning Curve
By: Mike Boyd | January 14, 2019
This month's 10-minute TK video (by Mike Boyd and his wife) is a clever visual description of the typical learning curve we go through in acquiring any new skill – whether it's juggling, or practicing Starter Kata for scientific thinking. Skip the ad at the end. More »
Ask Art: Does Lean Really Work in A Non-manufacturing Company?
By: Art Byrne | October 16, 2018
All companies and organizations, whether manufacturing or not, are nothing more than a group of people and a bunch of processes trying to deliver value to a set of customers, says Art Byrne. And lean principles apply to each. To become lean, every company must focus on removing the waste in their current processes in order to deliver more value to the customers. More »
VSM + TK: Navigating to your desired future
By: EMS Strategies | September 10, 2018
A short video by emsstrategies.  com to address the issue that once you've drawn a future-state map, how do you effectively move from current to future state? We need a sense of direction or challenge, which VSM can help provide, but we also need some scientific-thinking skills for navigating our way there. VSM is a way to define direction, and practicing Toyota Kata develops your skills to get there. More »
From Port to Plate: How Legal Sea Foods Is Improving Through Lean
By: Lean Leaper | August 6, 2018
Legal Sea Foods is working with LEI to help launch a movement to change everything about the way traditional restaurants work. Legal, a family business founded in 1950, with more than 30 locations, has been working with LEI for the past four years to change the way restaurants work. In everything from greeting and seating guests to re-thinking how they organize their walk-in coolers and schedule shifts, lean is having a huge impact on everything it does. More »
Lean 101 Learning Path
June 14, 2018
Articles; Forms and Templates
New to Lean Thinking & Practice and not sure where to start? Try LEI's Lean 101 Learning Path to help guide your learning. More »
An A3 Antidote to the Opiate Epidemic
By: Ryan Howard | December 15, 2016
Opiate use in America has been spiking at an alarming rate. Many healthcare organizations, such as the University of Michigan Medical School, are trying to fight the surge in use by controlling how many opioids they prescribe to their patients. Ryan Howard led a project to curb the number of opiate pills released to their community via the Medical School. Read more. More »
Making Things Better - Visual Value in Health Information Management
By: Laura Shue | October 6, 2016
Have you ever struggled to make "invisible work" visual for your leadership? Laura Shue of the University of Michigan Health System certainly has - two years ago she tackled the formidable task of making the value of her Health Information Management department visual for their leaders. How she did it is a fascinating story - read more to see for yourself! More »
Why Value-Stream Mapping is So Difficult in the Public Sector
By: Cameron Ford and Gavin Martin | June 9, 2016
Identifying value in an organization isn't the easiest task to accomplish. If you happen to work in the public sector, that fact goes double. Public-sector consultant Gavin Martin has seen his clients struggle to identify value many times - sometimes to the point that their frustration puts their lean transformation at risk of stalling. More »
It's Not All About the Data on Value-Stream Maps: An Interview with Judy Worth
By: Cameron Ford and Judy Worth | May 26, 2016
Data is a critical component of value-stream mapping. But it's not the only component you should be concerned about. All too often we find mappers getting caught up in their efforts to gather data, which can lead to overload and inaccurate mapping. LEI faculty member Judy Worth has seen this many times - here are her perspectives on the root causes and possible countermeasures. More »
Your Value Stream Map Looks a Little Different...
By: Aaron Hunt | April 26, 2016
If you think there’s a different way of applying a tool, ask, “Are we changing the tool to prevent us from changing the organization, or to better ensure change happens?” writes Aaron Hunt, Director of Performance Improvement at Washington Health System. "How do you envision the tools selected from the lean toolbox helping make the improvements?" Read more. More »
3 Tips for Accurately Assessing Your Current State
By: Drew Locher | April 7, 2016
"Just because everyone remembers to include the current state [on a value stream map] doesn’t mean it’s always done as well it could be," writes Drew Locher. And he's right. In his latest piece for the Lean Post, Drew shares three tips for avoiding common current-state problems on your value stream maps. More »
What Too Many Value Stream Maps Completely Miss
By: Drew Locher | March 8, 2016
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 piece for The Lean Post, Drew reflects on what that "missing link" is and a technique to help you include it on your next VSM. More »
Small Chart, Big Impact: How a Simple Spaghetti Chart Led to Huge Wins at Thrustmaster of Texas
By: Lean Leaper | February 4, 2016
Sometimes the simplest lean concepts can make all the difference in ensuring a successful transformation. Marine-propulsion manufacturer Thrustmaster of Texas found this out after creating a spaghetti diagram to reveal possible waste in an assembly plant. Their findings were staggering - read more. More »
Every factory needs a value stream map – even Santa's
By: Lean Leaper | December 23, 2015
Ever wondered what the world's most efficient factory is? With a takt time of less than one-third of a millisecond, we may have found our first-place winner. Clues: it's at the North Pole, has over 1.  9 billion customers, and is run by a jolly old man with a white beard and red suit. Think you know which factory we're talking about? Check out this fun VSM from Jordan Kempler of Texas and see if you're right. More »
Your Favorite Lean Posts of 2015!
By: Lean Leaper | December 2, 2015
With 2016 fast approaching, we'd like to take a step back and reflect on the most popular Lean Post articles of 2015. Did your favorite(s) make the list? More »
Lean Thinking for Quicker Police Emergency Response Time
By: Robert Downing and Erin Magee-Hall | August 5, 2015
Bob Downing and Erin Magee reflect on the results of a collaborative project they worked on last year when their company was asked by the Newport News City Council to run a process improvement (kaizen) event for the Newport News Police Department. More »
Value Stream Maps and Battle Plans - Are They Worth Nothing?
By: Chet Marchwinski and Judy Worth | March 27, 2015
“I’m reluctant to say maps are nothing, but there’s a difference between maps and mapping," Judy Worth says, paraphrasing Eisenhower’s insight that battle plans meant nothing, but PLANNING for battle was indispensable. “An awful lot of lot of the benefit that comes out of value-stream maps comes from the process of mapping with other people.  " More »
Lean Thinking and Information Flow
By: Mary Morgan | October 30, 2014
"Most of my career has been spent on making the production floor more efficient, i.  e. the delivery of a product," writes Mary Morgan. "I remember how relieved I felt when I could finally spend time learning and teaching methodologies to improve the delivery of information.  " More »
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