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It's All About the Mindset on Gemba Walks
By: Darren Walsh | August 17, 2017
Darren Walsh believes that there are few things more critical to a successful gemba walk than the right mindset. Do you have the right one when you Go and See? Read more and find out. More »
From the Forums: SHOULD You Sweat the Small Stuff on Gemba Walks?
By: Lean Leaper | August 16, 2017
It's inevitable that as we Go and See, we'll notice many small, barely-noticeable mistakes happening in the work. But how to handle those mistakes? They may be small, but they're still mistakes - and you don't want to be seen as ignoring them. Join the discussion in the comments section! More »
How Obeya Improved Our Product Development Efforts
By: Andy Houk | August 15, 2017
As a followup to John Drogosz's piece on the stages of obeya from last week, Andy Houk, a client of John's at TechnipFMC, discusses how an obeya room that John helped them set up affects their work today. More »
Why Visualize?
By: Michael Ballè | August 14, 2017
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach, Why do you insist so much on visualizing information? More »
Yes, Lean is a Strategy!!!
By: Orest (Orry) Fiume | August 10, 2017
Is lean a strategy? Absolutely YES, says lean author and thinker Orry Fiume. Replying to feedback on his new book, Orry says that strategy is about deciding how to win; and lean is about how to win with a focus on both creating more value for your customers and doing so with the best utilization of the resources at hand, i.  e. with the least amount of waste. More »
The Art of Silent Observation
By: Andrew Quibell | August 9, 2017
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 work in silence. But there's much more to it than that - learn more in his new sketch and animation. More »
Ask Art: Is there a balance between lean and full automation?
By: Art Byrne | August 8, 2017
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 two operating methods. More »
Why do lean management experts differ on how to apply lean principles?
By: Michael Ballè | August 7, 2017
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach I’ve worked with several managers who worked at Toyota or Toyota suppliers who were considered experts in the company’s management and production systems. Each seemed to have a different approach to applying lean principles. What’s going on? Why aren’t they all on the same page? More »
Lean Transformation: "Shock and Awe" vs. "Slow and Grow"
By: Art Byrne and Dan Markovitz | August 3, 2017
When leading a lean transformation, is it better to use the "shock and awe" method or the "low and slow" method? It may not even be that simple. Dan Markowitz and Art Byrne discuss. More »
Developing Your Obeya, Stage-by-Stage
By: John Drogosz | August 2, 2017
In his years as a LPPD coach, John Drogosz has seen that "most teams do go through several stages of evolution before obeya becomes an embedded ritual.  " Find out what they are. More »
When to Pull the Andon
By: Kelly Moore | August 1, 2017
Lost luggage is a traveler's nightmare. But for Kelly Moore, the nightmare got worse when her airline's baggage attendant couldn't pull the andon -- an action that could have fixed the problem on the spot. Kelly now reflects on this incident and how it made her reconsider the efficacy of her organization's andon systems. More »
Any advice for how to implement real pull across the company?
By: Ballé, Michael | July 31, 2017
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach, My boss, the operations VP, has asked me to implement a pull system across the whole company. I’ve practiced lean for many years and am a division lean officer, but not fully comfortable about real pull – would you have any advice? More »
The "Dimensions" of Lean
By: Lean Leaper | July 27, 2017
In this exclusive interview from the 2017 Lean Transformation Summit, LEI Director of Education Karen Gaudet shares her own take on the ages-old question, "Why do so many lean transformations fail?" More »
Riding the Goodyear Wheel to Innovation Excellence
By: Norbert Majerus | July 26, 2017
Norbert Majerus of Goodyear shares the Womack and Jones-inspired model that helped his company overhaul its product development operations. More »
Assessing Problem Solving Capability in Job Candidates: A True Account
By: Derrick Redding | July 25, 2017
Last month, Derrick Redding shared three questions that you can ask job candidates to assess their problem-solving capacity. As a followup, he is now sharing a real-life example of a time when these questions helped him do just that - without ever once talking about work. Read more. More »
5 Steps to Empowering Your Team
By: Andrew Quibell | July 20, 2017
Empowering an entire team can seem daunting, but it doesn't have to be. You just need a good background understanding of empowerment and a simple, yet effective, model for making it happen. Andrew Quibell provides both in his newest sketches and animation, today on the Lean Post. More »
Getting Religious About Problem Solving
By: Lean Leaper | July 19, 2017
Have you ever heard of a lean transformation guided by scriptures? The people at LifeWayChristian Resources' distribution center in Tennessee have! Whenever possible, they use passages from the Bible to exemplify the principles in their lean training materials. Find out how. More »
Uncovering Lean’s Soul
By: Dr. John R. Ehrenfeld | July 18, 2017
Dr. John Ehrenfeld argues that lean as a different way of being is still woefully undervalued in lean transformations today. Here is his take on this misconception and the neuroscience behind how to ACTUALLY think about lean. More »
Why don't you use plain English instead of confusing Japanese terms such as “monozukuri” or “hitozukuri”?
By: Ballé, Michael | July 17, 2017
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach, Why do you keep using confusing Japanese terms such as “monozukuri” or “hitozukuri” rather than plain English? Isn’t that what professionals do when they want to obfuscate and befuddle clients? More »
The Story of an Error
By: Orest (Orry) Fiume | July 13, 2017
As a followup to his popular article from earlier this summer about lean profit-sharing plans, Orry Fiume delves deeper. He shares a booklet that McKesson & Robbins Inc. once used to educate its employees on practices that hurt profits (and by extension, the sharing plans that distribute said profits). Read more. More »
Ask Art: Is there a conflict between automation/IT and lean?
By: Art Byrne | July 12, 2017
An oft-heard debate in lean circles revolves around automation and IT. Do IT/automation complement lean? Or do they clash with it? Art Byrne explores this further. More »
Book Value: The Mental ABC's of Pitching
By: John Y. Shook | July 11, 2017
"With both the All-Star Game and our Lean Coaching Summit approaching, I got to thinking about ways that non-lean books offer insights into coaching and mastery," writes LEI Chairman and CEO John Shook. Read more More »
Our hoshin plan failed. What do we do now?
By: Ballé, Michael | July 11, 2017
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach, How do we deal with hoshin kanri when things don’t work out as planned? More »
The Work of Management: A Daily Path to Sustainable Improvement
By: Jim Lancaster | July 6, 2017
Lancaster tells an inspiring and practical business story in his new book, The Work of Management (2017, Lean Enterprise Institute). It’s a close-up, candid look at Lancaster’s personal transformation as a leader. It’s also a practical, in-depth, business case study of Lantech’s lean transformation, relapse, and comeback that American manufacturing – and other industries -- can use to profitably transform themselves. More »
Happy Fourth of July from All of Us at LEI!
By: Cameron Ford | July 4, 2017
The Lean Post is taking a break this week to celebrate the anniversary of America's independence from Great Britain. Join us next week for more insightful content on lean thinking and practice! More »
You can do a lot by doing a few things
By: Leslie Barker | June 29, 2017
"Developing a good strategy and actually executing it is really hard," writes Leslie Barker. "What I didn’t fully realize was how powerful just a little knowledge is along with a commitment to do things differently.  " Read Leslie's gripping story of the role these two things play in her day-to-day work. More »
“Do I have to be a team leader for the rest of my life?"
By: John Y. Shook | June 28, 2017
In this reprint of his latest e-letter, LEI Chairman and CEO John Shook reflects on the powerful lessons in the new book, "The Work of Management," by Jim Lancaster. More »
“Do I have to be team leader for the rest of my life?"
By: John Shook | June 27, 2017
Columns; eLetters
At his talk at the Lean Transformation Summit earlier this year, and at conferences since then, including Industry Week and Shingo, Lantech CEO Jim Lancaster shared these words, expressing a Groundhog Day-like despair at having to solve the same problems on a daily basis (“Didn’t we do this yesterday?”). As he voiced his anguish, I looked out and saw a good 600 of the 660 listeners looking down at their feet in a shared response, his comment the awakening whap of a “Zen stick” (as Dan Prock would say, see PS below) inspiring each listener to reflect, “Yes, that’s me!” More »
Engagement and Elephants: How Lean Changed the San Diego Zoo
By: Lean Leaper | June 27, 2017
In this exclusive video from the 2017 Lean Transformation Summit, Director of Performance Improvement Jeff Foster dishes on some of his experiences implementing lean at the San Diego Zoo. More »
Will a real andon system bring the factory to a full stop?
By: Ballé, Michael | June 26, 2017
Columns; eLetters
Dear Gemba Coach, What would happen if we practiced andon for real – wouldn’t the factory simply stop? More »
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