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by LSSU Admin - Friday, 31 July 2020, 8:42 PM
Retrieved from: Lean Blog
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Thanks as always to Ryan McCormick for this… Healthcare — Creating Value for Patients Health systems with a culture of improvement find their capacity for solving problems useful during the pandemic. How do you talk to patients about treatment or results when they don't have a phone?  ER doctors gave cellphones to their patients.  The results […]

The post Operational Excellence Mixtape: July 31, 2020 appeared first on Lean Blog.

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by LSSU Admin - Friday, 31 July 2020, 6:49 PM
Retrieved from: Old Lean Dude
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I’ve often referred to frontline supervision as “most difficult job in the organization.” What do you think? And, by the way, how many practices and behaviors can you name that are not conducive to TPS?
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by LSSU Admin - Thursday, 30 July 2020, 6:13 PM
Retrieved from: Lean Blog
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Yesterday's podcast is admittedly very long (almost two hours), but it's a very important topic and I appreciate the opportunity to have had this discussion with  Christopher D. Chapman, and Dr. Valeria Sinclair-Chapman. One topic that we got into toward the very end of the podcast was a question of how (and why?) should we […]

The post Podcast Clip: How Can We Increase Diversity at Lean Events? appeared first on Lean Blog.

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by LSSU Admin - Wednesday, 29 July 2020, 5:54 PM
Retrieved from: Michel Baudin's Blog
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The BOM Rap recommended restricting the centrally managed part of the Bill Of Materials (BOM) of an assembly plant to the Gozinto (“goes-into”) structure of the items. Building on this, Part II used a small toy example to introduce the Vàzsonyi procedure as a tool usable on a laptop computer to extract useful information from BOMs […]

The post The BOM Rap (Part III) — Scaling Up appeared first on Michel Baudin's Blog.

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by LSSU Admin - Tuesday, 28 July 2020, 1:00 PM
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In my last couple of posts I looked at design for manufacturing and assembly DFMA. However, there is more out there. Often, they are grouped as Design for X, where X could be anything related to the product life cycle, including development, production, shipping, servicing, use, disposal, and many more. There seems to be a ... Read more
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During May, Hugh Alley published a book that introduces the central skills that any supervisor must master with, at least, a basic working competency: instructing, leading, and making improvements in their own area. It is entitled Becoming the Supervisor
Achieving Your Company's Mission and Building Your Team, and it presents some of the more widely used tools that a new supervisor may need. More importantly, it ties these tools and skills to solving particular problems.

I spoke with Hugh this month and asked him: “What are the common mistakes many new supervisors make?” Here is his complete response:

I’d say that there are three common mistakes among new supervisors.

First, they are not clear enough with their employees when they assign work. They’ll describe what need to be done, but they’ll skip over the details of how the work is to be done. These details are what set the orders apart, and they are where the mistakes happen. You need to go over them with your employee. And you need a conversation about how long the work will take. When that happens, both supervisor and worker can agree, and the supervisor’s stress goes down.

Second, they act without thinking through a situation when something is amiss. Usually that’s because they don’t have a structured way to approach this sort of problem. In the book, Julie, the GM, introduces Trevor, the young supervisor to the Job Relations approach, which gives a nice structured way to think about any situation. I’ve seen team leads charging across the floor to “deal with” someone stop in their tracks and reconsider when they remember the steps of the Job Relations program. It’s very powerful.

Third, they don’t pay enough attention to standard work. They don’t make sure that people are using the best way to do a job that the organization currently knows. That consistency will typically increase productivity by 10%. The best route to that is a good job breakdown, and the concepts of the Job Instruction module from Training Within Industry are very helpful here. In the book, Trevor learns how to do this, and it solves several problems. I’ve seen it reduce the time to get new staff up to speed from three months down to one month.

If new supervisors can get those three skills nailed, they’ll be much better off. From there, they can learn all the other skills. 

What is the quality of the leadership training within your organization? Do you agree with Hugh's assessment of common mistakes by new supervisors? Has your company experienced the benefits of a training within industry (TWI) program?

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by LSSU Admin - Monday, 27 July 2020, 4:00 PM
Retrieved from: Lean Thinking
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By Pascal Dennis (bio)

The past few years our Lean Pathways team has had the pleasure of working with software developers – a fun, capable and creative group.

For some years now, the software world has been using the Agile methodology to increase throughput while reducing defects and lead time.

In my experience, Agile and the Toyota Production System (TPS) are entirely simpatico.

In fact, it seems clear to me that Agile is a child (or perhaps grandchild) of TPS.

Core TPS principles and methodologies like visual management, team huddles (scrums), rapid experimentation and total involvement are central to Agile.


As you may recall, I am not interested in ‘theology’ – only in what works and lasts. TQM, TOC, BPR and Agile are all true, and all congruent with TPS.

All roads lead to Rome.

The clear and present danger for TPS/Lean, and Agile, is superficiality.
(Superficial systems generally attract opportunists seeking a quick hit.)

A set of connected principles and methods become a Way (do in Japanese) when they connect to your deeper being.

If our work is to last and attract new practitioners (e.g. Millennials) we need depth, which means connecting with TPS/Lean roots, and committing to years of practice.

Thereby, we’ll attract practitioners (deshi in Japanese) who’ll further develop the Way, and attract future deshi.

Best regards,


In case you missed our last few blogs... please feel free to have another look…

Point, Flow & System Improvement
Andon – Putting Quality at the Forefront
Lean Outside the Factory - Reverse Magic!

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Almost to a fault, the Lean methodology includes a lot of Japanese words, including kaizen, a word used to describe a particular approach to continuous improvement. When we learn words like this, they can draw us in to learn and understand more. Or, words like this can be off putting to some, creating unnecessary barriers […]

The post I Learned a New Word for Our Continuous Improvement Vocabulary — Maybe appeared first on Lean Blog.

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by LSSU Admin - Monday, 27 July 2020, 12:00 PM
Retrieved from: A Lean Journey
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The pandemic is completely redefining the way teams communicate and work. While remote work used to be offered by some companies as a way to offer a more flexible lifestyle to their employees, it has now become the norm for most businesses. Remote work is not an option or a privilege any more. It has become the norm in most organizations right after the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that COVID-19 reached the pandemic status and urged Governments and other authorities to step in to...

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On Fridays I will post a Lean related Quote. Throughout our lifetimes many people touch our lives and leave us with words of wisdom. These can both be a source of new learning and also a point to pause and reflect upon lessons we have learned. Within Lean active learning is an important aspect on this journey because without learning we can not improve.

"It's easy to make a buck. It's a lot tougher to make a difference."   — Tom Brokaw

A lot of people want to make a difference...

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