Site blog

Picture of LSSU Admin
by LSSU Admin - Tuesday, 1 December 2020, 12:00 PM
Retrieved from:
Anyone in the world

The baton touch is probably the easiest way to do multi-machine handling in a line. This ease-of-use makes it a very popular approach for the assignment of the operators in a line. An operator is in charge of a fixed set of processes. The operator always repeats the same loop of processes. Multiple operators, each ... Read more

The post The Baton Touch Flow Line first appeared on
Anyone in the world

Last Thursday, I re-watched a classic episode of “WKRP in Cincinnati.” Yeah, I'm old enough that this is a show I watched as a kid. I was born in Dayton and lived just north of Cincinnati until I was five and I loved the radio… so that might have been part of the appeal to […]

The post A Surprising and Extraordinary Master Class in Non-Lean Management appeared first on Lean Blog.

Anyone in the world

An impressive new book by Jeremy Nicholls, entitled The Everyday Project Manager: A Primer for Learning the Principles of Successful Project Management, explores the key attributes and skills of successful project management and describes the practical skills that will enhance project delivery regardless of your level of experience. In addition, Jeremy posits that success and survival in business relies on change and the way that business implements change is through projects.

At the beginning of the month, I spoke to Jeremy about his book and asked him: "What are the common mistakes made when trying to implement change through projects?" Here is his full answer:

Understanding the Context for Change

In the enthusiasm to get going and DO SOMETHING, organizations frequently fail to set a project within the wider business and strategic context.  Change via projects is easiest to implement, and more effective when it aligns with the overall background of change.  By considering the broader organizational goals and – importantly – how your project aligns to those goals, you will be better able to articulate the drivers for change.  This increases buy-in and significantly improves your change implementation.  When you think about it, this applies to personal projects too – your project to decorate the bedroom might be a great idea, but if your partner’s plan is to sell the house next year, they won’t support your change.

Identifying Champions

For change to be implemented most effectively, you require support up and down the organization. It seems to be stating the obvious to say that the more people who are championing your project, the more likely it is to succeed, but it is frequently overlooked. When people deliver projects, they tend to get very caught up in the nuts and bolts of the delivery itself.  It’s a different skill set, but one that the best project managers have, to get out there and engage with stakeholders and bring people along for the journey.  Your project sponsor is the key here; if they are not excited about the project outcome then there’s no reason anyone else should be.  But the main point is don’t just be a project manager – be a project cheerleader!

Get the Basics Right

There will be certain points during a change project where things get exciting.  This can be for a good, expected reason (the much-anticipated go-live), or a not-so-good, unexpected reason (an issue that threatens to derail the project).  In either case, when the temperature of the project gets to fever pitch, the first things to get side-lined are often the good (but not quite as exciting) practices that keep a project on track.  Stay focused on the objectives; remember the reasons for doing the project in the first place.  Avoid the tendency, to throw the baby out with the bathwater when the project hits a bump.  Go back to first principles, take a breath, and keep going.

What are your thoughts on Jeremy's perspective? Has your company been successful implementing change through projects? What attributes do you think compose a successful project manager?

Picture of LSSU Admin
by LSSU Admin - Monday, 30 November 2020, 4:00 PM
Retrieved from: Lean Thinking
Anyone in the world
By Pascal Dennis (bio)

Thucydides, Sun Tzu, Livy, Machiavelli, Clausewitz - magic names.

These Masters of War are still read centuries & millennia later.

Thucydides' The Peloponnesian War was the classical text of choice during the two Iraq wars.

And General Colin Powell, famously, had the following quote from the master framed on his State Department desk:

"Of all manifestations of power, restraint impresses men most."


Sun Tzu, Machiavelli and Clausewitz are no less popular.

Why are these authors still relevant?

Because they wrote beautifully - clear, simple sentences that cut to the heart of the issue.

Because they lived what they wrote about. (All were practitioners, with all respect to many contemporary academics.)

Because human nature does not change.

In our consulting work, I see the same chess positions over and over.

Different board, different style of chess piece -- but the same positions.

The greats understand this, which I suppose is what makes them great.

I have image of these old boys shooting the breeze in a bar, regaling one another with stories, the ideas, opinions and insights coming fast & furious.

(I'd love to be the bartender!)



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

Why is laughter important in business?
Practical Problem Solving – Proving Cause & Effect
Lean Means Don’t Be a Dumb-Ass
Lean – So ‘Easy’, It’s Hard

Anyone in the world

I'm excited that Episode #22 of my new podcast “My Favorite Mistake” is now released! You can listen to it (or watch it or read a podcast) via my website: Episode #22: Karen Martin on Leaving Her Corporate Job to Go Solo Joining me for Episode #22 is Karen Martin, who readers here most likely […]

The post “My Favorite Mistake” Episode #22: Karen Martin on the Arrogance of Wanting Certainty appeared first on Lean Blog.

Picture of LSSU Admin
by LSSU Admin - Monday, 30 November 2020, 12:00 PM
Retrieved from: A Lean Journey
Anyone in the world
A selection of highlighted blog posts from Lean bloggers from the month of November 2020.  You can also view the previous monthly Lean Roundups here.Five 5 Why Fallacies to Avoid - Jon Miller shares five fallacies related to 5 why analysis that need to be avoided for more effective problem solving. Why should you have a Chief Engineer? - Jamie Flinchbaugh explains the importance of having a Chief Engineer role in you organizationPractical Problem Solving – Proving Cause & Effect -...

To continue reading this post click on the title.
Picture of LSSU Admin
by LSSU Admin - Saturday, 28 November 2020, 2:39 PM
Retrieved from: Lean Blog
Anyone in the world

Thanks as always to Ryan McCormick for this… there's always so much good reading, listening, and viewing shared here by him! Healthcare — Creating Value for Patients It's exciting to see that Covid vaccines are on the way.  But the logistics of the “cold chain” are complex. Here's how a Covid-vaccine gets from the manufacturer to […]

The post Operational Excellence Mixtape: November 27, 2020 appeared first on Lean Blog.

Picture of LSSU Admin
by LSSU Admin - Friday, 27 November 2020, 12:00 PM
Retrieved from: A Lean Journey
Anyone in the world
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.

"Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others."   — Cicero
It’s that time of year where many...

To continue reading this post click on the title.
Anyone in the world

I'm running a special “Black Friday” week promotion… signed paperback copies of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More for $20, including “media mail” shipping. The regular price, through Amazon, is $37.95 for this full-color 250+ page book. Unfortunately, due to high shipping costs, I can only offer this to people with U.S. […]

The post “Black Friday” Sale Through December 4th, Signed Copies of “Measures of Success” for $20 appeared first on Lean Blog.

Picture of LSSU Admin
by LSSU Admin - Thursday, 26 November 2020, 12:00 PM
Retrieved from: A Lean Journey
Anyone in the world
Thanksgiving Day has evolved over the years as an important holiday. It is not just about feasting and merrymaking. The tradition of Thanksgiving dinner teaches us to appreciate the finer things in life. It is about showing one's gratitude for the blessings that we are showered with. In all the hustle and bustle of getting ready for Thanksgiving, take a moment to focus on what being thankful is all about.   More Than A Day

As Thanksgiving Day rolls around,
It brings up some facts, quite...

To continue reading this post click on the title.