tools

How to trick yourself into thinking you’re doing lean (and trick others at the same time)

01.10.2012

What to do when problem solving tools become the problem? One of the funniest blogs in the world, in my opinion, is The Oatmeal. However, this one about pros and cons struck a cord because what makes it funny is exactly that it’s how people work. Here’s the heart of the problem: Image by The […]

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The Project Box [Guest Post]

11.22.2011

Guest Post: Donald Sweigart worked with “The Body Shop @” which developed the “Star-Link Certified” Lean business model improving Profitability, CSI, and Cycle Time in the Collision Repair Industry. This model is now licensed by a Fortune 100 in it’s Industry-wide Lean Training. His passion is implementing Lean solutions in industry. A project box is […]

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Lean Tools: How the English Make Tea [Guest Post]

09.23.2011

Guest Post: James Lawther is Head of Operational Excellence for a FTSE 100 company. He blogs on the topic of service improvement, and he gets upset by poor customer service I am English.  If there is one thing the English love (and are particularly good at), it is the art and science of making and […]

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Don’t Do 5S

05.04.2010

I know I’ll catch plenty of flak from the lean stalwarts out there. This will certainly go against conventional wisdom and common practice. But sometimes conventional wisdom is wrong. I don’t believe companies should start their lean journey with 5S. Many believe is should be done early. Many believe is it step #1, as this […]

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Why we won’t do 100 kaizens for you

04.08.2010

Every day at the Lean Learning Center is an adventure. We approach our work with clients with an extreme bias towards flexibility. We do have standard work for activities, but how we might engage a client will be different every time. And that starts with a wide range of requests. But some of them we […]

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Helping Make A3 Work, Part 4 (of 4)

11.25.2009

This is my last in the 4 part series on A3 problem solving. I’ll be answering more questions on a webinar hosted by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers which I hope you’ll check out and join. On to our final questions. Q8. Is there software that can help me with this? Yes and no. The […]

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Helping Make A3 Work, Part 3

11.24.2009

I am continuing on with more Q&A about the problem solving process of A3, popularized through the use at Toyota and an effective coaching and development tool. So onto the questions. Q5. What is the best way to start? I think it is best to start on a problem that you have no other means […]

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Helping Make A3 Work, Part 2

11.23.2009

Last Friday I started posting some Q&A on the transformation of problem solving using A3 methods. This is in support of a webinar I am leading on the topic. Here we continue to the Q&A. Q3. What advantages does A3 have over other problem solving methodologies? There are some advantages that are small. It is […]

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Helping Make A3 Work, Part 1

11.20.2009

On December 15th, I’ll be providing a webinar on the topic of A3 problem solving. I’ve been spending a good amount of time lately helping leaders from various organizations improve their lean thinking by utilizing A3 problem solving. In the following few blog posts, I’ll answer some of the common questions people have about A3 […]

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To Standardize, or to Not?

11.19.2009

A frequent question that I get is how far to take standardization. This is particularly true for multiple locations. Then the question becomes how far do you go to standardize from site to site. As with anything, to key to avoid getting lost in questions like this is to get and remain clear on the […]

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