waste

Eliminating Waste from Your Personal Work [Lessons from the Road]

06.10.2013

Everyone performs work, and everyone has the opportunity to improve how that work is executed. In my last 2 columns for Industry Week, I have focused on different aspects of value, the customer, and waste elimination. I continue that theme in this month’s installment of Lessons from the Road in a column titled Eliminating Waste […]

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Eliminate Waste with Purpose [Lessons from the Road]

02.20.2013

My latest IndustryWeek Lessons from the Road column has been released. This month’s topic is hopefully a fresh look at an old lean topic: waste elimination. Despite the many definitions to the contrary, many of you know that my view is that lean is not “all about” waste elimination. But it’s still important, and so […]

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Lean is about waste elimination, or is it?

12.21.2011

Review any company’s slide decks on lean and you’ll likely find a definition for lean. They’re all a little different, but almost all of them center around one common theme: the elimination of waste. So, at least by consensus, this is the definition of lean: the elimination of waste. Of course some are more traditionalist […]

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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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Waste out > Waste in = Calories out > Calories In

06.06.2011

When is waste elimination enough? At what point do we run out of waste to eliminate? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this line of inquiry. Here is one of the many fundamental flaws in this belief: Waste is always creeping back into our process and our organization. It comes in through […]

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What is the purpose of waste elimination? And the natural law of gas

05.31.2011

Waste elimination seems pretty straightforward, right? Of course waste elimination is good, so why do we need a purpose? Because when we free up waste, most organizations don’t know what to do with it. To be clear about this, you first need to be clear about the strategic direction or vision for the organization. This […]

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Answer Your Customers’ Questions

03.03.2011

Recently I had a problem with Delta. Delta treats me pretty well, in part because of my extensive travel to our clients, but this day had me annoyed. It was a small thing that turned into a bigger thing. I had an outbound flight in the morning, and a return leg in the evening. Even […]

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My favorite story about waste: the ARS

01.19.2011

This may be my favorite story about waste elimination… As part of his company’s policy, Bill had to manually fill out his timecard each week.  On that time card was a column titled ARS.  When Bill started, he was taught to just put a zero in the ARS column each time, just as everyone else […]

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Entropy is lurking

01.07.2011

Yes, I am an engineer by training, and sometimes look to principles of engineering systems for lessons in organizational improvement. One of my favorite classes, believe it or not, was thermodynamics. I found to be an innate beauty and how thermodynamic systems worked. The second law of thermodynamics states that the entropy of a closed […]

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Where’s the systematic, in your systematic waste elimination?

01.05.2011

Waste elimination has often been a central tenant in lean transformation. However, leave is not all about waste, as I wrote about on The Lean Edge recently. if you are going to focus on waste, then certainly the go almost be the reduction, and ultimately, the elimination of the waste that exists in your organization. […]

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