How Lean Strategies Can Affect Your Profitability

In the dynamic landscape of business, profitability is a top priority. Lean strategies have emerged as a powerful approach to achieving sustained financial success. In this insightful article, we delve into the direct and indirect ways in which lean strategies can significantly impact your organization’s profitability. By understanding these effects, you can harness the potential

Lean vs. Traditional: Which Approach Yields Better Results?

In the ever-evolving landscape of business practices, the choice between adopting a lean approach or sticking with traditional methods can significantly impact an organization’s success. In this insightful article, we delve into the comparative advantages and disadvantages of lean and traditional approaches, helping you make an informed decision about which strategy aligns best with your

Are Your Operations Truly Lean? Key Indicators to Assess Efficiency

The pursuit of operational efficiency is at the core of lean principles. However, gauging whether your operations are genuinely lean requires more than just surface-level observation. In this comprehensive article, we delve into key indicators that can help you assess the true lean efficiency of your processes. By understanding these indicators and their implications, you

Kaizen: Continuous Improvement for Lean Manufacturing Success

Kaizen, a Japanese philosophy of continuous improvement, has become a cornerstone of lean manufacturing practices. By embracing the principles of Kaizen, organizations can unlock significant improvements in their processes, productivity, and overall success. In this article, we will delve into the concept of Kaizen, its principles, implementation strategies, and its transformative impact on lean manufacturing

Overcoming the Challenges Associated With Lean Manufacturing

Lean manufacturing is a powerful methodology that helps businesses to improve their efficiency, reducing waste and identifying issues in their processes and systems. As a business owner, it is important to question whether you Challenge Your Lean Thinking, utilizing the resources available as well as some lean supplies to create vast organizational improvements. When getting

Just-in-Time Production: Just the Basics

Kanban manufacturing bins

When trying to improve the efficiency of a facility there are many different options to consider. For decades now, one of the best options is to implement just-in-time (JIT) production strategies. This is a concept that was originally started by the Toyota Motor Company as a key component of their Toyota Production System. This strategy

Using Kaizen with Kanban

Using Kaizen with Kanban

Kanban, translated to mean visual card or sign, is an extremely helpful too for manufacturing facilities that use pull systems or the Just-In-Time system. A kanban system utilizes visual communication and works to avoid overproduction and excess inventory, but it is a concept that can be a little tricky to dive into. In order to

“Morale” of the Story

workers waiting for respect

Often times in continuous manufacturing improvement activities, only the machines and processes get the focus and the people are slapped back on the production line with little more than new instructions or even added responsibilities. When people are continuously dealing with alterations in what they are told to do and how to do it, it can become demeaning; you are changing the way they do their job that they have done everyday for possibly years. All of their skills and learned tricks for their job may have just been thrown out the door or replaced. An employee can feel replaceable or mistreated in this case, which lowers morale. It isn’t hard to believe that low morale leads to low productivity, lapses in concentration, and increased unplanned absences. All of these factors hurt your capacity, decrease safety, dampen improvement initiatives, and cause a void between management and labor. Therefore, high morale is important in any company for continued success and improvement.

Transparency and incorporation in the improvement process is key for maintaining higher morale. With transparency, at the very least, the employee gains exposure to the reasons why their responsibilities are changing. Accommodating the workers in this way can give them a sense of importance and

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Lean Way to the Danger Zone

Dangerous Path

Looking for motivation on industry topics, I searched around various sites and stumbled across an article on called Building Supply Chain Resilience. The article brought up something that I hadn’t written about yet; lean manufacturing, like most engineering decisions, has risks. This article specifically refers to the natural disasters in 2011 that left large businesses crippled and the negative effects that lean principles have in such cases.

The crippled, or even destroyed, businesses were suppliers for other businesses and manufacturing facilities, which then sell their finished goods to retailers. The effects of disasters reach deeply into the affected industries. Lean manufacturing principles, specifically just-in-time (JIT) production, emphasizes low inventory levels of raw materials, work-in-process, and finished goods so as to minimize costs. For companies that are in the affected disaster area, JIT is ideal because it means losses were minimized. However, if you practice JIT production, what happens when your supplier unexpectedly shuts down or is destroyed by a natural disaster?

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