Features

Enhancing your gemba skills

FEATURE – Michael Ballé shares a few tricks he uses to escape his default thinking and ensure he makes the most of every gemba walk he goes on.

Sorting out sourcing

FEATURE – The Sourcing team at insurance company SulAmérica tells us about how they were able to transform the process in their department in order to become more efficient in dealing with their workload.

The Crab Method

FEATURE – We hear it time and time again: in a lean transformation, middle management is the biggest hindrance to change. The author explains his strategy to win them over.

Learning to be lean chameleons

FEATURE – In this candid, personal account, the author shares her experience as a lean coach, her challenges and success, and how she adapts to different situations.

Gap analysis, made simple

FEATURE – The difficulty of sustaining results often stems from our inability to monitor the KPIs that truly matter and to focus on business priorities. The author suggests a hands-on approach to strategy deployment.

Predictable vs unpredictable work

FEATURE – It is a common misconception that our work is too unpredictable to fit into a standardized approach. The author debunks this myth. 

Grievances first

NOTES FROM THE GEMBA – How do you kick off a lean journey? This French company has chosen to begin by analyzing and tackling each customer complaint.

What does a lean sensei bring to the party?

FEATURE – Lean coaching is all the rage these days, but to what end? The author reframes the role of a sensei as an expert in achieving productivity by engaging everyone in kaizen.

Centerlining: what it is and how it works

FEATURE – In this compelling read, the author explains how “centerlining” tools and settings can reduce variation in a process and avoid having to constantly seek adjustments à la McGyver.

New Year loss and found

FEATURE – 2019 was another momentous year for the Lean Community. John Shook reflects on what we lost and what we gained in the last year of the decade.

Making hard work easier

FEATURE – Reflecting on some of the work he’s recently observed, the author discusses what lean thinking teaches us about making life easier for the value creators in our organizations.

The practice of reflection

FEATURE – The holidays are a time for reflection. The author shares some her reflections on her experience with lean thinking and the role of leadership in a lean transformation.  

A year in lean articles

FEATURE – As 2019 draws to an end, our editor looks back at best lean articles of the year and tells us why Lean Thinking should give us hope for the future.

What is hoshin kanri?

ROUNDUP – In the last roundup on lean tools and concepts of the year, our editor collects and curates the best articles on strategy deployment (hoshin kanri).

When startups visit Toyota

FEATURE – Digital organizations are starting to recognize that Toyota’s unique approach can show them the way forward, just like it does “traditional” organizations. Here, we hear from a few startup CEOs following their trip to Japan.

Change management from the inside out

FEATURE – The author discusses how the daily practice of lean thinking develops perseverance and the grit a leader needs to improve an organization.

Practice makes perfect

FEATURE – Much like lean management, attaining perfection in music requires constant practice. The author looks back at his musical past and at a recent Lean Global Network samba gig.

A lean transformation is a cognitive transformation

FEATURE – By looking at two practical examples, the authors discuss the cognitive shift towards learning and continuous improvement that takes place in a lean transformation.