Focus

The gateway to success

NOTES FROM THE GEMBA – By introducing flow in its processes and transforming its approach to managing the business, this French manufacturer of fences and gates is building a competitive advantage.

The iron law of scale-up

FEATURE – As our social systems grow, we need an effective way to manage them. This makes bureaucracies an inescapable part of life for our society and businesses. But how can we mitigate their negative effects?

Re-start with a clean slate

CASE STUDY – From client and supplier to partners-in-lean: how solving a problem together transformed the relationship between a Dutch hospital and the laundry supplying clean garments to it.

Lean helps save lives in South Africa

FEATURE – Only when we go where the action is, do we begin to truly understand the work. Rose Heathcote joins the Emergency Medical Services in Cape Town for a day.

A journey of mind-blowing improvement

CASE STUDY – Seven years ago, this Italian manufacturer ran an experiment to reduce inventory in its warehouse. Today, lean thinking permeates every aspect of life at FPZ.

Slashing onboarding time for new developers

BUILDING BRIDGES – Using kaizen, a team at Theodo was able to reduce the time necessary to install a project on a new developer’s computer from three weeks to twelve minutes.

Taking the lean leap in private healthcare

INTERVIEW – A private healthcare group in South Africa has carefully studied the unique challenges it faces and customized its approach to improvement accordingly, embarking on a lean journey to better patient care.

Leadership development at Volvo Cars

CASE STUDY – What is the approach to people development used at Volvo Cars? The authors explain how the organization has created a production system fully owned by operators and managers.

When lean takes off

NOTES FROM THE GEMBA – The author visits the Parisian airport of Orly to learn about a pilot project (pun intended) that aims to tackle the late departure of flights using lean thinking.

Moving forward

INTERVIEW – This moving company in Singapore has taken its first steps down the lean road, reminding us that translating your strategy into small, actionable improvements people can make at the gemba is the way to a transformation.

Where are we in lean product development?

FEATURE – The authors discuss some of the most common problems that product development teams experience and what an effective assessment tool for engineering looks like.

Daily management in the ICU

CASE STUDY – Effectively deploying and executing your strategy requires mastering quick follow-ups at different levels of the organization – in other words, Daily Management.

Lean is an educational system

FEATURE – In this compelling read, the author discusses lean thinking as a system for learning that challenges our assumptions and tells us why blindly applying “best practices” takes us nowhere.

Lean logistics for better customer service

CASE STUDY – Logistics can be the key to achieving success and creating a competitive advantage in a company. This case study tells the story of a port terminal in Brazil that has used lean to achieve significant gains in managing its road flow.

Leading large-scale lean change

INTERVIEW – Rose Keanly discusses the role of lean in a strategic business transformation in the financial services sector and the dos and don’ts of bringing lean to a large organization. 

A sense of heritage in an uncertain world

FEATURE – In a market where products become obsolete very fast, this Toyota supplier has learned the importance of staying true to its heritage and developing know-how and people’s capabilities.

Through hardship to the stars

CASE STUDY – Catalonia's largest hospital is undergoing a successful transformation - supported by pioneering hoshin experiments - that has already turned it into a poster child for lean healthcare in the region.

Benefits and difficulties of using a Concept Paper

CASE STUDY – TechnipFMC has introduced the Concept Paper in its lean product development process. This article shares some of the learnings resulting from the experience.