FEATURE – There is a form of waste – complexity in raw and packaging materials – that adds costs to manufacturing without creating value, but it is often overlooked. The author explains what it is and how to banish it.
FEATURE – When market changes caused operational problems in their firm, two top managers decided to stick to lean thinking (and a set of specific practices) – learning to focus on what truly matters and letting their people embrace problem-solving.
WOMACK’S YOKOTEN – The rise of the robots may still belong in sci-fi books, but there is no doubt that work as we know it is fading away. What is the role of lean thinking in this world of drones and driverless taxis?
FEATURE - We often hear that lean is a fundamentally different approach, but what does this really mean? The authors reflect on how lean challenges and debunks our assumptions on how to run a firm, which might also explain why it meets such resistance.
PROFILE - When years of hard work to re-organize Patria's IT operations led to disappointing results, Sari Torkkola didn't throw in the towel. Instead, she started to build her department's understanding of lean.
FEATURE – We often think that making every product customers might want – no matter how little they sell or how much complexity they add to our schedule – is inherently lean. As Toyota understands quite well, however, it is quite the opposite.
FEATURE – The warehousing department of a Dutch hospital has been implementing lean for a few years. Its Head of Logistics believes in an approach to change based on respect for people and on making small but steady steps.
FEATURE - Effectively dealing with a problem means learning to solve it in a variety of scenarios, not perfecting a point solution. For too long in lean we have only focused on gaining reusable knowledge... but what about reusable learning?
FEATURE – A group of Italian researchers and professionals partnered with a NGO to prove how lean thinking can pave the way for the competitiveness and sustainable development of SMEs in Myanmar. Is this a new model for the developing world?
PROFILE – Children can dream big. They always have a million questions and are not afraid of making mistakes. So why are we not thinking more like them? It turns out it might be a great way to unleash our full potential as lean leaders.
FEATURE – As an experiment to boost cross-functional collaboration, creativity and joy on the workplace, Iceland-based machining manufacturer Marel recently ran a hackathon. Here's what the experience taught them.
WOMACK'S YOKOTEN – Lean in agriculture might still be in its infancy, but there is a small farm in Indiana that is already proving how valuable lean principles and techniques can be to this industry.
FEATURE – When middle managers are stressed and overworked, there is no time left for them to improve. Changing the interaction between leaders and teams, using lean principles and empowering people, can truly ignite your transformation.
FEATURE – By looking at the state of lean management in the South African government sector, the author shares a number of important lessons that apply to public service organizations all around the world.
FEATURE – What are the immediate signs that tell us that our workplace is not conducive to kaizen? The author draws on his experience as a coach at the gemba to highlight them. Look out for them in your own company!
WOMACK'S YOKOTEN - Given the name of this column, it only makes sense to analyze the word yokoten. So, how can we effectively help others to apply what we learn at the gemba? What makes yokoten successful?
OPINION - If you have ever 5S-ed your daughter’s room or tried to bring one-piece flow to your grocery routine, this article on what lean management looks like in our personal lives is for you.
ARTICLE – Games can help you to engage people and communicate lean management principles. Here is a number of useful tips and suggestions on how to make training more… playful.