5s

levelled production eliminate the blues

Eliminate complexity in raw and packaging materials

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.
Gemba tokheim italia

Focusing on problem solving at the front line

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.
end of work womack

Work as we know it is disappearing; how can lean adapt?

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?
thinking upside down ballé liker

Why lean thinking challenges our assumptions on management

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.

Knowledge-building for lean: a profile of Sari Torkkola

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.
levelled production low sale products

To be leaner discontinue high-volume low-sale products

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.
lean logistics holland

Revolutionizing warehousing in a hospital with lean thinking

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.

Ballé, Jones and Chaize on reusable learning in lean

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?
lean in myanmar

Lean project boosts sustainable development in Myanmar

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?
Klaus Petersen leader profile

Think and see like a child to achieve your lean potential

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.

How Iceland firm Marel motivated engineers with a hackathon

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.
lean farming womack

The future of agriculture – Jim Womack visits a lean farm

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.
team and leader development

A step-by-step guide to leadership and team lean development

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.
lean government lessons

A few lean government lessons from South Africa

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.
gemba seven sins

Michael Ballé on the gemba cardinal sins hindering kaizen

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 yokoten column

How can we help others to apply what we learn at the gemba?

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?
personal life lean thinking

What does lean management look like in our every-day life?

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.

How to use games to teach lean management principles

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.