lean manufacturing

The “mangineer” and people development

FEATURE – Sometimes you just need to get creative: as part of its flexible manufacturing model, Esquel introduced a new role on its shop floor – the “mangineer”.

Jishuken at a Coloplast distribution center

VIDEO - In February, a group of Lean Global Network coaches visited Coloplast's Parts Distribution Center in Hungary to help the local team improve the internal lead-time across the facility.

30 years since Machine came out – Part 2

INTERVIEW – Thirty years ago, a book introduced lean thinking to the world, started a global movement and transformed business forever. Our editor caught up with one of the authors.

30 years since Machine came out – Part 1

INTERVIEW – In the fall of 1990, a book was published that would kickstart a revolution in business. This week we are catching up with the authors to understand where we are and where we are headed. First up, Daniel Jones.

Smooth as silk

CASE STUDY – An Esquel factory in GuiLin, China injected lean principles and practices into its processes to become more efficient and environmentally-friendly.

Changing our minds to change our business

NOTES FROM THE GEMBA – It can take time to challenge our misconceptions and set off on a lean journey. Once we get it, however, it’s hard to stop the improvements, as this French company found out.

Lean in internal supply logistics

CASE STUDY – The implementation of lean in the internal logistics of a pharmaceutical company in Brazil proved key to increasing productivity and quality in the organization.

Four types of problems, in the management system

FEATURE – A lean management system is necessary to effectively run a business. Can Art Smalley’s four types of problems framework help such a system to focus on what’s really important?

Facing the crisis with an appetite for improvement

NOTES FROM THE VIRTUAL GEMBA – Despite a 40% drop in sales and the looming prospect of having to furlough part of its staff, this French company is finding in lean manufacturing an ally to fight the current crisis.

Lean thinking for more resilient supply chains

FEATURE – The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed all the shortcomings of our current supply chains. Lean Thinking can make them more agile, aligned and adaptive.

Facing the emergency

NOTES FROM THE (VIRTUAL) GEMBA – In this new series - one new article every week during the Covid-19 crisis) - the author asks companies how they are reacting to this health emergency. First up, Proditec.

Harada-san and the steps to better Jidoka

FEATURE – In the first piece of a series on Takehiko Harada’s contribution to TPS, the authors discuss the Nagara Switch and how it helps to achieve better Jidoka.

Immunity

CASE STUDY – This Italian manufacturer has found in lean a way to ensure business continuity and provide support to a distraught workforce in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak.

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.

Half the bad, double the good

CASE STUDY – The story of this Norwegian window and door manufacturer shows how a deep and ongoing commitment to a lean transformation can help a company thrive against all odds.

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.

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.

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.