lean strategy

Hoshin kanri in a picture

FEATURE – Hoshin is a powerful management practice that aligns the work at different levels to a company’s strategic goals. The author offers a one-page visual summary.

The gift that keeps on giving

FEATURE – The benefits of establishing a lean operating system will support the growth and success of a business in the long term, says Karen Gaudet looking back at her experience at Starbucks.

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.

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.

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.

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).

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.

What is an Obeya?

FEATURE – In this roundup, we discuss the obeya room and use some of the best articles on the topic to explain why it’s such a powerful tool to drive improvement in your organization.

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.

Cancelling the distance

CASE STUDY – What to do when you operate in a competitive market and are located in a remote corner of Europe, thousands of miles from your customer? One word: lean.

The synergies you need to succeed

FEATURE – While at Starbucks, the author learned the importance of collaboration among the key functions of Operations, HR and Finance to advance a lean transformation.

A crazy little thing called change

COLUMN – In her first column, the author reflects on the role of leadership in striking a balance between the enthusiasm for change and the need to involve everyone in a transformation.

Blue-sky thinking

FEATURE – Successfully engaging people and building a solid daily management system is allowing a Velux factory in Poland to fulfill its strategic goals.  

Banking on hoshin

FEATURE – What a Brazilian bank has learned from its first few steps in adopting hoshin kanri through structured problem solving and people development.

Monozukuri, Hitozukuri, Kotozukuri

RESEARCH – The authors present a new perspective on value creation. In addition to monozukuri (making things) and hitozukuri (making people), they discuss the idea of kotozukuri, making things happen.

Where the true strength of an obeya lies

FEATURE – The obeya room limits the number of unknowns before we start developing a product. In this sense, it’s a tool for discovery more than it is for delivery.

From kaizen to innovation

FEATURE – Innovation is a process and lean thinking allows that process to take place, by empowering everyone in the company to think creatively about solving customer problems.