Work improvement

How we slashed waiting times for our customers

VIDEO INTERVIEW – A store manager explains how a simple kaizen reduced waiting times for customers who want to return products. We use today’s video to launch our Lean Improv contest.

How we are rolling out lean in our chain of stores

FEATURE – When Praktiker decided to turn to lean thinking, they were faced with the challenge of rolling out its principles and practices to 20 DIY stores. Here’s how they are trying to make it work.
Michael Ballé yamazumi chart

Michael Ballé on how a yamazumi chart enables standard work

THE TOOLS CORNER – Standardizing the work is one of the fundamentals of lean thinking, but without a yamazumi chart visualizing it (and helping us to streamline it) this is impossible.
lean technology digital Halfway

Building applications that really support the daily work

FEATURE – Technology should help people in their work, and it is with this in mind that the  general manager of this car preparation center decided to learn to develop Apps.
red bins BAM lean software development

Building quality into our code using the red bins system

BUILDING BRIDGES – In this article, we learn how a team of software developers leverages the lean concept of “red bins” to ensure the quality of the code they write.
Lean quality management Michael Ballé

How to ensure quality issues are detected and tackled fast

THE TOOLS CORNER – This month, the author discusses how we can ensure quality problems are identified early, tackled swiftly and prevented from reoccurring.
furniture lean manufacturing

A single experiment changed how we produce furniture

FEATURE – Sometimes all you need to change minds is a successful experiment. This is how a Norwegian furniture manufacturer managed to transform the way it thinks about its sofa production.
work improvement 365 bakery lean management

How the 365 bakeries improved service to clients with lean

THE LEAN BAKERY – In this video, a shop coordinator explains how the 365 bakeries were able to speed up service to customers and ensure product quality by reorganizing work and responsibilities.
Womack production line

Lean has changed the production line forever

WOMACK’S YOKOTEN – This month, the author looks at the production line, a century-old idea that still fascinates us, reflecting on how lean thinking has changed it.
kaizen karakuri lean work

Here is the proof that kaizen leads to real innovation

NOTES FROM THE GEMBA – If you need proof that kaizen leads to real innovation, look no further than AIO. This French Tech company that reinvented itself as a karakuri kaizen coach.
lean hospital flow Moinhos de Vento

Lean thinking moves mountains in this Brazilian hospital

INTERVIEW – By making lean its way of thinking and acting, a hospital in Porto Alegre, Brazil was able to dramatically improve patient flow and transform its culture.
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.
Glenday small problems

Why fixing the little problems should not be discounted

FEATURE – A broken phone or a clock showing the wrong time may seem small details to you, but they actually make people's jobs more difficult. Fixing these issues improves work and boosts morale... It also says a lot about you as a company.
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!
kaizen or kaikaku

Kaizen or kaikaku, wonders Jim Womack in his latest column

WOMACK'S YOKOTEN - Kaizen or kaikaku? This is the problem. When it comes to the pace of change, should we carry on with small, incremental improvements or aim at more revolutionary changes instead?
lean political party

A political party’s first steps towards lean thinking

FEATURE – A local branch of Italy’s Democratic Party has started using lean principles and tools to organize its activities more effectively and to counteract the discouragement that followed a bad electoral defeat.
falkenburg doctor workstation huddle

Better work: bringing lean thinking to a doctor’s practice

FEATURE – Moving her assistant's workstation next to hers and introducing standardized work helped a family physician in California to provide better, faster care to her patients and to avoid burnout.
fitness lean markovitz

Use lean management to make your organization fit

FEATURE – Just like a diet alone won't result in real fitness, cost cutting is in itself not enough to ensure an organization is healthy. Making our companies fit and sustaining results begin with building capabilities in our people and improving our processes.