Each month new articles, book reviews, and other content are added to the Superfactory website. The new content is featured in the free monthly e-newsletter which goes out to 50,000 subscribers worldwide, and we will also post a monthly heads-up on this blog.
New content in January includes:
The featured article is from Bob Emiliani and is titled Too Much Selfish Thinking. The following is a brief excerpt, and you can read the entire article here.
The Lean community has struggled for many years to gain buy-in from senior executives in large corporations. Perhaps it’s been so hard because there is too much selfish thinking and not enough Lean thinking. If so, what countermeasures can be applied?
There is no doubt that Lean management has been mischaracterized as a “manufacturing thing” for most of the last 30 years, with a nearly singular focus on continuous improvement and the use Lean tools. This has been a principal factor that has limited the application of Lean principles and practices beyond operations, and also, of course, into services businesses, government, non-profits, etc. It also helps explain why nearly 30 years after Lean came to America there are only a few big businesses that practice Lean management pretty well. Shouldn’t there be many more?
The Other Perspectives section has an article by Don Kivell titled Sustaining Lean: Empowerment. The following is a brief excerpt, and you can read the entire article here.
In part one of this three-part series, we established that lean manufacturing can only help you over the long term if you have committed to making it a company wide standard operating policy. If, instead, you make a raft of positive changes during your lean transition and then expect the program to be self sustaining, chances are that employees will slip back into what’s comfortable and easy, rather than what’s efficient and lean. The bottom line? A company that commits to a proactive, continuous lean effort has a far better chance of succeeding.
One major foundation pillar of lean is the sustained support that its initiatives must receive from management. Executive management supports initiatives by showing support for the people running them. When there is no support, workers lose enthusiasm; there is nothing driving them to improve. Any momentum that was originally created will fizzle out.
The featured book for this month is the latest release from the Lean Enterprise Institute, Getting the Right Things Done by Pascal Dennis. A short synopsis is below, and you can learn more about the book or order it here.
For companies to be competitive, leaders must engage people at all levels in order to focus their energy and enable them to apply lean principles to everything they do. Strategy deployment, called hoshin kanri by Toyota, has proven to be the most effective process for meeting this ongoing challenge. The book is designed to provide readers with a framework for understanding the key components of strategy deployment: agreeing on the company’s “True North,” working within the PDCA cycle, getting consensus through “catchball,” the deployment leader concept and A3 thinking. It links action to theory and reminds us that lean tools – like value-stream maps, kaizen events, and 5S – are only the means to an end, not ends in themselves.
We continually update the other major sections of the website, including:
Events Calendar: a listing of lean excellence seminars, workshops, training, and conferences worldwide
Topic Information: Summaries and resources on over 40 enterprise excellence topics.
History of Excellence: A growing timeline of notable events that helped shape current-day enterprise excellence
PowerPoint Presentations: Over 50 downloadable PowerPoint presentations on lean manufacturing, quality, enterprise, and safety concepts.
Factory Toolbox: Almost 300 downloadable forms, procedure templates, assessments, and tools to help you not reinvent the wheel.
Tools and Assessments: Downloadable assessment tools.
Virtual Factory Tours: Web and streaming video tours of over 100 factories.
We are always looking for new articles and other content. Contact us via the Superfactory website if you would like to contribute to our knowledge base.