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 August includes:
The featured article is from Dan Markovitz and is titled You Have Too Much Time On Your Hands. Really. The following is a brief excerpt, and you can read the entire article here.
Toyota calls it “lowering the water level.” Imagine a value stream or a production process as a river. Reducing the inventory in the process – “lowering the water level” – exposes the “rocks” that represent all of the hidden costs and waste in production. Only by revealing those rocks can you improve the process and reduce the waste.
This metaphor works for knowledge workers, too. In this case, however, their key inventory item is time. Having too much time to do one’s work hides the waste and inefficiencies in the process.
Now, most people would deny they have too much time to do their work. Not too many people are taking three-martini lunches anymore, or leaving the office right at 5:00pm. Hell, on average Americans only take about 79% of their vacation time, and 20% of people work on their vacations. And with our cellphone- and Crackberry-addled days, nights, and weekends, it seems as though there’s an infinite torrent of work. Further, these vacation-skipping, Bluetooth-beholden employees complain vociferously about a lack of time for their personal lives.
The Featured Blog Post is Craig Woll’s recent piece titled Toyota Training The World… Sort Of. The following is a brief excerpt, and you can read the entire post here.
It appears that Toyota has set up a 3 year technical training school in India to expand automobile manufacturing expertise in that area. According to one report this is the only training school outside of Japan. “The Toyota Technical Training School will train students in various aspects of automobile manufacturing such as welding, painting, automobile assembly and mechatronics.”
Another article described the venture in this way: “The purpose of this technical training institute was to offer an opportunity to acquire special skills ‘Monozukuri’ or skilled manufacturing, for those students who had the talent but could not go for higher education due to economic reasons.”
The featured book this month is Real Lean, Volume 1 and Volume 2 by Shingo Prize winning author Bob Emiliani. The following is a brief summary, and you can learn more or order the book by clicking on the links above.
Shingo Prize winning author Bob Emiliani explains the purposes, advantages, myths, and misinformation surrounding Lean management. In a lively and engaging style, he answers the key questions that leaders of organizations have about Lean management. A perfect read for the busy executive, each volume is a practical guide to Lean management, complete with interesting and informative linkages to historical events and long-forgotten perspectives. Readers will learn how the two principles of Lean management, "Continuous Improvement" and "Respect for People," work in tandem, with emphasis on "Respect for People" the principle that is often missing from the practice of Lean management.
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
- Online E-Learning Center: Fourteen interactive online presentations on the core concepts of lean manufacturing.
- 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.