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Climbing on Board with a New 5S Program

5S guide and poster

You’ve done it! You’ve chosen to start a new 5S program at your business. Get ready for quite the ride with all the improvements that are going to be cascading onto you and your employee’s shoulders as you climb on board with this well-known Lean manufacturing method. Those improvements don’t happen by themselves though, both

Getting the Most Out of Kaizen

Continuous improvement meeting

The term Kaizen comes from two Japanese words. Kai, which means change, and Zen, which means good. In the manufacturing world, this generally gets translated to mean change for the better, which is the basis for the concept of continuous improvement. Companies that aren’t always looking for ways to improve will find that they are

Lean Manufacturing + Just-in-Time (JIT) Production

Inside a Lean Warehouse Facility

Lean manufacturing just-in-time (JIT) production are two concepts that have quite a bit in common but are actually distinct strategies. Where JIT is focused on improving efficiency, lean looks to take using efficiency to help add additional value to the products that the customer is buying. When used together, these two strategies can provide many

Gemba Reveals Waste

Gemba reveals waste

With a number of Lean tools at your disposal, it’s important to find the ones that work for your facility. Let’s consider how Gemba, a concept that comes from Lean manufacturing, relates to other Lean ideas. Lean aims to identify and eliminate waste from work processes, ultimately making operations more efficient and less costly while

The Kaizen Group

The Kaizen Group

At its core, kaizen is a group effort. Only when the entire organization embraces the ideals of kaizen will you see its benefits. The dedication to kaizen must start at the highest level of management and must infect middle management and the general workforce like a virus. Kaizen will forever change the manager-worker relationship. Traditionally,

Obeya – The Lean War Room

What is an Obeya? An Obeya room is a major component of Lean manufacturing and Lean-thinking strategies. Originally stemming from the Toyota Production System (TPS), “Obeya” is a Japanese term meaning big room and is often nicknamed the “war room”. The Obeya is a physical space to establish goals, generate ideas, and collaborate will managers.

5S The Best Lean Starting Point? Yep, And Here’s Why

5s Workstation

Why 5S first? Let’s be honest, there are many discussions out there such as 5S Lean groups on LinkedIn and other professional sites which sometimes fail to hit the mark for pertinent and useful information. In fact, I have even stumbled upon backwards or even misguided information, while others have just been too drawn out

Visual Mapping Strategies, A Mess of Options

Visual Mapping

Visual Mapping and Flow Charts Ever wondered what the differences between things like flow charts and process maps were? Are they actually different at all or are they just different names for more or less the same thing? What problems do each address? When should you use one over the other? If you have ever