Going Lean: Push vs Pull Production

Pull system in a facility

2 min read Lean manufacturing aims to eliminate wastes and improve productivity, primarily by operating on a pull system known as just-in-time (JIT) production. The JIT method is opposite to push systems on the spectrum of supply chain management and can often be the barrier for a company going Lean. In a push system, production is scheduled to meet the forecasted rate of demand. Also known as mass production, the push method has been around for centuries and …

Read more

What is Kaikaku?

Hand writing Time to Improve concept with red marker on transparent wipe board.

3 min read When most people think of Lean ideologies and methodologies, they think of kaizen and continuous improvement first. However as one moves deeper into Lean, you begin to add new vocabulary and processes to your Lean tool bag. Today’s word of the day: kaikaku. Most that know or have heard of kaizen think of it as a slow continuous improvement that is necessary to sustain a successful operation. Kaikaku, on the other hand, translates to “radical …

Read more

Vocoli Takes Suggestion Box To New Level

Ideas out of the box concept on green blackboard

3 min read Has Vocoli saved the suggestion box? The traditional suggestion box has long been thought of as a thing of the past. The dusty wood box that no one can usually find, sitting with a couple of broken pencils and some half doodled pieces of paper, has been in desperate need of an upgrade for years. Vocoli, a product of a Brighton-based Web development firm Massachusetts Technology Corp, was launched in September and is attempting change …

Read more

Hansei 101

Hansei reflections

3 min read We are reminded time and time again (and rightfully so), Lean is about culture. It is a crucial part and in most cases, the backbone of any Lean organization. A culture that believes in continuous improvement and practices what they preach day in and day out, is the key to sustaining Lean. What’s less talked about, is what goes into a culture that allows it to gain the strength needed to sustain an organization’s Lean …

Read more

Money Can’t Buy Continuous Improvement

3 min read Money Can’t Buy Me… Money can buy a lot of things. Those with and without money, have various opinions on happiness, love and the power that wealth brings. Throughout time, money has allowed individuals and organizations to do both good and bad with their financial power. However, there are somethings in life and business that simply have no price tag. From the outside looking in, the success of continuous improvement (Kaizen) is often mistaken for …

Read more

Jishuken 101

jishuken measuring process eliminating waste

3 min read What is Jishuken? For those that work in a Lean inspired organization, the term “kaizen” is one of the more popular terms heard when someone talks about improvement. Kaizen though, is more of a philosophy than an actual activity. Jishuken however, is an actual activity within the kaizen philosophy that is driven by management and involves identifying specific areas in need of continuous improvement. An easy way to think of jishuken is to think of …

Read more

Mistakes Kaizen Teams Make

3 min read Kaizen teams are an extremely effective way to produce great results, come up with excellent ideas, and foster change in just about any organization. Most people who are a part of these teams will attend Kaizen events and come away feeling energized, motivated and ready to improve the workplace. The problem often comes when they get back to the office and find that very little is actually changing. There are several key mistakes that are …

Read more

5 Things to Avoid During a Kaizen

2 min read Kaizen events are an important tool for any company that is attempting to go through a lean transformation, or simply wants to improve the way they are doing things. Lean events are typically short, intense sessions which help to quickly change the way specific things are done. ¬†When managed well, these events can have dramatic results, which greatly benefit the entire department or facility. When poorly run, however, they can be a waste of time, …

Read more

Leadership Drives Kaizen

2 min read Companies which use Kaizen initiatives to help correct problems or make other improvements often find that they can be extremely successful. These types of short term, focused events can help companies of all types overcome issues which would otherwise take weeks or months to address. When the Kaizen process is embraced by leadership, it is possible to plan and schedule multiple Kaizen events in different areas of a company at once. This is best done …

Read more

Toyota Donates What Money Couldn’t Buy: Efficiency

Food Drive Box

3 min read The Food Bank For New York City is one of the country’s largest food banks. Their effort to reach the nearly 2.6 million New Yorkers who experience difficulty affording food does not go unnoticed. Some of the biggest corporate names have reached out to financially support the Food Bank including Bank of America, Disney, FedEx, the Yankees and many more, but Toyota decided to take another route. Instead of cash, Toyota donates what money couldn’t …

Read more