5 Things to Avoid During a Kaizen

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, …

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Waste 101

No More Waste All things aside, waste reduction is the main ingredient to lean practices. No matter how you break it down if you can’t identify and evaluate waste properly, you can’t establish a platform to improve upon. It’s a continuous process to target waste and eliminate non-value-adding value, but this ultimately how you increase the value of your goods and services. Lean implementers often turn to one of the now several waste categories to …

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Gemba 101

gemba 101

Gemba (sometimes referred to as genba) has become one of the most commonly used words in the lean vocabulary, right up there with Kaizen and 5S. The adoption of Gemba principles into your lean culture has the potential to add numerous benefits to your continuous improvement. It’s recent rise in lean fame has come with some confusion and misinterpretation as well. As with any lean principle, it is important to fully understand the term and …

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Leadership Drives Kaizen

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 …

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A Kaizen Story

Kaizen Event

When a large manufacturing plant in Iowa decided to implement Kaizen into their facilities they had plenty of questions and hurdles to overcome. The organization, which produces agricultural and construction-related equipment saw the continuous improvement process known as Kaizen as a means to improve business. The process for them didn’t come easy and creating a sustainable process became a challenge, but a Kaizen story like any story, is always good to review. The following information …

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Change is Necessary

As the old saying goes, “the only thing that stays the same is, everything’s changing.”  This is extremely true in business environments, and when companies start to become stagnant, negative change begins creeping in. Companies need to understand that when it comes to change there are two main types. Those which are controlled and guided by the company, and those which are controlling the company from the outside. It is, of course, essential to control …

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Toyota Donates What Money Couldn’t Buy: Efficiency

Food Drive Box

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 …

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Kaizen Safety Cross

Not Your Average Safety Calendar I recently stumbled upon the Kaizen Safety Cross and found the concept to be an efficient and creative way to regulate your workplace safety program. There’s never a bad time to talk about safety in the workplace. As our habits harden into our molds, we often overlook the little things we do everyday that could be a threat to our safety and others. However, unlike other facets of our business …

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What is Catchball

Boston Red Sox

The technical definition of Catchball is “A lean system to greatly improve bi-directional feedback and ownership – especially for complex decision making and policy deployment.”  While that is a nice description of what catchball is, it doesn’t really get into why it is so important, how it can benefit a team or even how it should be implemented.  Understanding these things about the catchball process can help companies better implement it into their decision making …

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The Vacation Paradox

Tropical paradise and vacation pic

Sunshine Daydreams You’re 48 hours away from that dream vacation you’ve waited all year for. Soon the ocean breeze will calm your soul and wisp away any worries of your day-to-day life while your toes bask in the warm sand and Bob Marley tracks play in the background. But wait, remember you still have 48 hours left, which means two full days of work and a ton of stuff to get done! –Enter the Vacation …

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