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The History and Origins of Kaizen: A Japanese Business Philosophy

Kaizen, the renowned Japanese business philosophy that has revolutionized industries worldwide, traces its roots back to Japan’s post-World War II era. Originating in the manufacturing sector, Kaizen’s principles have since transcended industry boundaries, shaping how businesses approach continuous improvement and efficiency. Emergence in Post-War Japan: The seeds of Kaizen were sown during Japan’s post-war reconstruction,

Applying The Key Principles of Kaizen

Kaizen, a Japanese term for “continuous improvement,” is powerful philosophy organizations embrace. As the next question arises – “What are the key principles of Kaizen and how to apply them?” – this article will delve into the core principles of Kaizen and provide insights on their practical application to drive continuous improvement in your organization.

Going to the Gemba

The term Gemba comes from Japan. It is translated to mean the actual place, or the place where something happened. When it comes to the workplace, the concept of Gemba is used specifically for encouraging supervisors, managers, and others in leadership to spend time not only in their offices but also out on the shop

Effective Lean Problem Solving

Business Meeting

Solving problems in a business setting is an important part of the Lean methodology. Using Lean strategies, a company can better identify what problems exist, pinpoint the root causes, and come up with the right solutions to get the best results. Learning about how to effectively use Lean problem-solving techniques can help any business to

Continuous Improvement Tools

To achieve success with Kaizen – the Japanese philosophy of change for the better – it’s beneficial to adopt some of the tools in the continuous improvement toolbox. Kaizen Newspaper A kaizen newspaper is a document that lists current ideas, problems, solutions, and responsible parties. The newspaper is usually in spreadsheet or chart format and

Going Lean: Push vs Pull Production

Pull system in a facility

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

Muda, Mura, and Muri: The Three Wastes

Identifying waste using the 3 Ms can help you more easily set goals and create conditions that avoid unnecessary repetition of efforts (muda), unevenness of those efforts (mura), or efforts that cause strain (muri). By focusing improvement activities on eliminating the non-value-adding parts of the production process, balance between capacity and load can be achieved.

Kaizen Case Study: Siemens Oostkamp

kaizen case study

Siemens Oostkamp produces electronic components such as relays, connectors, and coils. The combination of fewer orders from their parent company and increasingly intense global competition forced them to look for new markets. On his first tour of the plant, the kaizen consultant asked the supervisors if specific information was available, such as failure rate or

A Lean Transformation: Tool Organization

Organized Wrenches

Going Lean means implementing a culture of continuous improvement, and constantly try to identify and eliminate the 8 types of waste: defects, waiting time, extra motion, excess inventory, overproduction, extra processing, unnecessary transportation, and unutilized talents. It’s critical in Lean to evaluate all areas in a facility for waste, even less obvious ones. One area