In the previous installment of our blog series, we addressed how Lean manufacturing can foster positive changes in company culture. Higher morale, greater trust, better camaraderie – but how does Lean methodology really create the respect employees crave?
As with any sector, manufacturing boasts leaders with an array of personal backgrounds and management styles. Those wanting to implement Lean as part of their operations are often looking for solutions to their short-term challenges, and whether it’s about meeting quota, enhancing equipment, or doing more with less talent, it’s important to think of employees as people instead of mere resources.
Lean expert David Veech, a co-founder and former Executive Director of the Institute of Lean Systems, notes while drastic changes in operations can be a stressful process, morale should not be sacrificed in favor of efficiency.
“Lean is a people-focused system based on a simple system: No one knows the work better than the people who do it,” Veech said in a guest entry for LeanBlog.org. “Lean emphasizes educating and cross-training workers and letting those who are closest to the work design the system.”
Lean systems go far beyond basic methodologies of efficiency and streamlining. People are transformed as well as systems, and the standardization of processes can level workloads and even reduce everyday stress if implemented correctly.
Deploying Lean is no easy feat, and it can be made even more difficult if workers are unsupportive or lukewarm on the idea. However, giving employees the opportunity to offer input or participate in discussions can cultivate commitment – a necessary element for a culture of continuous improvement.
“All of this is not to say Lean transformation is easy,” Veech said. “Extensive training and education are needed at all levels… But the results are well worth it.”
Want to know how MAGNET’s Lean experts can help you improve your company? Call Linda Barita at 216.391.7766 or email email@example.com to set up a consultation!
MAGNET is a part of Ohio MEP, part of the NIST-MEP program.
One remarkable thing about the list is that it rarely changes. The order may change but the top cited standards typically don’t change. Top 10 Sited Safety and Health Violations: 501 - Fall Protection 1200 - Hazard Communication 451 - Scaffolding 134 - Respiratory Protection 147 - Lockout/Tagout 178 - Powered Industrial Trucks 1053 - Ladders 305 - Electrical, Wiring Methods 212 - Machine Guarding 303 - Electrical, General Requirements Three of the 10 sited standards are directed at the construction standard (1926) while other fall within the general industry (1910). It should be noted however that the general industry standard also has fall protection guidelines. Year after year, inspectors see the same on-the-job hazards, any one of which could result in a fatality or severe injury. More than 4,500 workers are killed on the job every year, and approximately 3 million are injured. By understanding these regulations you can improve your safety program and prevent injuries. Give me a call if you have any compliance doubts, or want to review OHSA regulations. Gwido Dlugopolsky at 216-391-7766 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Why does it take a NASCAR pit crew only 15 seconds to change four car tires when it takes people like you and me minutes? The answer is simple SMED. Single Minute Exchange of Dies, or SMED, is a process for reducing the time it takes to do equipment changeovers. Using the principles of SMED you should be able to perform any changeover in your facility in under 10 minutes! The SMED process is simple – convert as many changeover steps as possible to “external”, meaning they are done while your equipment is still RUNNING, while simplifying and streamlining the remaining steps. SMED is broken down into the following 3 Steps: Separate Convert Streamline We found this article to be very helping in explaining the SMED process in more detail: LEAN PRODUCTION - SMED A good first step to achieve this level of SMED efficiency would be to run a kaizen event at your facility to standardize (5S) your tools and supplies. Doing this alone will help you achieve 40% to 50% greater efficiency. Once the “low hanging fruit” is gone, you can still reduce setup times another 20% by practicing more advanced SMED principles.
The secret to closing any sale is to reduce uncertainty in the buyer and replace it with confidence in YOU, your PRODUCT/SERVICE, and your COMPANY. Step 1 – Confidence in YOU Someone buying from you wants to be able to fundamentally connect with you on a human level and feel confident that you’re an expert in what you’re selling If you’re selling paperclips, be an expert in paperclips If you’re selling design and engineering related services, be an expert in design and engineering related services Focus on addressing the problem, not the solution….MEANING you already know you have the solution, connect with the buyer by being an expert with the problem he/she is facing. Prove that you know the problem and all aspects of the problem like the back of your hand. Step 2- Confidence in the PRODUCT/SERVICE you are selling Someone buying from you needs to trust the product/service you are selling will solve their problem. It’s your responsibility to deliver a solution and the benefits associated with it. Basically you need to “Hit a Homerun” communicating this message. Tip – Use Success Stories: Share with the potential buyer examples of your product/service solving problems and delivering value for