Almost Standard Work: 6 Pieces, 5 Steps and 3 Mistakes

[tweetmeme source=”leanisgood” service=”ow.ly” only_single=false]Several weeks ago I posted an article related to building a pinewood derby car. After superior engineering, cutting edge tribology and a monster paint job, we didn’t bring anything home except the car and hopes of a better race next year. So our next project was at Lowe’s. Continue reading

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The Checklist Manifesto: A Book Review

[tweetmeme source=”leanisgood” service=”ow.ly” only_single=false]The Checklist Manifesto | Atul Gawande | Metropolitan Books

What are your thoughts on checklists? I know I have used them in the past with limited success. The new book by Atul Gawande titled “The Checklist Manifesto” may change your beliefs about checklists and what their limits and uses are.

The author uses airline pilots, construction sites, restaurants, and hospitals as well as brief discussions of other areas that checklists have been fundamental in improving performance.

What the aviation industry found was that there were a couple of reasons why there were accidents and failures. One was that people were so well trained and so focused on what they were doing, they did not focus on some of the more mundane and ancillary processes that could be just as important. Continue reading

Pinewood Derby Cars, Standard Work and Training

[tweetmeme source="leanisgood" service="ow.ly"]It is Pinewood Derby Car season and working with a 6 year old who wants to use a coping saw, spray paint, and lead weights just sends chills down my spine. One thing that is helping get me through this process without a mental meltdown or trip to the hospital is reflecting on how a new associate, the 6 year old mentioned above, and I, the supposed reasonable adult or Supervisor go through the derby car making process and how Standard Work and training would help the manufacture of the car, calm my nerves, and make a more enjoyable experience for everyone. Continue reading

Lean – Keep it Simple

Image Source - Wikimedia Commons

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How many times have you walked on the site floor with banners about lean and banishing waste and then trip over a pallet or had to pick-up trash on the floor? Have you ever had someone talk to you about OEE and TPM while you look over and see employees without the correct tools or standard work or a clean work area?

I am not a fan of new acronyms or catch phrases but when I see a situation like this, Continue reading