Category Archives: Lean

What really is Lean Procurement?

Lean enterprise principles and practices have been widely adopted in many companies and continue to enjoy strong support. Many organizations have realized incredible gains such as faster cycle times, reduced costs, higher quality and increased customer satisfaction. The lean movement …

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Remove waste to improve customer-supplier performance

It’s time to remove waste to improve customer-supplier performance. You don’t have to look very far to find a lot of waste in the customer-supplier relationship. You may think that the way a supplier operates its business is the supplier’s

Posted in Lean, Supplier Relationship Management (SRM) | Leave a comment

Lean procurement: eliminate waste, but don't neglect to add value

What really is lean procurement? From some of the descriptions of lean procurement that I’ve seen, it seems to have morphed into something that is either myopically focused and/or totally unrecognizable as lean to me. Let’s start with myopically focused.  …

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Desert islands of excellence

Several years ago I penned a rant for Spend Matters about tool heads. What are tool heads? I define them as those people who focus on the tools of continuous improvement such as lean tools and Six Sigma tools …

Posted in continuous improvement, Lean | 2 Comments

It's only a game: capitalizing on your employees' knowledge

One of the guiding principles in continuous improvement methodologies such as lean enterprise and total quality management is employee involvement: those who do the work know it best and will be able to make improvements. In other words, management is …

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Are Toyota's Troubles Tainting Lean?

As part of the public flogging of Toyota for its massive quality problems and recalls, some are calling lean and the Toyota Production System into question. A recent WSJ article, How Lean Manufacturing Can Backfire, describes how Toyota’s use …

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Is Toyota's Brand Getting Rusty?

Yesterday Toyota announced that it is recalling 110,000 Tundra trucks built in 2000-2003 due to rust on the frames that is causing the spare tire to break off. Toyota is blaming a supplier, Dana Corporation, manufacturer of the cross member …

Posted in Lean, Quality, Supply Management | Tagged , | 2 Comments

The Lean Office: Pushing the Envelope – Efficiently

Several weeks ago I had the opportunity to tour Fidelity Investment’s Cincinnati operations as one of the lean tours at the AME Lean Conference. If you’re a Fidelity customer, you may have noticed that most of your mailings including statements, …

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A Supplier Development Advantage

I recently gave a workshop on supplier evaluation in a lean environment as part of the AME Lean Conference. Because the attendees of my workshop already had a working knowledge of lean principles and practices, they were quite different from …

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You Know You're At a Lean Conference When…

Attending the annual AME Lean Conference was energizing and inspiring. The conference delegates are a different crowd. They are practitioners of the lean enterprise. This is apparent if you spend any time with these folks.

You know you’re at …

Posted in Business, Lean, Manufacturing | 3 Comments