Lean Frees Improvement

Lean Frees Improvement

Force field analysis is a fantastic change management tool. It also beautifully encapsulates the difference between Lean and traditional improvement approaches. A force field analysis diagram looks like this: Force field analysis is useful whenever you want to improve...
Funnel Lean Savings in More Customer Value (NOT Lower Prices)

Funnel Lean Savings in More Customer Value (NOT Lower Prices)

People focus too much on Lean as a way to reduce costs. Yes, that’s frequently one result, but Lean, at its core, is about creating more customer/patient value. Show ‘Em the LUV The perfect example is Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV). You’ll never see the word ‘Lean’ on...
Lean is Hope (But Not Like This)

Lean is Hope (But Not Like This)

Lean is hope, but not in the sense of ‘I hope things get better.’ That’s hope as powerlessness. Lean is powerful. I got thinking about this after writing my post The Road to Lean, Part 2: Improvement Cultures. Different improvement approaches create different business...
Cutting Out Waste (or Cutting Your Own Throat)?

Cutting Out Waste (or Cutting Your Own Throat)?

In an earlier post, Small Wastes Get Big Quickly, my Lean Waste Calculator showed you how the minutes that employees are forced to waste to accomplish work quickly turn into thousands of hours for the organization as a whole. These equate to full-time employees NOT...
Focus on Value (Sales), Not Bureaucracy (Returns)

Focus on Value (Sales), Not Bureaucracy (Returns)

My recent experience returning a pair of shoes to Nordstrom was a perfect example of a company understanding my blog post, Small Wastes Get BIG Quickly. Nordstrom doesn’t actually have a formal return policy. Here’s what they say on their website about returns and...
The Great Training Robbery

The Great Training Robbery

I’d love to take credit for this provocative title, but, sadly, I can’t. This phrase was first used 45 years ago when a study showing little or no relationship between training and work performance was published. Most recently, it was used this past August for the...