Category: Organization Design and Process Improvement

Fast Cycle Lean and the Rebirth of American Manufacturing at GE’s Appliance Park

The return of jobs by GE to its Louisville Appliance Park is the best evidence yet of a new trend and it is important that every company engaged in manufacturing consider the key elements that make this a sound business decision. It is an example of “macro-lean”, the creation of processes that unite major functions in the organization.

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The Lean Culture Challenge: Can You Graduate from the 5S’s to The 7S’s that Really Matter?

Doing 5S is easy because it requires nothing of executives and very little if any change in the behavior of managers. It does not disrupt their world. And, that is exactly why it does not address the big issues that drive the culture and competitiveness of any organization. Real competitive advantage is derived from internal strategy, building the capabilities of the organization, and that requires managing the Big Seven S’s of organization culture.

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Teamwork at the Cleveland Clinic

Today’s New York Times editorial focuses on the advances made at the Cleveland Clinic through the development of teamwork across functions. Having long promoted teamwork, through both formal structures and changes in behavior, it is nice to see its importance recognized in the press.

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Lean and Meta Principles: The Unity Principle

Some companies have engaged in what they think are “lean implementations” by reducing lean to component parts and experimenting with one component over there, another over here, and a third somewhere else. That is guaranteed to fail. The very idea of reducing lean to its component parts fails to “get it.” I believe that the first principle of meta-lean is what I called in a previous book, The Unity Principle. Honda took this principle to heart and sought to apply it in their U.S. operations.

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