Process Tools & Techniques

Process Tools & Techniques

Research shows that less than 37% of Lean training and improvements produce meaningful and measurable results unless there has been a complete corporate culture change to Lean thinking. Genchi Genbutsu (GO SEE) is the only way to build and sustain a Lean culture.

gemba-kaizen-masaaki-imai Gemba Kaizen: A Commonsense, Low-Cost Approach to Management by Masaaki Imai. As a practitioner and instructor of Lean, I recommend this book a lot. Gemba is a vitally important concept that often gets overlooked or gets overshadowed by our data, especially in an increasingly e-driven world. Gemba Kaizen is especially useful for engineers and supervisors, who may not have extensive TPS experience, who need a practical guide.


leading manufacturing Leading Manufacturing Excellence: A Guide to State-of-the-Art Manufacturing by Patricia Moody is a guide to state-of-the-art manufacturing implementation focusing on, among other things, visual management and Kaizen, and provides a comprehensive framework for application to your own organization.


The Kaizen Blitz The Kaizen Blitz: Accelerating Breakthroughs in Productivity and Performance by Laraia, Hall & Moody is the "bible" on Kaizen BlitzT, AME's powerful version of kaizen---a process for achieving continuous improvement in an organization. The book shows you how to use this remarkable tool to achieve breakthrough results in your company. If you are looking for dramatic improvement in a short time, read and apply Kaizen.


Kaizen Teian KAIZEN TEIAN 2: Guiding Continuous Improvement Through Employee Suggestions (No. 2), edited by Japan Human Relations Association, is a wonderful little book on continuous improvement suggestion systems based on the management concepts of Kaizen---meaning small, simple, incremental improvements and Teian-meaning development of employees through idea proposal. This approach stands in dark contrast to traditional suggestion systems that measure success relative to cost savings.


Perhaps you'd like to read about the application of a specific Lean strategy, such as Value Stream Mapping (VSM). Every Value stream can be mapped following the information available in these books.

For the Lean office:

Value Stream Lean Office Value Stream Management for the Lean Office: Eight Steps to Planning, Mapping, and Sustaining Lean Improvements in Administrative Areas by Tapping and Shuker addresses Lean in office or administrative processes and provides a wonderful guide to standardizing Lean office improvements in a structured, proven way through Value Stream Management. Tapping and Shuker illustrate, in a simple and effective way, the fundamental Lean concepts of demand, flow and leveling (as they relate to administrative areas) that will result in the development of a Lean office. VSM is a process for planning and linking Lean initiatives through systematic data capture and analysis.


For Lean production:

Learning to see Learning to See: Value Stream Mapping to Add Value and Eliminate MUDA by Womack, Rother and Shook is critical to your Lean library. It is practical and easily understood, but more important, it focuses attention on the "value stream" for products and families of products. Instead of focusing attention on isolated processes along the value stream (or aggregated activities serving many value streams), practitioners can now see clearly how to optimize the flow of each product from receiving to shipping.

For those wanting to create a Value Stream Map beyond the boundaries of the factory — upstream into the supply chain or downstream into distribution and customer fulfillment — please consider the companion book...


Seeing The Whole Seeing the Whole: Mapping the Extended Value Stream (Lean Enterprise Institute) by Jones & Womack. Wherever there is an exchange of information, there is a process. Likewise, whenever there is a product or service for a customer, there is a value stream. The challenge lies in seeing it. This book moves the reader beyond seeing value streams in individual facilities to seeing and optimizing entire values streams downstream through the customer and upstream through the supplier.


5 Pillars of Visual Workplace 5 Pillars of the Visual Workplace (For Your Organization!) by H Hirano. The 5 Pillars described in this book are the 5S's derived from the Toyota Production System (Organization, Orderliness, Cleanliness, Organized Cleanup and Discipline). The 5S's help lay a solid foundation for the implementation of Lean in any plant or office.


"This book is a must read!"

Brigid Pelino, EVP,
WestJet Airlines