In order to successfully implement Lean manufacturing, you need to have the leadership exercising Lean management strategies. This is when leaders push the concept of continuous improvement and waste elimination from the top down. It is not sufficient just to have one Lean manager driving the concepts of Lean manufacturing throughout the facility.
Instead, every leader from the CEO of the company down to a front-line supervisor needs to be on board with this strategy. Having an entire leadership team focused on constantly making improvements will set a great standard for everyone to follow. Of course, when all the leadership is on board, it will be much easier to ensure all the employers are also supporting these processes.
Just like Lean manufacturing, Lean management is all about eliminating waste. When a manager becomes aware of any type of waste in the facility, they should make it a priority to discover the root cause and get rid of it. If it is a type of waste that may be present in other departments as well, they can share this information so that it can be eliminated there too.
Guiding Concepts for Lean Management
When looking at Lean management strategies, it usually comes down to following four specific steps. They are as follows:
- Defining Value – Managers must be aware of what the value is of the product they are working on. This means knowing what the end customer wants in the products they are creating.
- Understanding the Process – All managers should be very familiar with all the steps taken in the production of any product. This includes the manufacturing process. By becoming familiar with these processes it is possible to identify waste and cut it out.
- Focusing on Value – A Lean manager will be able to identify all the value adding steps in the production process, and make sure they are the focus. Anything that isn’t directly adding value should be eliminated if possible, or streamlined if not.
- Repeat – Repeat the first three steps continuously so you can always become better and better at getting things done efficiently.
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- What is Lean manufacturing?