Building a culture of continuous improvement won’t happen overnight, but the small, daily improvements add up to major sustainable success over time.

Continuous improvement is the core of the TPS philosophy Kaizen, and the concept was critical to the development of Lean manufacturing. Virtually every single Lean tool and technique is grounded in some way to continuous improvement.

  • Plan-Do-Check-Act: The PDCA cycle is the powerful Kaizen framework for solving problems, making changes, or executing projects. The four-step approach has teams test solutions and analyze results, cycling back to the planning stage.
  • Root Cause Analysis: Problems are not truly solved until the root of the issue has been addressed. The five whys and fishbone diagram are two ways to get to the bottom of the problem while promoting the continuous improvement mindset.
  • Gemba: "Going to the Gemba" means getting your boots to the ground and going to the place where things are happening. Regular Gemba walks demonstrate commitment from upper management and should encourage workers to share their improvement ideas.
  • Value Stream Mapping: VSMs show a holistic overview of how a production line is currently running, giving users the opportunity to create a future state value stream. Future value stream maps urge organizations to adopt best practices, and the seed of continuous improvement is planted.

It’s also important to adopt a continuous improvement mindset when it comes to workplace safety. Conducting periodic reviews, annual audits, and regularly checking in with workers about safety greatly improves participation while reducing the likelihood of injury or illness.

At Creative Safety Supply, we are dedicated to helping workplaces become more efficient. We have the resources to get you started: in-depth guides, expert-written articles, podcasts with Lean professionals, and so much more.

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Continuous Improvement Articles

6S: Safety

6S: Safety

Safety is the additional sixth step to the traditional 5S method. A company that implements 6S focuses on improving organization and efficiency, with an emphasis on safety throughout each step.

Quality Control

Quality Control

Quality Control helps ensure products are meeting customer needs and reduce the risk of product defects. Let this article help get you started.

Kaizen and Lean Manufacturing

Kaizen and Lean Manufacturing

Going “Lean” is all about continuous improvement. Kaizen gives Lean manufacturers the tools and strategies they need to identify wastes in their facility and effectively eliminate them.

A Brief History of Kaizen: The Key Players

A Brief History of Kaizen: The Key Players

Kaizen has been shaped over the years by an automobile manufacturer, American statisticians, influential businessmen, and more. We explore who had a hand in creating Kaizen and how it has developed into the philosophy we know today.

An In-Depth History of the Kaizen PDCA Cycle

An In-Depth History of the Kaizen PDCA Cycle

Lean organizations focus on improving all parts of a process from start to finish in order to increase the quality of the results. Through the use of specific cycles (like PDCA), organizations can improve the processes and end products.

ISO 9001: 2015

ISO 9001: 2015

ISO 9001: 2015 is a standard that outlines and defines requirements for a quality management systems. This QMS certification allows companies to demonstrate to clients that they take quality and efficiency seriously.

DMAIC Cycle

DMAIC Cycle

The DMAIC cycle is the foundational method of Six Sigma, the Lean manufacturing method that radically reduces defects in production and infinitely improves efficiency. Learn how to implement Six Sigma into your facility with DMAIC.

Statistical Process Control (SPC) in Manufacturing

Statistical Process Control (SPC) in Manufacturing

Statistical Process Control also known as SPC, is a term used in quality control. Find out how you can use this continuous improvement method.

Learning and Implementing the Lean Process

Learning and Implementing the Lean Process

Learning the basics about the lean process is essential when implementing continuous improvement changes. We have broken down the lean process so its easy to understand.

Focusing on Continuous Improvement in the Workplace

Focusing on Continuous Improvement in the Workplace

Facilities that focus on continuous improvement become more competitive over time and can maintain their advantages in their industry, but only if the improvement efforts are done correctly.

Getting Started with Kaizen

Getting Started with Kaizen

Proper training is key for getting started with Kaizen and on the road to continuous improvement.


Continuous Improvement Blog Posts

Continuous Improvement Podcasts

Continuous improvement can make a process better, improve safety and save dollars. But it's a waste of time if the… 

Lean IT expert Steve Bell helps solve the long-standing battle between a company’s goal of Continuous Improvement and the perceived… 

Continuous improvement is best started with management on board. Expert in the field, Jeff Hajek, describes the structure a company… 

Lean success means increasing safety and efficiency. Yes, improve operations and save money simultaneously. Lean implementer Matt Wrye explains how. Matt… 

Kaizen events that rock—time to increase efficiency in your organization! Lean/Six Sigma expert Mark Hamel tells of how to implement… 

Why do workers resist lean culture? Lean methodology expert Karen Wilhelm explains why employees are often suspicious of lean, and… 

Owners and managers—the bosses—don’t often like change. Try “continuous improvement” to improve safety and efficiency. Start with no budget, in… 

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