Lean Engineering and the myth of multitasking

Multitasking is a praised ability in a world needing constant adjustments. Critics challenge the ability of humans to multitask, while others still believe in and praise it. I know for long time now that I am no good at multitasking and felt somewhat ungifted until the day I attended a training session in which an … Continue reading Lean Engineering and the myth of multitasking

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SMED explained while doing laundry – Part one

SMED is a systematic approach to quick changeovers in order to minimize machine downtime. >Lisez-moi en français To explain what SMED is good for to non-specialists discovering it, I use the laundry example. Let’s imagine the mundane washing machine is a very precious resource and it should wash (add value) as much as possible in … Continue reading SMED explained while doing laundry – Part one

What is operational excellence?

Operational excellence (OE) is a competitive advantage: it translates to increased production flexibility, improved customer responsiveness, and cost minimization. (Deloitte) “Operational Excellence is a philosophy of leadership, teamwork and problem solving resulting in continuous improvement throughout the organization by focusing on the needs of the customer, empowering employees, and optimizing existing activities in the process.” … Continue reading What is operational excellence?

What is SMED?

SMED stands for Single Minute Exchange of Die, a systematic approach to changeover and setup time reduction. SMED is an acronym that made its way into industrial lingo for decades now. Its origins is in japanese automotive industry of the 1950s when Toyota Production System pioneers led by legendary Shigeo Shingo observed operations on shop … Continue reading What is SMED?

Goal Tree – Stating the Critical Success Factors

A Goal Tree is the kind of simple looking yet tricky tool. Almost every time I explain the Tree principle and structure, my audience reacts with more or less subtle signs of impatience or disappointment meaning “is this all?”. Assuming the Goal is properly stated, which is far from being a given, when it comes … Continue reading Goal Tree – Stating the Critical Success Factors

Goal Tree for personal Goal

Goal Tree is a great tool to describe everything necessary to achieve a goal, from topmost objectives called Critical Success Factors (CSFs) to the underlying Necessary Conditions (NCs). All elements of a Goal Tree are linked together by a logical necessary condition relationship (in order to have... we must...), which is a powerful filter to … Continue reading Goal Tree for personal Goal

Goal Tree chronicles – four hours to fill six boxes

This Goal Tree session started early afternoon with the company’s top chief officers. While I explained the Goal Tree principle I could notice the usual grins meaning “You’ll get your tree filled in ten minutes, we perfectly know where we want to go and what must be done to get there”. "Well, then tell me … Continue reading Goal Tree chronicles – four hours to fill six boxes

One more management lesson from candy crush

In a previous post I wrote about parallels between candy crush and management practices, meanwhile I took another lesson while struggling to crush virtual candies. I was stuck in level 100 for a long time, long enough to feed me up and let me try to accumulate 2048 in a matrix, another addictive game you … Continue reading One more management lesson from candy crush

Downsides of kaizen events

In a previous post I explained what kaizen events are and ended it with some reservations. In this one I'll explain why. I am no opponent to kaizen events, I simply point out the deviations I have witnessed. >Lisez-moi en français kaizen events are quick actions performed in a very limited time, limited perimeter and focused … Continue reading Downsides of kaizen events

What is kaizen event?

You may know from a previous post that kaizen means continuous improvement. A kaizen event is a planned session for improvement on a limited perimeter, usually focused on a peculiar topic or issue and limited in time. A kaizen event lasts generally a week or less. Shorter kaizen events are often called kaizen blitz, a … Continue reading What is kaizen event?