Management attention as a constraint – Part 1

A system’s constraint, the limiting factor that is an obstacle to getting more Goal units* from the system, can be pretty difficult to identify (hence the success of my post on the topic: How to identify a constraint?!). *”Goal units” can be money, profit, services to citizens, number of patients treated, free meals served, or whatever … Continue reading Management attention as a constraint – Part 1

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The fallacy of bottom-up Lean initiatives – Part 3: top-down and bottom-up

In the first post of this series, I explained why bottom-up Lean initiatives have little chance to succeed. In the second post I switched the point of view and discussed the top-down driven Lean rollout attempts and their pitfalls. Neither is easy nor a sure way to succeed. In this third post it is time … Continue reading The fallacy of bottom-up Lean initiatives – Part 3: top-down and bottom-up

Goal Tree is a Lean tool

This post title may sound provocative to all readers knowing the Goal Tree origins lay with Theory of Constraints and to hardliners of each philosophy wanting to keep their toolbox clean of “imported” tools, yet it won’t change the fact that a Goal Tree is a Lean tool. 1. Goal Tree as its name tells … Continue reading Goal Tree is a Lean tool

Goal Tree Chronicles – from Goal to action plan in a couple of hours

In a previous post I described the utilisation of a Goal Tree to order ideas when working on a small project, a part of a project or an improvement plan. In another post I gave answer to the question "is it worth the time and energy invested?". In this post I share my own benchmarks … Continue reading Goal Tree Chronicles – from Goal to action plan in a couple of hours

Cost and inventory reduction, right target?

Waste and costs reduction has almost become the definition of Lean for many people as well as an irresistible lure for most executives and managers. Yet costs and inventory reduction, is this the right target? In the various definitions proposed by Lean theorists, including Jim Womack, priority is given to identifying and creating value for … Continue reading Cost and inventory reduction, right target?

Goal tree chronicles – ToC is about focusing

This post is a post scriptum to the previous one of this series, relating how a Goal Tree could have helped a pharma plant. In this plant, top management selected more than 20 streams as strategic and worked to achieve the related objectives. The trouble with this approach is the vast number of objectives to … Continue reading Goal tree chronicles – ToC is about focusing

How Goal Tree can help Hoshin Kanri

Hoshin Kanri or policy deployment’s purpose is to focus and align all contributions on a limited number of necessary breakthroughs, in order to achieve the goal without diluting limited resources on minor on irrelevant subjects. The X-Matrix is used to breakdown the higher objectives, usually the breakthroughs, into smaller objectives and actions, setup the KPIs … Continue reading How Goal Tree can help Hoshin Kanri

What is Hoshin Kanri?

Hoshin Kanri or Hoshin planning, strategic planning or policy deployment is a method designed to focus and align all contributions of the organization’s staff on required breakthroughs in order to achieve the top strategic objectives. Lack of focus It is very common in all kind of organizations that people work a lot, spend energy and … Continue reading What is Hoshin Kanri?

Prerequisite Tree and Hoshin Kanri

During Lean Summit 2012, keynote speaker Laurie West promoted Lean transformation using Policy Deployment, another name of Hoshin Kanri. During his speech, Mr West listed five obstacles hindering the strategy deployment: People can’t implement something they don’t know People can’t implement properly something they don’t understand People can’t implement something they don’t stand for People … Continue reading Prerequisite Tree and Hoshin Kanri