As a Master Black Belt I teach Lean Six Sigma courses and often provide definitions of common terms. One such term is “value” which I define as the ratio between quality and price (value = quality/price).
“It may sound like an older version of the iPhone,” writes Dean Marsman in Quality, “but it’s actually a very simple and helpful system that can make the fundamentals of lean manufacturing even clearer to both business owners and employees.”
Quality professionals see many costs of quality firsthand. These include our salaries and benefits, the equipment used to measure and analyze quality outcomes, and the waste generated by these processes when they fail to meet requirements.
Sometimes adopting lean manufacturing means adding more people to a process. Eric Ethington, a lean product and process development coach, previously worked in the auto supply business. In a pump assembly product line, the typical cell had six operators.
I was recently retaught a lesson that, ironically, I teach for a living. The consulting firm I work in covers not only lean, but also consults and guides clients along with building and improving their quality management systems.
Empowered employees are critical to Six Sigma’s success.
August 13, 2019
Successful Six Sigma organizations create a culture of participation by giving their staff a compelling mission, then giving them the support, resources, and flexibility to achieve that mission—and seek other opportunities for improvement.
Take time to define continuous improvement for your manufacturing organization.
August 13, 2019
Pursuing the lofty goal of Zero Defects delivers undeniable benefits in the form of reduced waste and cost, happier customers, bigger sales, and higher revenue. But that implied level of perfection is not always realistic. Instead, establish a culture of continuous improvement.
In a lean manufacturing process, a poka-yoke method is employed to eliminate product defects by preventing, correcting, or drawing attention to human errors in real time. Industrial engineer Shigeo Shingo first applied the term poka-yoke (“mistake-proofing” in Japanese) to the Toyota Production System.
Lean and agile can work alone but can be very powerful together.
May 15, 2019
Lean and agile are well recognized in the manufacturing sector and in the quality community. Like many quality methodologies, lean and agile work in tandem and separately, depending on an organization’s needs. Where do these methodologies meet and diverge, what are their driving principles, and how you can add them to your toolbox (or convince others to do so)?