Lean Article

Laurel Thoennes @ Quality Digest’s picture

By: Laurel Thoennes @ Quality Digest

In the foreword of Mark Graban’s book, Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More (Constancy Inc., 2018), renowned statistician, Donald J. Wheeler, writes about Graban: “He has created a guide for using and understanding the data that surround us every day.

Mike Richman’s picture

By: Mike Richman

With more than 110,000 expected attendees, IMTS is Chicago’s hottest suburb this week. (I like to refer to it as “Manufactureville.”) Here’s what we covered during our second show of the week, from the booth of today’s sponsor, Q-Mark Manufacturing:

“Tapping Your Employee’s Knowledge”

It’s no secret that the employees closest to a process know best how to improve it. But how do you tap that knowledge without ruffling feathers?

Mark Rosenthal’s picture

By: Mark Rosenthal

During a TED talk, Amy Edmondson, the Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management at Harvard Business School, talks about “How to turn a group of strangers into a team.” Although long-standing teams are able to perform, our workplaces today require ad-hoc collaboration between diverse groups. The question is: What kind of leadership, and what kind of structure, contribute to working together on the problem?

Jared Evans’s picture

By: Jared Evans

Implementing 6S, the lean strategy for reducing waste and optimizing efficiency in a manufacturing environment, is more than just creating work protocols that people must follow. Because that’s the thing about people: If they don’t know the “why,” they are less likely to buy in to any initiative, especially one that requires significant changes in the way they work and think, simply because they “must.”

Hélène Horent’s picture

By: Hélène Horent

Founded in 1947, in Veles, Macedonia, BRAKO produces parts and components used in medical devices, road sweeper trucks, airport ground equipment, forklift accessories, metal-welded constructions, small hydro plants, telecommunications shelters, and antenna towers.

Ryan E. Day’s picture

By: Ryan E. Day

As manufacturing finds its way through the 21st century, there’s a groundswell change emerging. Organizations are jockeying for competitive position as they endeavor to describe this phenomenon. Industry 4.0, the fourth industrial revolution, and the industrial internet of things (IIoT) are a few terms being tried on for size. Although the current transition is enabled by technology, there is a timeless underlying impetus: productivity.

Ryan E. Day’s picture

By: Ryan E. Day

‘In God we trust; all others bring data.” “Follow the data.” “Let the data talk.” Nice clichés, but there’s one problem... data can’t talk. In fact, data don’t say a darn thing. Data are bits of raw information. If you want to reduce product variation, improve your manufacturing processes, and increase profits, you need to interrogate and analyze your data.

Glenn S. Wolfgang’s picture

By: Glenn S. Wolfgang

Flow quality management (Flow QM) is a logistical alternative to handling product in lots for the purpose of assessing and mitigating defects. It features a streamlined, automated acceptance sampling methodology, is built on empirical metrics, and facilitates timely, meaningful performance monitoring and management.

William A. Levinson’s picture

By: William A. Levinson

Quality and manufacturing practitioners are most familiar with the effect of variation on product quality, and this is still the focus of the quality management and Six Sigma bodies of knowledge. Other forms of variation are, however, equally important—in terms of their ability to cause what Prussian general Carl von Clausewitz called friction, a form of muda, or waste—in production control and also many service-related activities. This article shows how variation affects the latter as well as the former applications.

Jane Stull’s picture

By: Jane Stull

As companies seek to gain efficiencies in the workplace, provide choice for employees, and attract and retain talent, strategies involving agile working and free-address have gained traction. When our Gensler La Crosse office relocated last year, we leveraged the opportunity to support an agile workplace strategy. Although there are arguments for and against agile working, here’s what I’ve experienced firsthand.

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