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Showing posts with the label lean

Do you have multiple strategies to meet customer demand?

Do you find that the workloads in your business are becoming more volatile? Do you find that what your business was used to doing on a regular basis and what it does now aren't the same? Many businesses are finding themselves with a lot more variety on their order books, especially in terms of how quickly customers want / expect things and the mix of the orders. So, how can you handle this?

New Kamishibai Board

One of my clients got their kamishibai board in place today and I thought I'd share a quick photo of it. This one is designed to help a team manage, and balance, their workload through a fixed period of time. It's a nice variation on the theme. Giles Johnston Author of Business Process Re-Engineering   and creator of the   ' Making It Happen '   online course for improving continuous improvement skills.

It's amazing what you find when you undertake 5S!

Today I was working with some of my client's staff on a 5S orientated project. In fact we were gearing up to implement a component Kanban for a busy factory, but the area needed to be organised first. So, we used the 5S approach, which we all remember as:

Free 'Kamishibai Boards' e-Book on Amazon Kindle

If you haven't read my book 'Kamishibai Boards' yet, it is free to download for the Amazon Kindle (and the free reading app) today and tomorrow (29th and 30th of July 2015). Here's the link - Giles Johnston Author of Business Process Re-Engineering

Visual Management Can Be Simple

I've just got back from holiday with my family and enjoyed a simple example of visual management in practice whilst away. We went on a boat trip where there were a few options on what route / trip you could take. When we got on the boat my family got a blue sticker attached to our t-shirts.

Kamishibai e-book free on Amazon today

My popular e-book ' Kamishibai Boards ' is free on Amazon between 9th June 2015 and 11th June 2015. It shares a step by step process to implement a simple visual management approach that can help businesses to form effective workplace habits. To view the book's details please visit: Giles Johnston Author of Business Process Re-Engineering

Sustaining 5S

One of the challenges I hear from businesses is with regards to sustaining 5S. If you haven't come across the 5S approach for improving workplace organisation it really is worth reading up on.

Making Daily Sunrise Meetings Effective

I was running a workshop yesterday about Sunrise Meetings . My client has a number of teams, all of which need to become more process driven, and short, standard, daily meetings are part of that equation. After discussing the types of questions that form good standard agendas, we got on to the topic of ' what do you do to get everyone involved? '

Do you find change a bit messy?

When you start out on a new path of change it can often be a little messy. The idea you have in your head doesn't always appear when you try the 'new thing' for the first time. As this is so true of many continuous improvements I thought I would share a few of my thoughts on the matter. When a business identifies improvements in its communication then some form of meeting is usually instigated to improve the said communication issue. I'm a big fan of standardised meetings. These are meetings that are focused on very specific outcomes, are usually as short as they possibly can be, and support the effective routines already defined by the business. Often the first few meetings bring up all kinds of additional issues that the business is facing. This noise can be distracting and it may take a few meetings to get past this confusing stage and into short productive meetings.

Forklift Truck Kamishibai Board

Kamishibai boards are one of the most popular searched for items on this blog. So, with that in mind, I couldn't leave Kev's kamishibai board out! Kev is a Team Leader at one of my clients and he has taken the idea of the red / green visual management approach to help communicate the state of the TPM of their forklift trucks. The wall above is in a very visible location in the factory grounds so that anyone can see the status. I love it, simple but effective. Kev, I salute you! Giles Johnston ...fixing MRP systems and re-engineering business processes

Just Admit To Your Production Losses

Last night whilst choosing something to watch on TV I caught part of an episode of 'Secret Eaters' on Channel 4. The part that I watched was where the so called secret eaters watched themselves in dismay as the real level of eating was revealed. Each time they saw themselves munching away on something they would provide a running commentary of "no, don't put that in your mouth", or similar. There is a parallel to running a business operation. If things aren't going as well as you hoped then you need to be honest and detail everything that isn't going well. When you do this you can fix your problems and improve your performance a lot more quickly.

Speeding Up Meetings

Meetings take up a lot of time in any business, don't they? Have you ever wondered: a) how much time they actually take up and cost the business? b) what would happen if they could be re-engineered?

Sunrise Book Now Available On iPad

My book 'Sunrise Meetings' has now made its way onto the other e-reader devices (including iPad, Nook and Kobo). If you are looking for some ideas on how to make your business run in a more systematic and clockwork fashion then this book is well worth a read. Click here for the PDF version . Click here for the Kindle version . Click here for other formats (including iPad) . Over the next couple of weeks it will also appear in iTunes / iBooks and the other online shopping sites for e-books. Giles Johnston Author of 'Business Process Re-Engineering', a practical plan to improve business performance.

Do You Like The Numbers?

When reviewing the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) of a business it can be uncomfortable for many people. When you are faced with the numbers of your business, in 'black and white', it might not tell you what you want to hear.

What's Important To Do Each Day?

All business processes have a drum beat. Certain tasks need to happen like clockwork and the ability for a business to develop these habits can distinguish them from the competition. My latest book, Sunrise Meetings , shares a step by step process to help capture these routines and make them an integral part of your day-to-day business. It is free this weekend on the Amazon Kindle (until the end of 16th December 2013 PST). You can get it here. Giles Johnston Author of 'Business Process Re-Engineering', a practical plan to improve business performance.

Sunrise Meetings: Free Kindle Book

My new book 'Sunrise Meetings' is now available on the Amazon Kindle platform and is free to download between the 12th of December 2013 and the 16th of December 2013 (PST). Download 'Sunrise Meetings' for Kindle here. The book is focused on tying up your process management issues into an organised and routine way of working. The Sunrise Meeting is one great way of doing this, and the book takes you through a series of steps to create and define your own effective Sunrise Meeting. There's more in the book too, helping establish more disciplined and effective habits of working. I hope you enjoy it. Giles Johnston Author of 'Business Process Re-Engineering', a practical plan to improve business performance.

Manage change proactively

Once improvements have been identified you need to manage the activities required in order to realise the benefits, otherwise the project will have been in vain. I see many businesses that talk a good talk, but don’t deliver what they could. True, the day to day busyness of work can get in the way, but that’s not a great reason is it? Managing change is just the same as managing any other project with two subtle differences. The first is that you need to help your team overcome their fear of failure. The second is to help them get started with taking action. Overcoming the fear of failure can be facilitated by being interested in finding out what the results are from their ‘experiments’. The results they achieve are just that – results. They are indicators and are only outcomes if you decide that they are. Improvements rarely go right, that’s why PDCA (Plan Do Check Act) is at the heart of Continuous Improvement . Getting started with action goes back to the previous secti

Process KPIs

Many businesses use Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to help them judge and monitor the performance of the business. They often use what I would call ‘output metrics’. These metrics tell the story of what happened, which is useful to know. They need to be included in a suite of measures, to give you the proper context, but don’t allow you to change the outcome. Process KPIs are therefore metrics that tell you how key elements of your business processes are working. By understanding the performance in these areas you can adjust what you are doing today, with the idea of impacting tomorrow’s outcome. Managing the process helps you to define what the output metrics will be. If you review your process map, and the questions you have designed for your sunrise meeting, you will probably start to see the type of process KPIs you have. Whilst many KPIs are numerical in nature, usually expressed as a percentage, they can be used digitally. The ‘yes’ and ‘no’ questions of the sunrise

Sunrise Meeting - Do You Have One?

By defining a handful of essential routines for your business you have taken a step forward. The real challenge is in executing these routines day in and day out. A great way to keep an eye on things and get your team involved with developing these new habits is a ‘sunrise meeting’. Simply, a sunrise meeting is a start of the working day meeting where the key elements of your routine are reviewed. Ideally the routines can be boiled down to a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer to prevent people from dodging the question. For example, if your team were responsible for the shop floor information packs (drawings, works orders etc…) then an effective question could be ’did all of the packs get issued yesterday?’ Sunrise meetings should be short and punchy. If they start to break down into discussions about specific issues in the factory then the focus is lost. The idea is that your team are keeping an eye on the overall process happening day in and day out. Specific issues could point to a part