• The amazing challenging power of TPS

    The amazing challenging power of TPS

    Toyota’s Thinking People System continues to amaze me. To prepare for tomorrow’s gemba visit of one of their sites, the CEO and COO of this service company used the TPS House to draw the list of challenges they needed to […]

     
  • Do you want to learn lean? Or do you want to talk about lean?

    Do you want to learn lean? Or do you want to talk about lean?

    Before you read this post, ask yourself the following three questions: Am I improving customer value today? Am I investigating customer complaints systematically? I am challenging what I understand of my customer’s business model? What topic am I currently engaged […]

     
  • People need hope, they need wins, they need kaizen

    People need hope, they need wins, they need kaizen

    Sometimes, business is tough. Sometimes, products are undersold, markets reverse, competition is unduly aggressive. Sometimes core technologies change. When the company hits troubled waters, people can find themselves working very hard just to stay afloat, stuck in a “Red Queen” […]

     
  • Continuous flow… at the dentists’: Jidoka is the key to flow

    Continuous flow… at the dentists’: Jidoka is the key to flow

    Continuous flow is without debate a more effective way to work, but to many it seems impossible to reach in their current conditions – indeed, continuous flow requires an understanding of Jidoka as well. I had the misfortune of spending […]

     
  • Let go of the Post-its!

    Let go of the Post-its!

    Enough with the Post-its, already. Our aim is to crate space for more mindful work. More mindful work is more sensitive to customers’ wishes and smarter with avoiding waste. When did we start using post-its to represent work? 20 years ago […]

     
  • How to convince engineers… to listen to service feedback

    How to convince engineers… to listen to service feedback

    Concepts matter. Engineers are notoriously hard of hearing when it comes to negative feedback about their designs. Not surprisingly, they’re keen about their work, but sometimes customers do experience mishaps, inconveniences or simply gripe about impractical features. How can we […]

     
  • How responsible do you feel for your customers?

    How responsible do you feel for your customers?

    Our customers are our responsibility. What happens to them is our problem, particularly regarding what we do for them. Customers are not resources to get exploited by getting more money off them every way we can. Customers are friends to […]

     
  • To start solving environmental problems, first you have to face them!

    To start solving environmental problems, first you have to face them!

    We all agree that we need to start improving our environmental performance – but where to start? Every little thing we can think of seems to be ridiculously small compared to such global problems as global warming or greenhouse gas […]

     
  • Only the paranoid survive

    Only the paranoid survive

    “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you in trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.” This quote (falsely) attributed to Mark Twain is unfortunately too true. Our brain are designed to imagine a future […]

     
  • Lean thinking is about changing your story about work – it’s never content free

    Lean thinking is about changing your story about work – it’s never content free

    “Apply a dose of lean every day and your results will improve” or “if it doesn’t work, apply double dose (read: you’re not committed enough)!” Does it sound like snake oil? It should. Lean is not an organizing method. It’s […]