Lean Toward Perfection For Greater Value

Do you practice the five key principles of Lean manufacturing at your organization? The concept is simple to understand: only do what is necessary to bring value to your product or service. 

Here we break down the five principles in their most basic form:

Value: This is determined by your customer and how much money he is willing to pay for said product or service. Any process or action that does not bring value to the product or service is considered waste and must be eliminated.

Value Stream: Every business has a set of processes (steps) that it takes to make the product or provide the service. In Lean manufacturing, you need to have a clear understanding of the entire process so that you can determine what part of the process (if any) doesn’t provide value to the end result. 

Flow: Your value stream should always be moving forward, if something get stuck and that value stream stops, that means waste is accumulating. A good way to remember this is ,“Flow never stops flowing forward.” When flow is good, that means decreased waste and increased value to your customer.

Pull: This is a very important rule in Lean manufacturing; never make a product until the customer orders it. By practicing the philosophy of “pull,” your business needs to be flexible, be able to achieve very short cycle time as well as have an impeccable value stream based on what your customer considers of “value” and is willing to pay for.

Perfection: This is the goal. This requires constantly eliminating root causes that play a part in poor quality and move your product or service away from perfection. 

Interested in learning more about lean principles and how to apply them to your organization? Check out our lean training classes available now at 6sigma.us.

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