Tag: Kaizen

Toronto Cyclist Error Proofs With a “Pool Noodle” to Improve His Safety

Toronto Cyclist Error Proofs With a “Pool Noodle” to Improve His Safety

This article from the Toronto Star caught my eye the other day:

Cyclist says his pool noodle makes Toronto streets safer for him

There was a law passed in Ontario requiring drivers leave one meter of space between them and cyclists. This doesn’t always happen, as there have been almost 900 collisions between bikes and cars to date this year in Toronto.

By October 21, 2016 5 Comments Read More →
Coming Soon: A Fresh Look at Some Old GM & NUMMI Documents About Lean, Japan, and More

Coming Soon: A Fresh Look at Some Old GM & NUMMI Documents About Lean, Japan, and More

When I was a graduate student at the MIT Leaders for Global Operations program, one of our visiting professors was Don Ephlin, a former Vice President for the United Auto Workers. He passed away in 2000 (read his obituary).

By October 18, 2016 3 Comments Read More →
Real Productivity Improvement vs. Pressuring Workers; Easier vs. Suboptimizing

Real Productivity Improvement vs. Pressuring Workers; Easier vs. Suboptimizing

When I was in England on vacation recently, I saw this column in the Financial Times:

Listen to your employees and so increase their productivity

And the author, Sarah O’Connor, makes a great point in the sub headline – that just asking people to work faster might mean quality suffers. As leaders, in a factory or a hospital or a software company (or whatever), you can’t just demand better results.

By October 17, 2016 2 Comments Read More →
“Jiro Dreams of Sushi” & the Kaizen Mindset

“Jiro Dreams of Sushi” & the Kaizen Mindset

I watched the movie "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" for a second time. The film focuses mainly on Jiro Ono, a now 90-year old sushi chef in Tokyo who has received the rare and coveted Michelin 3-star rating for his restaurant. The film reminds me of Lean thinking, especially the drive for Kaizen, or continuous improvement.

By October 14, 2016 4 Comments Read More →
1% Improvement Here and There Can Make a Big Difference in Wine Making?

1% Improvement Here and There Can Make a Big Difference in Wine Making?

I was fortunate to take a nearly two-week vacation recently, a trip that included a week in France.

My wife and I had a chance to, I guess, do a number of “gemba visits” at some wineries in the Burgundy, Chablis, Champagne, and Alsace regions of the country last week.

By October 11, 2016 1 Comments Read More →
#TBT with an Update: Kaizen & Culture Clash Between Suntory & Jim Beam?

#TBT with an Update: Kaizen & Culture Clash Between Suntory & Jim Beam?

Last year, I wrote a blog post about the intersection of two things I like a lot: Kaizen and whiskey: “Why Kaizen is an Important Differentiator for Japanese Whisky.” Yeah, the spelling of whiskey/whisky isn’t standardized :-)

By September 8, 2016 2 Comments Read More →
This Time, the NEJM Publishes Something Positive About #Lean

This Time, the NEJM Publishes Something Positive About #Lean

You might remember the hubbub (a kerfuffle?) over the NEJM opinion piece written by Dr. Jerome Groopman and Dr. Pamela Hartzband. See my first post about their article. There are more links at the bottom of this post

By September 1, 2016 1 Comments Read More →
Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 15, 2016: Whiskey, Deming, Brazil & Kaizen

Key Tweets from @MarkGraban – Week of August 15, 2016: Whiskey, Deming, Brazil & Kaizen

Here’s the latest installment of “Key Tweets,” a weekly post that summarizes some of my tweets (or retweets) from the week, including pictures and other fun stuff. Follow me @MarkGraban and join the fun and the conversation. See the previous installments of Key Tweets here.

By August 19, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Why You Shouldn’t Rely on Sticky Notes to Sell Cars or Improve Processes

Why You Shouldn’t Rely on Sticky Notes to Sell Cars or Improve Processes

As I occasionally do, I’ve written blog post for KaiNexus:

For the Want of a System Better Than a Sticky Note, a Car Sale Was Lost

I hope you’ll enjoy the post… not just me complaining about a car dealer (it was their loss, quite literally). But, I think you’ll appreciate the parallels to process improvement.

By August 18, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
The Time I Volunteered at a Distillery and Couldn’t Help Doing Kaizen

The Time I Volunteered at a Distillery and Couldn’t Help Doing Kaizen

One thing I enjoy is the opportunity to basically be a “value adding” worker in a process. The work is pretty repetitive (but, again, it’s a very enjoyable environment) and it lets me think like an industrial engineer or a “Lean thinker” when I’m not talking with...

Are These Bad Suggestions About Suggestion Boxes?

Are These Bad Suggestions About Suggestion Boxes?

I've written a lot about suggestion boxes, and usually in the context of how they don't work well. Many aspects of traditional suggestion box systems sound great, but don't work in practice. What doesn't work: Boxes not being opened very often, being reviewed by a committee or executives...

By August 11, 2016 0 Comments Read More →
Lean at UCLA Harbor Medical Center Featured by the BBC

Lean at UCLA Harbor Medical Center Featured by the BBC

The BBC radio program “The Science Hour” recently aired a program with a segment where an unexpected person (Dr. Kevin Fong) to an unexpected place (UCLA Harbor Medical Center) to look into “Lean.”

My Article on “Testing Lean Changes, Small or Large;” Recent Winery Visits

My Article on “Testing Lean Changes, Small or Large;” Recent Winery Visits

Thanks to Arena Simulation Software for asking me to write this article for their regular customer newsletter:

Testing Lean Changes, Small or Large

The article is freely available to any reader:

Pokémon Go, Kaizen, and Leadership

Pokémon Go, Kaizen, and Leadership

I don't get the whole Pokémon thing. But how does the wildly popular Pokémon Go game make me thing of Lean and Kaizen - leaders need to get out of their offices, go out and search for improvement opportunities! Gotta catch 'em all! ...

#Lean Healthcare Trip to China, Day 1, Part 2: Chinese Hospital Presentations in Beijing

#Lean Healthcare Trip to China, Day 1, Part 2: Chinese Hospital Presentations in Beijing

Continuing from Part 1 of my post about my first day of my first China trip, I’d like to share more about the Lean healthcare conference and presentations that took place.

In the next presentation from a Chinese hospital, the speaker started talking about the need to “improve [patient and employee] satisfaction through Lean management” and that “we have the same goals and purpose” as I expressed in my presentation… namely safety, quality, waiting times, cost, and employee morale (SQDCM).

My LinkedIn Post on Bad Toast & Bad Management

My LinkedIn Post on Bad Toast & Bad Management

Previously on LinkedIn, I've written about Kaizen in a wine bar and the need for restaurants to not blame employees for problems. Yesterday, I published my 50th post for their Influencers program: This Restaurant Server Sadly Explains a Widespread Management Problem...

Information Deficits, Visual Indicators, Error Proofing, and Payment Terminals

Information Deficits, Visual Indicators, Error Proofing, and Payment Terminals

Gwendolyn Galsworth is a leading thinker and author on Lean and various aspects of "visuality." One thing she talks about in the workplace is "information deficits."

If Your Hospital Wants to “Implement #Lean,” You Need to Learn This Lesson from Toyota

If Your Hospital Wants to “Implement #Lean,” You Need to Learn This Lesson from Toyota

I've written before about the subject of hospitals "flexing" nurses and employees. I've criticized flexing (or the practice of sending employees home early because patient census is low) and I've pointed out that it's not keeping with "Lean" principles to "save money" by sending people home early.