First improvement: Your own management system.


Just as your product value streams require brilliant processes to deliver value, your management team also requires a brilliant management process to lead effectively. Here are some questions to ask yourself about your management process:

  • Quick, where does your team stand with your three most important business objectives?
  • Does every individual on your team know what's required of them today, this week, this month, this quarter and this year to achieve these objectives?
  • Do you have a process that links and tracks individual activities to your objectives to ensure your team will succeed?
  • Does your team know on a continuous basis if they are ahead, behind or on schedule?

Key point: If senior management does not understand the linkage between their business level goals and your team's daily activities, they will quickly lose interest in your Lean transformation. It won't be relevant to them.

Toyota‘s “Policy Deployment” process, also called Hoshin Kanri, is an elegantly simple yet effective “Lean Management System” that addresses these questions. Having a well defined and executed management system in place is a prerequisite for effectively leading and tracking a lean transformation of any significant size. As a Lean leader, I encourage you to learn more about Policy Deployment.

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Mark Edmondson
Mark Edmondson is passionate about achieving rapid, breakthrough results during a company’s lean transformation. With 30 years of front-line experience while working with over 80 companies, Mr. Edmondson developed a philosophy of helping companies create a culture that sustains operational excellence through low cost yet transformative changes.


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