GE Can Really Help Spread Lean
GE did so much to help popularize Six Sigma, will they do the same for Lean? As a lean guy, I hope GE is incredibly successful with their lean efforts – it will give the Wall Street Journal and Business Week something positive to write about lean, other than Toyota. Instead of “Just in Time Supply Chains are Risky” articles, the media can write about GE's lean success. That would help us all, wouldn't it?
Even with the problems I had with getting refrigerator service scheduled, I'll hold out hope that GE can get lean right.
GE's definition of Lean:
GE, an early adopter of Six Sigma, has been working to combine Six Sigma's core principles with that of Lean, a methodology focused on waste reduction (as opposed to defect reduction). GE's hybrid approach to Lean Six Sigma is in part based on the venerable Toyota Production System (TPS), which seeks to compress the timeline from order receipt to payment received by removing waste. GE's Lean Six Sigma mode is guided by four key principles:
- Define what the customer perceives as value in the product or service.
- Map the value stream of all steps (value and non-value added).
- Establish the flow of products, services and related knowledge from supplier to customer.
- Continuously improve the process to perfection
The article, written by GE people, uses Toyota and Dell as examples of “floor efficiency.” I guess they are aluding to Dell also being “lean,” like Toyota, but if you've been reading my blog for a while, you know how I feel about that.