More Wisconsin Lean

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Green Bay Press-Gazette – Tufco growing operations while keeping safety in focus:

Another story from a small company in Wisconsin:

“”It is easy to downsize. Growth is difficult,” LeCalsey said. “There are so many draw-offs of profitability in growth.” The company has adopted the Six Sigma and Lean processes and more than doubled annual wipes capacity in four months, LeCalsey said. He said Tufco has five times less waste than before implementing Lean. “We think we can get another 50 percent on that same equipment,” he said. It was not an easy transition.”

The plant has also gone 2 million man-hours without a lost-time injury. That's something to be proud of and an illustration that Lean and safety go hand in hand!

It's also a great reminder that Lean should be a growth strategy. You're going to free up people through efficiency improvements, so it's better to find something productive for them to do rather than killing your Lean efforts with layoffs.

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent book is the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus. His latest book has been released as an "in-progress" book, titled Measures of Success.

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