A Lean Simulation for Clemson Students


Clemson students learn by building a better clock

The article I've linked to above describes a hands-on simulation being run for Lean students at Clemson University. This is great, since it's hard to understand Lean principles from just reading books. When I learned about Lean as an undergrad (in Professor Mark Spearman's outsanding “Factory Physics” class), it was a pretty mathematical, theoretical exercise (that pull and WIP controls were far better than “push”).

It's nice to see the hands-on exercises entering the curriculum. I'm sure what Clemson is doing is being repeated in universities around the world.

Tuesday, I'm speaking to a class at Wharton (half MBA, half engineers) and I was happy to see that one of their early exposures to Lean was a day-long simulation at a local manufacturing training center. I'll be talking about Lean in healthcare… kind of hard to do a hands-on simulation there, but I'll be bringing pictures and examples from that “gemba” to help them see the potential for Lean in improving healthcare.

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Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


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