Hurrah! Today is the first day of Spring, if a little snowy, in the Boston area. And the 28th Annual Shingo Prize Conference is fast approaching in just one month. GBMP will be there and I’ll be teaching the Shingo Institute IMPROVE Workshop on April 24-25. In honor of the conference, I’ve dug into the archives of my blog, going back to 2010, to find posts relating to each of the ten guiding principles from the Shingo model. For those of you who’ve started reading my posts more recently, I invite you to peruse a sometimes humorous, sometimes serious potpourri of posts from the last six years.
Looking for a five-minute break from your work? Each post takes about that long to read. Follow the links and enjoy – and hope to see you at the Shingo Conference in Washington, D.C.
Lead With Humility
Humility may be seen as a sign of weakness. This post from early in 2010, entitled Lead with Humiliation is about a couple of my fellow managers struggling with the concept of humility. Leading with humility can be scary for managers.
Respect Every Individual
I wrote this post, Invisibility, about the unfortunate assumptions that are often made regarding the value of formal education or lack thereof. The 8th waste is definitely the worst and unfortunately the most prevalent.
Focus on Process
Inspired by a scene from Casablanca, this post, The Usual Suspects, from 2011 reminds us to focus on the 5 Why’s rather than the 1 Who. When we rush to judgment without understanding root causes we poison the quality culture.
Embrace Scientific Thinking
In 2010, I had a funny experience with a young engineer’s interpretation of ‘direct observation.’ This post, entitled Being There was written with millennials in mind, but probably applies to all generations.
Improve Flow and Pull
My personal experience trying futilely to satisfy customer demands with push production is described in this recent post, Bump and Grind. The message is that a bad system cannot be fixed with workarounds.
Assure Quality at the Source
As suppliers we often feel that zero defects is impossible or at least impractical; but as customers we demand zero defects. This post from 2013, titled Cracked, is about a familiar product for which most of us as customers will accept no defects.
Managers are often encouraged to choose easy targets, a practice that limits professional challenge of team members and stymies Lean transformation. This post, Target Practice, was written in 2010 about an experience at customer from several years earlier.
Create Constancy of Purpose
Here are some good Lean lessons I learned while coaching my kid’s soccer teams. Last year I wrote a post called Up, Back and Around as a reminder that when the goal is clear, we may adjust our tactical decisions will also be clear.
Watching repairs to the UMass Boston campus library last June, I reflected on the criticality of improving a system, not just its parts. Failure to do this will have negative consequences. Long Term Sinking is a result of short-term thinking.
Create Value for the Customer
In 2012, I wrote a post about my experience many years ago accompanying a salesman to a customer site to learn some lessons about the importance of understanding value to the customer. The post: A Salesman’s Gemba.
I hope you’ll find a few of these stories and video links helpful. As always, your responses are a welcome indication that there is somebody there. Want to learn more about the Shingo Principles? Come to the Shingo Conference in Washington next month!
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