Management Improvement Carnival #27 (Best of 2007)

John Hunter asked me to write the latest Management Carnival.  Normally, bloggers look at the previous month and share some links of their favorite posts.  Since we are at the start of a new year I thought I would change things up a bit and offer a few links from some of what I thought was the best in 2oo7!

Unfortunately I don’t have time to read many blogs each day.  But there are a few “staples” I check out on a very regular basis.  These blogs have helped me so much over the years.  I am better at what I do for a living because of these blogs.  And I am blogging to you today because of many of these blogs!  So without further delays let’s get to the best of 2007.

The Best of Gemba Panta Rei in 2007

Standards, Abnormality and the Ideal: The topic of warusa kagen led to some interesting further thought. The following statements are all true…

10 Common Misconceptions About Lean Manufacturing: 1. Lean production = volume production. In Taiichi Ohno’s Workplace Management he suggested that the Toyota system was ideally suited for low volume production, and not as well suited for the higher volume production that Toyota was shifting towards. In chapter 20 after describing the successful efforts at Toyota do Brasil to reduce lot sizes through changeover reduction, Ohno states…

Intuition, Information and the Toyota Production System: There are quite a few things that are counterintuitive about the Lean management system known as TPS. They are all fairly simple things, but hard to do since they feel wrong to people who have not been swimming in the waters of TPS for years.

TPS & the Tao: Some time ago a woman who was studying Taoism and also reading Taiichi Ohno said, “The more I read Taiichi Ohno’s book The Toyota Production System-Beyond Large-Scale Production, the more I believe that his philosophies are based in the teaching of Tao Te Ching.”

Ten Topics for Hansei After Kaizen Event: For better or worse, the 5-day kaizen event is a generally accepted and standard approach for rapid process improvement as part of a Lean implementation. There are both pros and cons to the 5-day kaizen event, of which more later. The more people learn about the broader definition of kaizen and other ways of doing kaizen as part of daily work and daily management, the more the limits of the 5-day kaizen become evident.

The Best of the Lean Blog in 2007

L.A.M.E. = Lean As Misguidedly Executed: We need a phrase that describes these “bad” or misguided attempts at Lean, things that give Lean a bad name.  How about: LAME: “Lean” As Misguidedly Executed.

Lean Thoughts on “Sicko”:  I’ve been asked a few times by blog readers about the movie “Sicko” since I work in the healthcare world.

Preventable Medical Error Cases: I heard about this story this morning, this horrible tragedy where a 35-year old woman, Darrie Eason (pictured), from New York was told she had cancer and had a double mastectomy done on her, only to find out she really didn’t have cancer.

No, Not Spongebob!!: “Who’s covered in lead and lives under the sea? Spongebob! Squarepants!

Lean Cannot Be Measured by Inventory Alone: It might be true that having tons of inventory means you are “not lean” but does having very little inventory on the books prove that you are lean?

The Best of Evolving Excellence in 2007

Rube Goldberg Takes On Supply Chains:  About four months ago Bill told you about this beastly contraption created by Boeing.  A heavily modified 747, it actually has three times the cargo capacity of a typical 747 freighter and is called the Large Cargo Freighter.

Heavy Heads of Consultants: But a lot of bloggers are consultants, and lately I have found that there’s one characteristic that is very common among consultants: they feel the need to support their heads with their hands.

The False God Opens a New Front: Well after many months of retreat, and even battling among themselves the false gods have opened a new front: document and compliance management software.

Dabbawallas, UPS, and FedEx: Mumbai residents rely on an intricately organized, labor-intensive operation that puts some automated high-tech systems to shame.

Yes, U.S. Manufacturing Can Compete: The bottom line? If you’re not working as hard as you can at improving, you will soon be facing enormous competitive pressure and the chances of survival are not good.

The Best of shmula in 2007

The Gemba is the Dojo: Today, I want to explicate on the Toyota notion of how the Gemba is the Dojo. 

Hansei — What is Really Important?: My neighbor down the street is Bob.  He has Alzheimer’s Disease and other ailments, and I feel bad for him.

Reacting to Visual Cues: The Toyota Production System makes effective use of visual cues to mark location in time and space, boundaries, and to answer the question “How am I doing” in a production setting.

There are many other excellent lean and six sigma blogs I am leaving out.  Please look at my Blogroll to the right for more links to some excellent material.

Lastly, please submit your favorite management posts to the carnival for future reference.

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