If you're interested in lean, there are five manufacturing terms to know when it comes to the basics of lean manufacturing. These terms might help you put words to what you see in action every day. The Japanese terms Muda, Mura, and Muri refer to the seven wastes of lean (motion, inventory, waiting, defects, overproduction, transportation, and overprocessing), imbalance or inconsistency, and overburdening. Leveled production is about smoothing out production while just-in-time production is about strategically giving customers products at the minimum cost. Total Production Maintenance is all about integration of machine maintenance. Finally, Poka-yoke is preventing errors from occurring. How many of these terms do you use on a daily basis? Did you learn any new terms?
Learning about Lean systems is often exciting and motivating for organizations eager to create sustainable long-term business success. One of the first things we all learn about Lean is that it was created in manufacturing, specifically within Toyota and the automotive industry. But, for those of us in fields outside of manufacturing—healthcare, construction, education, government, software and so on— the excitement of what can be accomplished with Lean sometimes leads us to skip over some of the finer Lean manufacturing principles in lieu of taking action on things with a clearer impact on our organization. While selective learning can be helpful in a jargon-rich and sometimes technical field like continuous improvement, when reading about Lean and other improvement methodologies, the more Lean manufacturing principles and terms you are familiar with, the better. Read More