How to Do a Lean Transformation – The Toyota Approach

Companies continuously need to improve to survive. Lean can help them with this continuous improvement, so many companies aspire to become lean. The question is, how do you do that? How do you do a lean transformation, or more generally a change management? In this post I would like to talk about what is needed for a company to start their journey to lean. Be warned, it is not easy, and it does require a lot of support from the very top.

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Happy 7th Birthday AllAboutLean.com

Today, AllAboutLean.com turns seven years old. Hurray! Amazing how fast time flies. Time to look back again on what happened. This is my 370th post on this blog. For seven years I have published a blog post every week going into the details of lean manufacturing and related topics (and once per year a birthday celebration post).

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Toyota’s Six Rules for Kanban

Simple Kanban LoopThe kanban system is the most famous way to establish a pull system. As part of their guidelines for kanban, Toyota has established Six Rules for Kanban. They can be found, for example, in the 1973 Toyota Production System Handbook. This blog post describes these six rules, based on the Toyota handbook. While these rules are all true, they are in themselves not sufficient to establish a kanban pull production. Nevertheless, this post will show you these six rules.

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How the Corona Virus affects Logistics

The coronavirus, also known as COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2, is running through the world like a wildfire. Besides killing hundreds of thousands of people, it is also creating a huge headache for the economy. Many countries are currently experiencing a second wave. In this post I will look at how the pandemic affects supply chains, how they react, and how this may shape supply chains in the future. 

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On the Safety of Workers During Corona – Part 2

The Corona pandemic is still spreading around the world. Some countries could contain the virus, while it still spreads in others. Other countries are experiencing a “second wave”, which is bigger than the first wave. One of the potential ways to get infected is at work. Hence, I would like to write about ways to reduce the risk of infection at work. This is the second post on workplace safety during Corona. After this, another post will look at how Corona influenced logistics around the world. As before, I am an engineer and not a virologist. Hence, all virus-related information is only to the best of my knowledge. Use this information at your own risk. I still hope that it helps you to provide a safe environment for your people!

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On the Safety of Workers During Corona – Part 1

The world is suffering from a pandemic. SARS-CoV-2, better known as the coronavirus, is killing people all over the world and damaging the economy. One major topic (among many) is how to keep workers safe during the pandemic. Hence, I would like to provide my thoughts on this topic.

Please note, this is not a guideline to solve all your virus-related manufacturing problems. The current situation is causing headaches for most manufacturing companies, and these headaches are hard to avoid. Second, I am an engineer and not a virologist. Hence, all virus-related information is only to the best of my knowledge. But, come to think of it, so is my engineering knowledge too. Use this information at your own risk. The recommendations here are based on the common recommendations to avoid infection, with a view on how they can be applied on the shop floor. This is the first out of two posts on worker safety during the pandemic, followed by a post of the influence of corona on logistics.

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Design for X

In my last couple of posts I looked at design for manufacturing and assembly DFMA. However, there is more out there. Often, they are grouped as Design for X, where X could be anything related to the product life cycle, including development, production, shipping, servicing, use, disposal, and many more. There seems to be a large number of more-or-less well-known terms that are used somewhere. Many of them claim to be essential, but not all are. If you try to do them all, you will never get the design done. Focus on the ones that are most promising for your case. After all, all designs are designed for something, usually a trade-off of functionality versus cost. This is sometimes also known as design to cost.

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