How to Manage Your Lean Projects – Prioritize

Impact Effort MatrixIn our first post of this series, we discussed how to avoid void work overload using a project management board. The key was to limit the number of active projects. Start a new project only when a previous one is completed. This second post now details which project to start next. Here I want to emphasize the importance of prioritization. I describe some simple tools on how to quickly determine the most important task at hand.

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How to Manage Your Lean Projects – Number of Active Projects

Project management boardLet’s face it – you have more things to do than you can reasonably do in the available time. A constant stream of tasks or problems are waiting for a lean solution. This two-post series wants to help you with that. In this first post, we will discuss how to avoid work overload using a simple project management board. A second post will tell you how to Manage Your Lean Projects – Prioritize.

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How a Little Bit of Industrial Espionage Started the Industrial Revolution

Top SecretThe Industrial Revolution changed the lives of ordinary people faster and more radically than any other period in history before it. Within only a few decades, small artisan shops were replaced by large factories. The Industrial Revolution started with the mass processing of cotton. Yet, as we will see, this happened only due to significant industrial espionage across multiple countries.

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SMED – Creative Quick Changeover Exercises and Training

Fish Course
Set up exercises

One popular approach to battle waste is to streamline changeovers. Changing machines from one setup to another is often a time-consuming exercise. Hence, in lean manufacturing, reducing changeover times is a well-known method for improving efficiency. This post will show a number of examples where these quick changeovers (also known as SMED) can be practiced in an unusual environment.

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The History of Quick Changeover (SMED)

Appetizer Course
Set up history

In the previous post, I explained the basics of a quick changeover. In this post, I will go through the history of quick changeovers (also known as SMED). It is quite interesting to learn how things have developed during the twentieth century. The next post will look at different, unusual ways to teach SMED.

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Quick Changeover Basics – SMED

Formal Place Setting
Set up basics

One popular approach to battle waste is to streamline changeovers. Changing machines from one set-up to another is often a time-consuming exercise. Hence, in lean manufacturing, reducing changeover times is a well-known method for improving efficiency. In this post, we will go through the basic approach of improving changeover time, also known as quick changeover or single minute exchange of die (SMED).

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Poka Yoke Training – Simple Mistake Proofing Game

Assembled Blue Dragon
Poka yoke anyone?

Mistake proofing (or Poka Yoke in Japanese) is one important way to avoid waste in lean manufacturing. In this post, I will present a small game that can be used to teach the basics of poka yoke easily and quickly. The game is based on Kinder Surprise eggs made by Ferrero, also known as a Kinder Egg. These eggs are available almost anywhere – except in the US, in which case there are some alternatives.

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