Why Is Lean Important Today? (More Fatalistic View)

Posted on November 18, 2011 | in Lean Wastes, Manufacturing, Small Business, Sports, Time Savings | by

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So we’re struggling through the worst economic downturn in our lifetimes, and based on the varying opinions of all the economic experts no one knows for sure when it will end.

As a result, companies are taking drastic actions to reduce costs, all in an effort to stay afloat until the conclusion of the down cycle.  All businesses – small businesses and sports organizations are not excepted. Cutting headcount.  Minimizing extraneous purchases.  No more excessive perks.

Reducing waste.

Isn’t now the best time to implement Lean?  Isn’t today the most critical time to implement Lean?

For another deeper definition, Lean, quite simply, is a systematic approach to reducing waste in any type of process.  Waste is essentially any activity/material within a process that is deemed unnecessary or the end customer (a paying customer, your boss, your family, you) is not willing to pay for.  In other words, if something isn’t important to the completion of a process or to the end customer, why is it important to you?

Lean helps reduce – maybe even eliminate – waste from a process.  With reduced waste comes reduced costs (meaning higher profits!) and improved efficiency.

In fact, if Lean is implemented to its fullest extent, a company gains greater flexibility to better handle economic crises like we’re experiencing today.  Lean is about adapting to changing circumstances and meeting the changing needs of the end customer.  Maybe in the future, those cost-cutting actions don’t have to be so drastic and devastating.

Another purpose of Lean Blitz is to provide a series of stories, ideas, thoughts, and best practices of Lean implementation that will inspire you to get creative in optimizing processes, whether these processes are at work or in your personal life.  What I hope to achieve in the end is a demonstration of how Lean concepts can make your business, your work life, and your personal life easier to manage.

Lean is a continuous journey, but the most important things you need to have in order to navigate this journey are an open mind to new ideas and the ability to change.

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