So far, this month’s blog articles have shared Lean philosophies, history, benefits and tips for getting started. However, many readers may step back and say that these posts aren’t relevant for them – as Lean is really just for manufacturing. However, that is so NOT THE CASE! See how Lean tools and principles can help service based organizations, as well as administrative and office functions within all types of industries.
One of the reasons that Lean concepts get shoe-boxed into just manufacturing is that companies tend to focus on the lean “tools” and do not look at how work is performed and flows. Also, because administrative functions are often not physically observable and there is no final physical product, many think you can’t measure “defects” or “lead times” or other metrics associated with a manufacturing environment. Similarly, service organizations claim that they can’t implement Lean because their processes are long, contain many complex variables, multiple decision points and much of the work takes place out of sight and in peoples’ minds. However, it is actually because of these factors that Lean practices can really help these organizations
So as you can see, the belief that Lean won’t work in a service or administrative environment is just a myth, and the fear that Lean techniques and principles will hinder creativity and innovation are not only unfounded but just the opposite! So consider implementing Lean concepts into the office environment in your organization. You will begin to see the possibilities for improvement in all that you do.
By Ann Condon, Marketing Manager
Ann Condon has been with Dion for 17 years, working in Dion’s Marketing and Business Development Department. Although this was her first position with a jewelry manufacturer, she has learned a lot over the years. Ann enjoys getting involved in “All Things Dion” from volunteering at the Dion Golf Tournament to being a part of the Dion Diamonds Relay for Life Team. She has quite a number of Dion event t-shirts to show for it!
Lean Principles In An Office Environment
Lean Office: How to make my office lean and productive?
Think Lean Six Sigma
How to Encourage Critical Thinking in the Workplace
Paul Crosby The Uncommon League
Practicing Lean Fundamentals in an Office Environment
Drew Locher Lean Enterprise Institute
How to Make an Office Lean
Dan Markovitz Industry Week
Lean is Even More Important in Services than Manufacturing
Karyn Ross Industry Week
Will Lean Kill Creativity In Innovation?
Henrik Sonnenberg & Claus Sehested Implementation Consulting Group