Lean & Green Workflow Improvement: The Eight Wastes

Time: Thursday, October 6, 1:30 to 3:00 PM

Location: Riverview Room

Speaker(s): Brion Hurley, Principal Lean Consultant, Rockwell Collins; Kjell van Zoen, Lean Business Consultant, vanZoen LLC

No business or individual is immune to waste and inefficiency.  It can be spotted across all business sectors and industries, in physical workspaces, during customer interactions, on the production line, inventory management, in the back office and in individual workflow practices.  To offset and better manage waste, lean process improvement (kaizen) initiatives have gained popularity.  The focus of such initiatives are to reduce non-value added activities (i.e. anything the customer is not willing to pay for) while improving efficiencies and overall product and service quality. Removing these wastes allow you and your organization to save money, and spend more time on value-added tasks, which helps grow your business. The goal is not to make people work harder and faster, but to make the processes easier and more effective.  In the 1950’s Taiichi Ohno, the father of lean manufacturing, created the Toyota Production System. It is based on the idea of preserving (or increasing) value with less work.  Anything that doesn’t increase value in the eye of the customer is considered waste, or “muda”, and every effort should be made to eliminate that waste, as it is taking time away from you and your employees from working on more meaningful tasks. These wastes have a universal application to businesses of any size or industry. By the early 2000’s, a connection was being made between waste and the impact it had on the environment (energy, water, landfill, pollution and carbon emissions), and the idea of “lean and green” was born. Are you familiar with these wastes, how they impact your organization, product, people and the planet? Do you understand the tools and theory required to identify and eliminate them? This session will include exercises and next steps for better understanding how to develop and introduce “lean and green” in your organization and your personal workflow.