Friday, April 25, 2014

Lean Quote: No End to Lean Improvement

On Fridays I will post a Lean related Quote. Throughout our lifetimes many people touch our lives and leave us with words of wisdom. These can both be a source of new learning and also a point to pause and reflect upon lessons we have learned. Within Lean active learning is an important aspect on this journey because without learning we can not improve.

"Once you think you have arrived, you have already started your descent.— Old Adage

There is an old saying that goes “Once you think you have arrived, you have already started your descent.” One must never think they "have arrived." In the West we say "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." But the spirit of kaizen suggests that there is always something to learn and ways to improve, and that it is also better to prevent problems than to fix them.

So, no matter how good things may seem now, there is still always improvement to be had. The spirit of kaizen does not accept the status quo. Never be willing to settle for less. There is always room for improvement, and looking to improve every day is what Lean is all about.

Continuous improvement (Lean) is the never-ending pursuit of waste elimination by continually creating a better workplace, better products, and greater value to society.  The process is never perfect --  as the name implies, with continuous improvement you are never done; even the improvement can be improved. 

Lean institutionalizes the practice of making many small improvements every day and improves overall efficiency.  Continuous Improvement refers to the idea that a large number of small improvements in processes are easier to implement than major improvements and have a large cumulative effect.


It’s not about how far you have come or how far you have yet to go, it is only about this moment and being open to seeing the lessons around you, and possessing the capacity and willingness to learn and improve. There are many small things you can do to increase your mindfulness and skills over time. Never ever give in to complacency for we may end up losing.

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