Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Have You Seen Tim Woods Today?


Employees want to do their best, sometimes the system or process does not position them to be successful. At times, it can be difficult for employees to see the forest for the trees. Sometimes they cannot see past the mounds of work at hand. This is why Lean Thinking shifts the viewpoint from a worker-centric vantage to the eyes of the customer. The customer’s perspective enables us to understand not only where we might be standing in the forest but also how to navigate through it.

Lean thinkers focus on waste, which we call muda. To make processes more efficient and move closer to the value stream (those steps that take us from beginning to end of a process and which add value), we use lean thinking approaches to remove muda from processes.

There is a handy acronym for knowing the 8 types of waste: “Tim Woods”

Transportation
Transporting items or information that is not required to perform the process from one location to another. While the product is moving, no value is added to it.

Inventory
Inventory and information queued-up between people and processes that are sitting idle not being processed.

Motion
Excess movement by people or equipment only consumes time and resources without producing value. People, information or equipment making unnecessary motion due to workspace layout, ergonomic issues or searching for misplaced items.

Waiting
Idle time created when material, information, people, or equipment is not ready. No value is added while people wait for product to process or product waits for people or machines.

Over-Processing
Performing any activity that is not necessary to produce a functioning product or service. Doing more than what is necessary to generate satisfactory value as defined by the customer.

Overproduction
Waste from producing product that is not currently needed or product that is not needed at all.

Defects
Products or services that are out of specification that require resources to correct. Defects are the result of executed processes that did not produce value.

Skills
The waste of underutilized intelligence and intellect commonly referred to as behavioral waste. When employees that are not effectively engaged in the process.

We encounter muda every day. It is all around us and present in everything we do. Lean thinkers strive to reach perfection—that state where all waste has been removed from a process and only value remains—but so far no one has achieved the desired state. It helps to remember, therefore, the eight types of muda and watch for them in what you do each day. You don’t have to engage in a kaizen event to get rid of all waste, you simply have to identify it and stop doing it.

Starting a Lean journey can be easy, but mastering Lean can take a lifetime. In a Lean world, the only thing worse than finding waste is not taking the steps to get rid of it.

Not seeing is not knowing. The following steps can help you see Tim Woods.

Step 1: Scan the forest from the mountaintop. View the entire workplace from a single standpoint.
Step 2: Observer the woods. Look at the entrance and exit points of each line or cell.
Step 3: Observe the groves. Study machines, people, and materials at each process.
Step 4: Observe the trees. Look at machine motions and people motions.

As you work through the day, ask yourself whether what you are doing fits into TIM WOODS. If it does, then ask yourself if there is way to avoid doing the wasteful step and if you can, eliminate that step. Have you seen Tim Woods today?


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