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A guide to lean manufacturing training

Thousands of organizations are turning to lean manufacturing because of its ability to organize a company and also to improve customer relationships and cut costs. What makes lean manufacturing so attractive is that it can be changed and adapted for just about any industry. Unlike other programs that come in and out, lean manufacturing is created to work and it won't end up being a temporary phase or program that ends up wasting your money and your time.

What will really make or break the program is training. You must not rush the training process of lean manufacturing if you want it done correctly. You must take the time to actually train your employees and to give them time to understand what their role is with lean manufacturing and to figure out proper implementation. The only place where your training may go wrong is by choosing the wrong program to use with lean manufacturing. If you choose the wrong one, it can lead you to losing money and time because you have chosen Six Sigma methods when you should have focused on Kaizen or other methods.

The good news is that when you choose lean manufacturing you do have a number of different tools that you will use and they all find a way to work together, allowing you to save money on training. You can easily train each employee with different specialties and feel good about this since all of the tools will interact in some way. However the only way to make them work together is with proper training of each employee as they all need to become a master in their field for it to work correctly.

One of the biggest challenges that comes with lean manufacturing is struggling to get your employees to buy into their roles. Getting people to think in a different mindset is not always the easiest thing and it can lead to a lot of frustration on both sides. New employees may not be as resistant to changes but your employees that have been there for a number of years are not always as willing to change and often do not see why they should change the way they have been doing their jobs for many years.

Getting employees to trust management isn't always easy if your company is experiencing morale problems. This is where management needs to stand firm and be excellent leaders is they would like to provide their employees with a clean plan of action. Lean manufacturing consultants and experts in their industry can help you to figure out new ways to train your employees so they will respect management but also so they can understand how lean manufacturing works.

For businesses, the best method to implement is called the PDCA model. This model entails "plan, do, check, and act." It will allow your company to learn from an industry expert that has seen it work in many companies but has also seen it fail as well. Take some of your managers to other industries where lean manufacturing has been a success so they can see how it works and learn some of the necessary skills from them. When you do tour other companies and discuss lean manufacturing you should talk to several people within the organization to get a well-rounded opinion of how lean manufacturing works. This will allow you to see what obstacles they faced and how they overcame them. You need to ask about financial mistakes that are made so you can prepare your company in different ways for these obstacles. Moving toward a lean company will bring about camaraderie, job security, financial success, and many other things that can all help your company grow and move forward with a positive outlook.

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