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Is Lean (Manufacturing) Right for My Company?

Are you looking to increase the efficiency of your business operation?
Do you like making money rather than wasting it?
Are you looking for methods that can help you create wealth?
Is Lean Manufacturing right for your company?
Do you even know what Lean Manufacturing is?

Although cutting waste in your company dramatically and seeing an increase in available money because of it sounds elementary, there are business owners who do not implement an effective lean manufacturing plan.In fact, some are unsure that methods of lean manufacturing are even right for their company.

Lean Manufacturing is a business management technique of waste reduction that is used to improve overall efficiency and value.The elimination of waste will naturally save your business money!Also, Lean Manufacturing is designed to improve quality and production time.Sound's good so far right!

Although all authorities on Lean Manufacturing do not agree on a set list of the do's and don'ts ofLean Manufacturing techniques, their ideas are generally consistent and the implementation oflean manufacturing methods are designed to allow your operation to reducing waiting time between when the product is made and when the consumer makes the purchase.Lean manufacturing also enables you to find your own method of handling defective products, managing over production, etc.Basically, you find the method that works best for your operation to allow you to move your product and increase cash flow.

Lean manufacturing focuses on improving your product and the manufacturing process to the point that the best product is getting to the right people in the most efficient amount of time with as little (or none at all) waste as possible.

Perhaps the greatest challenge then is deciding on what type of Lean Manufacturing will work best for your company.It is said that the automatic industry was the first to implement a lean system.If, for example, you have a company that manufactures wingdings for dinglehoppers, it would be unreasonable for you to copy the methods used to make a sports car.You must find the right equation that, when you add in all your variables, will equal the greatest success for your specific company.Now, that is not to say that it is entirely wrong to observe and study the portions of lean management and operations that have worked well for others.In doing this you can find common denominators with your own manufacturing and make smaller changes to create a truly unique potion of positive production.

There are several types of lean manufacturing that you can look into.Kaizen, 5S, Total Productive Maintenance (TPM), Cellular Manufacturing, Just-in-time Production/Kanban, and Six Sigma are a few of the more popular methods.Some very important questions that you must ask yourself about your specific operation are:
- What is most important to my business or what needs to be done first?
- What sort of time restraints do we have?Do changes need to be made by the end of the month or the end of the week?
- What can I do without?
- How involved do my employees need to be in this process?
- What's my overall objective/goal?
Finding the right lean manufacturing equation for your own company is easier said than done.Observing other's methods will only get you so far.So, there are many companies who provide business owners trying to find a lean manufacturing technique that works for them, with a consultant.

Also, as it is with many specialized forms of work, there are many forms of literature, some electronic others hard-copy, that can prove useful in jump-starting the brainstorming needed to come up with effective ideas for your own ventures.

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