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Using Your Lean Manufacturing Tools Effectively

When you are dealing with lean manufacturing in any way you need to be able to understand all of the various lean tools that are out there. The goal of lean is to help you in eliminating waste and cutting costs for the company but if you aren't using the right tools and your staff is not sold on the tools that you are using, you have a long road ahead of you. It is important to know what lean manufacturing is all about and to really understand what you are getting yourself into before you just dive into it head first. Here are some of the common lean tools that you will learn about as you research what lean manufacturing is:

- The 5 S Method
- Poka Yoke
- Kanban
- Just In Time
- 7 Wastes
- Kaizen
- Takt time
- Value Stream Mapping

There are many others but these tend to be some of the most popular tools used when creating an environment that is focused on lean.

Learning how to get rid of waste and to really focus your efforts on being able to cut costs and improve productivity for the organization can take time. You have to learn if you have a company that is a candidate for lean. You cannot create this type of company overnight. You have to really focus your efforts on being able to understand what is expected of you but also to see that management is what drives lean. You need to be able to show your employees that lean is important to you and that you believe in it for your employees to see the benefits and to believe as well. Setting the right example for them can really go a long way in the proper development of a lean environment.

One way to work on lean is to choose a lean tool and test it out in a small way. Doing a small test is a great way to help you understand what you want to work on and what you can improve if you will take the time to understand it. It also helps your employees to see that lean can have positive outcomes with the right implementation and dedication to it. As long as you will commit and follow through, you will see some positive changes that will arise from lean. In many cases employees will be able to see changes in the way that their jobs are done. They can easily become more productive and effective in their job duties when they start to grasp onto the concept of lean and to use it in their lives. Commit to lean and use good training to help your employees understand how lean works.

Different lean tools will require different types of training. You need to look at the lean tools that you want to use and attend training seminars and programs for them before just implementing them. You then need to be in charge of training your staff on how to use the lean tools and to give them the right type of support and guidance that they need to make lean into a successful thing within your company. Employees need to have training to know what they are doing and they also need to have the right training in order to help them continue on the right path. Strong communication is important to the organization if you would like to develop lean manufacturing in the right way. Implement new lean tools if you feel that you have been able to master other tools and you want to try looking for additional ways to boost productivity and eliminate wastes!

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