Principle 7 in Lean Management : Use visual controls


Use visual control so no problems are hidden

A plant was so disorganized, one day a Ford Taurus mysteriously disappeared. They even filed a police report. Months later, they found it, surrounded by inventory.

Ask to see a specific document, tool or file. Watch to see if the person can go and find it immediately.

The 5S programs for eliminating wastes

  1. Sort : keep only what is needed
  2. Straighten (orderliness) : a place for everything and everything in its place
  3. Shine (cleanliness) : to inspect and prevent the failure that could hurt the quality
  4. Standardize (create rules) : create rules to sustain the first 3S
  5. Sustain (self discipline) : use regular audits to stay disciplined

A manager must be able to walk everywhere and recognize if standard work or procedures are being followed.

Create the shadow of each tool and have clear indicators of minimum and maximum levels of inventory.

Clean it up. Make it visual.

“Clean up everything so you can see problems” – Fujio Cho

The content of this post is inspired by the book “The Toyota Way” – Jeffrey K. Liker

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