Consultants in Lean Manufacturing Á Manufacturing Strategy

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Articles & Information
Title Description
Principles of Lean Manufacturing A short summary of essential elements and themes with links to related areas.
Lean Manufacturing History A short historical perspective on Lean Manufacturing from the 19th century to the 21st; from Eli Whitney to Henry Ford to Taiichi Ohno.
A Bomber An Hour A Production Miracle at Willow Run-- how Charles Sorensen designed a factory that built a four-engine B24 bomber every 60 minutes.
Balancing The Work In Workcells Good balance is one of the major sources of work cell efficiency. The methods shown here go far beyond the usual "Line Balance" approach.
Designing Kanban Systems Kanban production control is simple yet subtle; empowering and also threatening; robust yet delicate; both adaptable and rigid; easy to explain but difficult to understand. This article describes kanban systems and their design and includes the kanban game.
Stabilizing Scheduling Systems Article describes self-generating instability and unpredictability in -scheduling systems. Theory from Automatic Controls, Cybernetics, Systems Theory and Chaos. Explains why Kanban works so well.
Mixed Model Production Articles discuss the oft-ignored aspect of Lean known as Mixed Model Production.
Does TQM Payoff on the Bottom Line? TQM has been maligned as a costly fad that does nothing for shareholders. This quantitative study demonstrates otherwise.
Implementation Series Compilation of our series on implementing Lean Manufacturing-- strategy, planning and timing.
Lessons In Leadership– Twelve O'clock High Major Attila Bognar discusses charismatic leadership as portrayed in the classic film "Twelve O'clock High". Article reprinted from "Military Review"
Lean Leadership Series Compilation of our web pages on Lean Manufacturing Leadership and Charismatic Leaders.
Quality of Strategic Decisions Strategic decisions are usually based on factors that are non-quantitative, conditional and uncertain. this article explains how to know if your strategic decision is a good decision.
Team Development Series This series of articles discusses Team Development. It includes forming, storming, norming and performing. It also discusses team conflict and the necessary leadership, management and environment for teamwork.
Decoding Toyota's DNA Like DNA in an organism, corporate culture guides the activities and growth of individuals (cells). This summary of a classic Harvard Business Review article explores the unique characteristics of Toyota's culture that led to the Toyota Production System and Lean Manufacturing.
The Great Nuclear Fizzle at Babcock & Wilcox This case study in Manufacturing Strategy has been used in many graduate schools ever since it was developed by Wickham Skinner. Reprinted from Fortune magazine.
Lean Accounting This download has a composite of our web pages on accounting issues as well as Glen navis', excellent paper on Volume Adjusted Costing (VAC).
Volume Adjusted Costing Glen Navis wrote this article about a simple way to allocate overhead. Volume Adjusted Costing is accurate enough for practice and far simpler than ABC.
Capacity Inventory & Variability How high utilization and Little's Law leads to decreased delivery performance. This has important implications for manufacturing, finance and marketing strategy.
Ergonomics In Cellular & Lean Manufacturing Ergonomics and how it can improve workcells, reduce injuries and increase productivity.
5S Fast & Simple Articles on 5S, who what, when and why it works and how to implement it.
Cycle Counting In Lean Manufacturing Accurate inventory records are essential for many reasons. These articles cover the essentials and then go beyond.
IMS Implementation Article This article was published in the British magazine "Management Services". It is similar to our "Lean Implementation" article.
Pioneers of Lean Interview with Norman Bodek who was a longtime friend of Shigeo Shingo and acquaintance of Taiichi Ohno. Personalities and careers of these founders of the Toyota Production System.
Learning Curves in Manufacturing & Marketing Strategy How learning curves can predict cost reduction for individual workers, workcell teams, factories and entire industries. Why this is important for marketing strategy and manufacturing strategy.
Articles & Information
Title Description
All About Kaizen Explores Kaizen Events or "Blitz'" and why they cannot substitute for Lean Manufacturing Strategy. Several examples illustrate.
Action Learning Small teams address real problems and learn from them. The most important aspect of Action Learning is its ability to promote cultural change. Article explores Action Learning and the contrast with Kaizen.
Lean In Hard Times Series of articles illustrates how companies have coped with recession, depression, war and financial disaster using Lean principles.
Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) Breakdowns are not inevitable. This article tells why and reviews the essentials of Total Productive Maintenance.
Inventory Speaks! What you can learn about processes, scheduling and operations from an inventory analysis and how to perform the analysis.
Apple, Foxconn & Manufacturing Strategy How Apple Computer bungled strategy in their 1984 "Factory of The Future" and how they and their partner, Foxconn, are enjoying great success today. This case illustrates specific application of Manufacturing Strategy principles.

Tools, Templates, Games, etc.
Title Description
Lean Manufacturing Assessment Tool A Lean Manufacturing assessment tool that rates your factory with respect to Lean principles. Answer the questions (not always easy) and see where your organization stands.
Facility Planning Tools (Download) Excel templates and paper forms for facility planning. Taken from "Facilities and Workplace Design".
The Kanban System Game Simulation of a Kanban system. Interactive program teaches operation and relationships between capacity, inventory, & lot size. Excel Format.
Quality Control Screensaver An artist's view of "Quality Control" at some companies. This screensaver takes some "getting used to."
Charismatic Leadership Self-Assessment Test your inclination for Charismatic Leadership
Value Stream Mapping Symbols Symbols for VSM and Process Mapping. WMF and BMP formats for CAD and graphics programs.
Cycle Count Estimator Excel Template estimates the required frequency of cycle counts and the results.
Warehouse Time Standards Pick times calculated for various warehouse situations and equipment.

Books, Videos & Banners Available for Purchase
Title Description
The Human Side of Lean Manufacturing In this unique Lean Manufacturing video, five workers explain how they designed and built their own workcell. This video is the ideal introduction to Lean and Cellular Manufacturing for the shop floor.
Value Stream & Process Mapping This book is a practical guide to Value Stream and Process Mapping with 150 pages and 75 illustrations. It has detailed instructions for dealing with high-variety, low-volume processes. The book also covers the more subtle aspects facilitation. Available in hardcopy and electronic editions.
Facilities & Workplace Design This book has important chapters on Site Planning and the design of Workcells. A must-have before re-arranging your factory. PDF Download.
Guide To Cycle Counting This short book takes the mystery out of cycle counting. It is for practitioners who want inventory accuracy quickly and simply. It has 74 pages, 34 illustrations and 11 tables.
5S In A Nutshell Giant Banner Our "5S In A Nutshell" banner summarizes what it is, why you should do it, who does it, when it is done, and how to go about it. Giant 3'x6' banner for training room or shop.
TPM In A Nutshell Giant Banner  Our "TPM In A Nutshell" graphic depicts the major elements of TPM and some of the dynamic effects .Giant 3'x6' banner for classroom or shop.
Warehouse Design & Modernization Guide This massive sourcebook for warehouse design is packed with over 700 pages of illustrations, procedures and design data. It explains how to analyze, select, design and evaluate warehouse operations, plans and equipment.

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The Strategos Guide To Value Stream and Process Mapping goes far beyond symbols and arrows. In over 163 pages it tells the reader not only how to do it but what to do with it. More info...

Strategos Guide to Value Stream & Process Mapping