A Systems Approach to Operational Excellence

These days, organizations strive to do more with less – to do things economically and efficiently, all while maintaining a steady progression of improvement. In these regards, tools and efforts such as Lean, Six Sigma, Total Quality Management (TQM), as well as others, are often employed to track, manage and improve inputs, processes, and outputs.  However, these systems sometimes fail to yield the expected benefits and improvements.  Too, these systems often fail to be predictive; and if business cannot effectively pilot to the...

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Extending the Boundaries of Operational Excellence

Operational Excellence grew out of Lean Six Sigma (LSS), which got its start in manufacturing arenas. Even after years of proven adaptability across industries, many people still consider Lean Six Sigma to be applicable only to manufacturing. However, as more people are discovering, the Lean Six Sigma philosophy and methodologies can be applied to any area or endeavor, as long as an organization is willing to step beyond its current practices. Operational Excellence (Op Ex) consists of applying the philosophies and methodologies of Lean and...

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Voice of the Customer

All businesses, no matter their product or service, exist by virtue of satisfied customers.  In best and desired circumstances, those customers represent a base that sustains and grows. But it doesn’t happen by magic.  Business must satisfy customer expectations by delivery on needs and wants.  Complicating matters, there is a savvy customer class:  The Internet has enabled the ready review of, and reportage on, products and services; the delivery of surveys to e-mail recipients; discussion forums highlighting the good and the bad...

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Daily Management: The Hidden Ingredient for Op Ex Transformation

Daily Management: The Hidden Ingredient for Op Ex Transformation Do you face challenges instilling an aggressive continuous process improvement culture?  Are the improvements you make impactful and sustainable?  As we all know, implementing change is not easy, especially when a change involves altering people’s paradigms, actions and behaviors. People-related issues are often the most challenging issues we encounter when implementing Lean and Operational Excellence.  This is particularly true and most pronounced in organizations that are...

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Lean Is Much More Than a Cost Savings Program

Lean Is Much More Than a Cost Savings Program Organizations of all sizes and types are struggling to find ways to become more efficient and effective.  Cost reduction is the mantra everywhere and “Lean” is the word of the day.  Unfortunately, much of what is being done under the umbrella of Lean is not actually Lean in practice. What many don’t understand – or perhaps lose sight of – is that Lean is about a different way of doing business that results in cost savings.  Lean systematically focuses on comprehensive, continuous...

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