When it comes to delivering value and optimizing the work process, lean management is considered to be a universal management tool. The concept of lean management is becoming very popular in the business world.
The core value and the positive impact on the company’s overall performance, has made Lead Management to appear as a Universal management tool. You can apply the Lean management training concept to any business or production process. For instance, you can apply this to the manufacturing process, marketing, and software development.
3 ideas of Lean management
The lean methodology revolves around 3 simple ideas
- Delivering value from the customer’s perspective
- Eliminate waste
- Continuous improvement
What is Lean Management all about?
Lean methodology is about continuously improving the work purpose and the people. It shows light on shared responsibility and shared leadership instead of trying to have control over the entire work process. The two principal pillars of the lean methodology are respected for people and continuous improvement.
This concept recognizes the very natural fact that a good idea or initiative can be sparked at any level of the hierarchy. Lean methodology never forgets to trust the people who are doing the job and has a better idea of how it should be done.
Origin of lean
It all started in the late 1940s and aimed to reduce the process that doesn’t bring value to the end product. This idea gives a significant improvement in productivity efficiency cycle time and cost-efficiency. This notable impact was recognized by every industry, and now it is spread across all thriving industries of the world. Now it has been evolved with five basic principles.
These five principles help startups to be more flexible and responsive to the changes. From a business standpoint, the ultimate aim of the Lean Management concept is to reduce the product development cycle and soon discover whether the distance concept is viable. Many government structures, marketing professionals, and others are also using this methodology now.
It is also essential to understand that lean management did not develop overnight. It has evolved gradually from the contributions and ideas of many people and the observation.
The five basic lean principles
- Identify value
This is what every company is trying to do. They are trying to give away the product or services for which customer is ready to pay money. To do these, companies need to add value, which is derived from the customers’ needs. The value exactly lies in the problem that you are trying to solve for the customer.
It is for that solution your customer will be willing to pay money. In clear terms, any other activity or process that cannot bring value to the end product is absolutely waste. Thus, it becomes crucial to identify the value that you want to deliver.
- Value stream mapping
This, you will be working on the workflow of the company. It should include all the actions and the people who are involved in the process of delivering the end product to the customer. This will help you to identify those spots of the process, which is bringing no value.
Application of the linked principle of value stream mapping will give you where value has been generated and in what proportion. This will envisage easily to you and tell which process is owned by what teams and who is responsible for estimating, evaluating, and improving that particular process. So now, you can easily detect the steps that do not bring value and eliminate them.
- Creating a continuous workflow
Once you have worked on the value stream, you have to make sure that the workflow of each team will remain smooth. However, it takes a little time. For any organization, cross-functional teamwork is necessary while developing a product or service. It is very common for bottlenecks and introductions to appear. You can make it easy by breaking the work into small batches and visualizing the workflow. Through this, you can easily detect and remove the process roadblocks, if any.
- Create a pull system
Now with a stable workflow in which your team can deliver the work much faster with less effort, the next step is to create a pull system. The product is called only when there is demand in it. You can optimize resources and deliver the products or services when there is an actual need.
- Continuous improvement
You have to go through all the previous steps and lead to building your lean management system. Always remember that your system cannot be static and isolated. Many problems can occur in every step of the workflow. So you must make sure that all the employees on every level of the companies are involved in improving the process. You can continuously increase the improvement invariably with the use of many different techniques.
Benefits of lean management
The ever increasing popularity of lean management principles is from the apparent fact that it improves every aspect of a work process. There are significant advantages that the managers can benefit from, and they are listed below.
Focus – By the application of lean, you can reduce the waste activities. Therefore, your entire workforce will be focused on those activities which bring in actual value.
Improving productivity and efficiency – The productivity and efficiency of the employees will increase as they are focused on delivering value. They will not be distracted with unclear tasks.
Smarter process – With the establishment of the pull system, you will deliver the work only if there is an actual demand, which will lead to the next one.
Better use of resources – When your production is based on actual demand, you will not relentlessly use all the resources. You will use only those resources which are needed.
Need for lean management
Lean management is a basic guide for building a stable organization. It can continuously evolve and help to identify the actual problems and eliminate them. The main purpose of lean management is to create value for customers through the optimization of resources. Moreover, it focuses on creating a stable workflow based on actual customers’ demand. Continuous improvement is a significant part of Lean Management, which will ensure that every employee is involved in the process of improving.