Is my lean programme sustainable?

Mar 3, 2017

Teams can debate endlessly on the tools and techniques required to deliver the breakthroughs required by their businesses.But the tools and techniques are only one segment of making a lean programme work.

Fundamentally the programme needs to be built around developing people if it is going to be sustainable. It should:

  • Enable people to see waste, overburden and unevenness in their environment
  • Equip teams with problem solving capability to solve those problems
  • Provide a safe arena to debate change and make change happen
  • Provide a structured approach to delivering changes so that people can easily engage
  • Support change at a daily level and at a breakthrough level
  • Recognise and promote success and positive behaviours

All of these points have people at the centre. Therefore, it becomes clear that the skills required to do this are not just lean skills. The team require leadership skills, debating skills, emotional intelligence, innovation, influencing skills and more besides.

A great lean programme will help to build people as it makes improvements. Imagine the organisation you could have after 3 to 5 years of developing these skills. The possibilities and opportunities that open up as a result are enormous.

So can you run a programme without these skills and all the work required to develop them? The answer is yes you can. You can even hire organisations like us to deliver it for you. This will supplement any shortfall you and will deliver results. However, if you support us to help develop those capabilities in-house then you can take away an enduring improvement system for your organisation.

Without that, the gains will last only for the short term and you will miss a huge opportunity to grow the capability of the business and why would not want that?