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Lean Blog Audio

Mark Graban reads and expands upon selected posts from LeanBlog.org. Topics include Lean principles and leadership in healthcare, manufacturing, business, and the world around us.Learn more at http://www.leanblog.org/audio Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support

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Standard Work for Being as Safe as Possible When Refueling Your Vehicle

http://www.leanblog.org/audio305 It's possible that I could start traveling again for my healthcare consulting work next month... or maybe in July. My colleagues at Value Capture aren't sure yet how this will work out, but clients are sharing their current plans for starting to re-open -- to a new normal, not the old normal. As I mentioned (if not buried) in a post last week, my wife and I relocated from Orlando to Los Angeles last week because she is starting a new job (we will still have our permanent home in Texas). Anyway, as the consultants start to think about traveling again, I have compiled some thoughts from my own research and experience since I'm the only one who has flown or stayed in hotels over the past two months, due to the relocation.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


19 May 2020

Rank #1

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Why Kaizen is an Important Differentiator for Japanese Whisky

This article caught my attention the other day, primarily because I like scotch, whisky (and whiskey and bourbon). The Japanese love scotch whisky and have long produced a product that's a variation of scotch -- Japanese whisky (the lack of a standardized spelling for whiskey is an endless debate). I'll settle on "whisky."The article: Japanese Whisky Got a Lot of Hype, But Can One Bottle Really Be the Best?Now, you might not care about "the brownest of the brown liquors" (Simpsons reference), but there's an interesting detail in the article about the Kaizen mindset of continuous improvement.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


5 Mar 2015

Rank #2

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General Jim Mattis on Leadership, Mistakes, and Defining Problems

http://www.leanblog.org/audio287 General Jim Mattis has been making the rounds to talk about his new book that is out today: Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead. "Learning to Lead" sounds like it could be the title of a book about Lean management. We're learning how to lead people, to lead improvement, to lead organizations. You might say we're "practicing leadership," myself included. A few things jumped out from an article and an NPR interview with Mattis that made me think about Lean and the challenges we face in various workplaces. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


3 Sep 2019

Rank #3

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The Patriots, Coach Belichick, Aspects of Lean Thinking,

http://leanblog.org/audio15I have lived in Boston two different times, but I'm hardly a New England Patriots fan. I realize they have been accused of cheating (the previous "Spygate" controversy where they violated league rules by videotaping the hand signals of opposition defensive coaches and the recent "deflategate" controversy).For an organization to be truly admirable, integrity has to come first. Integrity is non-negotiable. There are many questions about the Patriots...But, there were a few things that jumped out at me in a Saturday WSJ article on the Patriots and head coach Bill Belichick: "Deflategate Masks the Many Virtues of Belichick."--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


1 Feb 2015

Rank #4

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Jess Orr on What She Learned by Leaving Toyota

http://www.leanblog.org/audio291 Last week was our fifth annual KaiNexus User Conference (or "KaiNexicon" as we now call it). One of our keynote speakers was Jess Orr, a former Toyota engineer who shared perspectives on what it was like to now lead continuous improvement in another company. Jess has previously presented three webinars for us at KaiNexus (see links at the end of the post) and she always has something insightful to say. I took a lot of notes during her talk, so here are some of the highlights as I captured them.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


11 Oct 2019

Rank #5

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On Boeing, GM, and Hospitals… and Epic Battles Between Reality and Spokespeople?

Yesterday's blog post was about a situation (with my podcast hosting service) that triggered memories of my time at General Motors in 1995. Today's post is about a recent article on Boeing that definitely caused me to think of that broken, dysfunctional “pre-Lean” culture that I suffered through (and learned from) in my first year at GM. In 1995, nobody claimed GM was Lean so the expectations were low. They were who they were and my new plant manager in 1996 started to change things. Boeing is a company that has been pointed at as a great example of Lean Manufacturing, so it's troubling to read reports that suggest otherwise. From the New York Times: Claims of Shoddy Production Draw Scrutiny to a Second Boeing Jet Workers at a 787 Dreamliner plant in South Carolina have complained of defective manufacturing, debris left on planes and pressure to not report violations.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


30 Apr 2019

Rank #6

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Bob Lutz on Tesla, Threats, & Communication About Quality - and Implications for Healthcare

http://www.leanblog.org/audio282 Hat tip to Stan Feingold from StoreSMART (a Lean Blog sponsor) for sending me this article: Bob Lutz Talks Panel Gaps, Tesla, and Why Every Detail Matters -- Getting it right starts at the top.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


18 Aug 2019

Rank #7

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Putting Up Signs and Shooting Down Ideas

It's sad and unfortunate when leaders SAY they want a culture of continuous improvement, but don't walk the walk.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


19 Jan 2015

Rank #8

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Family Guy Skewers Marie Kondo (and 5S and Lean too?)

I haven't read it, but Marie Kondo's book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing has been a pop-culture phenomenon the past few years. I've seen some compare her process to the Lean practice of “5S.” Kondo says you should only keep an item if it “sparks joy.”--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


13 May 2019

Rank #9

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Inside Toyota's Takaoka #2 Line - Flexibility and Kaizen

This is an interesting article: Inside Toyota's Takaoka #2 Line: The Most Flexible Line In The World I had a chance to visit the 'Takaoka #1" line in February 2018 as part of my tour with Kaizen Institute. This article makes me wish we had been able to see Takaoka #2, but that sounds like a somewhat rare and special opportunity (even more special than visiting Toyota is normally).--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


11 Jun 2019

Rank #10

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A Hospital CEO Who Wants Other CEOs to “Give a Damn” About Their People

Here's an interesting column from Becker's Hospital Review, written by Michael Dowling, President and CEO, Northwell Health. I'm guessing he created the headline, since the phrase “give a damn” doesn't appear in the article: "Michael Dowling: CEOs — Give a damn about your people" Who are the CEOs he is speaking to who do NOT give a damn? What inspired him to write this?--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


1 May 2019

Rank #11

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Lean: A Combination of "Why?" and "Why Not?"

http://www.leanblog.org/audio281 When we have really sticky, complicated problems (like the widespread healthcare patient safety and quality problems), I think it's interesting to think about problems in the following terms... for a particular problem, which is true? It can't be solved (in general) That organization can't solve it (don't know how?) They won't solve it They don't need to solve it When we look at patient safety, there are many examples that show improvement is possible. So, it comes down to a question of "can't, won't, or don't need to?"--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


16 Aug 2019

Rank #12

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Maybe "Just Do Its" Should be Called "Just PDSA Its"?

http://www.leanblog.org/audio290 So, upon some reflection, it seems like "Just Do It" isn't really the right phrase to use. A classic suggestion box system has cards that start with listing a suggestion. That's, in a way, jumping to solutions. Kaizen isn't a suggestion box model. Maybe "Just PDSA It" is a more accurate phrase to use?--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


8 Oct 2019

Rank #13

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How PBCs (Process Behavior Charts) Can Enhance the Practice of OKRs (Objectives & Key Results)

https://leanblog.org/audio276 "Over the past year, I've heard about the “OKRs” methodology that is used in tech companies like Google. OKRs stands for Objectives & Key Results.  The approach (along with examples and case studies) are laid out in the book by venture capitalist John Doerr, Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs."  There are things I like about this model... and it reminds me of the Lean "Strategy deployment" practice... but I think it would be better with "Process Behavior Charts." #okrs #OKR #leanstartup #leanmanagement #business --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


20 May 2019

Rank #14

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Toyota, Respect for People (or "Humanity") and Lean

From 2013 -- http://www.leanblog.org/audio277 A principle that has been often discussed (and hopefully practiced) in the Lean community over the past few years is usually described as “respect for people.” A certain British rabble rouser recently said the following at a Lean conference: “All this respect for people stuff is horse sh*t,” and it is a “conventional Western management interpretation.” He mocked the idea of “respect for people programs,” although I'm not sure where such a standalone program has ever been attempted. That sounds like a strawman, the idea that a company would have a “respect for people” program. Let me explain why he's wrong — “respect for people” is not horse sh*t” — and we can explore some great links on “respect for people” in this post.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


25 May 2019

Rank #15

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My Talk: When Being Right is the Wrong Strategy for Change

I always enjoy the KaiNexus User Conference (now called KaiNexicon starting this year) and they ask me to give a talk each year. Last year, I gave a talk called “When Being Right is the Wrong Strategy for Change” and KaiNexus recently shared a nicely-shot video of that talk on YouTube. So. I'm sharing that here... and the blog post has a transcript I had done, annotated with some slides and links. You can also read a shorter summary via the KaiNexus blog. http://www.leanblog.org/audio275--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


17 May 2019

Rank #16

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What Chefs and Restauranteurs Say About Learning From Failures & Mistakes

http://www.leanblog.org/audio283 Anyway, this article caught my eye the other day: Top Chefs and Restaurateurs on the Best Lessons They Learned from Failures Check out the article for the detail, but here are the five lessons and I think they apply to Lean and other things we practice, with my commentary…--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


20 Aug 2019

Rank #17

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Our Toyota Tour Guide's Kaizen

From 2014 -- http://www.leanblog.org/audio293 We had an excellent English-speaking tour guide for our visit (she lived in Hawaii at one point). As we talked through the facility (up in a "catwalk" that gave good visibility down into the process), she would occasionally stop at pre-determined points to explain something about the process or about the Toyota Production System and its elements. At each stop, there was a box with a microphone and other audio/visual equipment and speakers. She didn't have to carry a microphone with her. The guide was carrying a bag, something between a briefcase and a large purse. One of our sharp-eyed tour attendees, a Chief Medical Officer from a Canadian hospital, noticed a hook that she would hang her bag on while stopped and talking. He asked her about the hook. Sure enough, it was a Kaizen improvement! And, it was her idea.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


23 Nov 2019

Rank #18

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"Lean Sigma" is Still Pretty Often Wrong on Lean

Here's look back at a post from 2011 that talks about some of the misunderstandings that are thrown around about Lean and Six Sigma, with some new content and an audio clip from a speaker who gets this very wrong.--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


29 Jan 2015

Rank #19

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When Old Habits and Old Science No Longer Make Sense - Evidence vs. Habit in Medicine and #Lean

http://www.leanblog.org/audio274 I find it really interesting when scientific facts and truth get superseded by new evidence. Science isn't supposed to be stubborn… it's OK to cast aside the old status quo when we learn something new (pay attention, “flat Earth” crowd). There are a lot of these themes, also, in a book I've been reading, The Case Against Sugar, by Gary Taubes. Some of the established science about low-fat diets being good for us might not really be true. How does this all apply in medicine and our practice of Lean?--- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lean-blog-audio/support


16 May 2019

Rank #20