Lean Manufacturing concept has brought new industrial revolution and the battle lines are clearly drawn. It is traditional mass production versus the trim and tidy lean Enterprising. Lean experts and past researchers plead; Lean production is a superior way for humans to make things. It provides better products in wider variety at lower cost. It provides more challenging and fulfilling work for employees at every level. The whole world should adopt lean production, and as quickly as possible. Henry Ford defined Lean Enterprising stating, “If it does not add value, it is waste”. This concept was later adopted by Toyota as the core idea behind the famous Toyota Production System (T.P.S). The Toyota Production System is the foundation of many books on “lean”. It is the story of Lean Production how Japan’s secret weapons in the global auto wars later revolutionized western industries. The concept of lean manufacturing was widely accepted. A Standard S.A.E J 4000:1999 was also released to specify Lean in detail.
The purpose of this book is to share the knowledge and experience gained through collaborative contribution – with a wide range of readers including; students, managers, entrepreneurs, industrial leaders, university professors, and self-learning professionals.
Implementation of lean practices mainly in automobile
and engineering industries provide valuable insight. Further, the book
describes how it can be applied to wider field of work including; shipbuilding,
information technology, environmental protection, transportation services and
performance management from human resource perspective. My presentations on
LEAN in conferences and published papers in international journals like;
Elsevier, IEEE, and David Publishing-USA are also included to provide valuable
inputs. This book recommends the solution for immediate problems faced by
industries and service sectors using lean principles and practices. The generic
but common and critical problems that are discussed in depth include; economic
crisis, global competition, scarce resources,
quality issues, waste generation, volatile market, global warming, and poor performance. These issues have also been examined by the author in his other book, “Management Paradox: Re-examined” as source of tension, dilemma and contradiction. Relevant tools and techniques that are addressed and applied include; Kaizen, Five ‘S’, Visual Management, Just in Time, Kanban System, One Piece Flow, Single Minute Exchange of Die, Total Productive Maintenance and Poka Yoke. For a specific reason mistake-proofing (Poka Yoke) has been elaborated in detail for exploring its effectiveness to add value in product and services. This powerful lean tool took a long time to acquire its place in the list of popular tools because it challenged the effectiveness of statistical process control towards achieving zero-defect. The quantitative and qualitative approaches that have been selected and used based on the field of work and situation will be found interesting by research scholars. Methods like correlation analysis, test of hypothesis, and analysis of variance (ANOVA) have been carried out using the quantitative technique. Qualitative approach has been used for lean and sustainable transport system to understand people’s belief, perspective and experience. This approach supported in handling the important issues of consent and confidentiality. The book also presents the arguments on potential limitations of the lean manufacturing strategy on one hand and criticism on drifting definition of lean on other hand. The book firmly suggests instant applicability of lean principles and practices in sectors like manufacturing and construction. The way to apply lean in other sectors including ICT in conjunction with present practices like; agile for knowledge to apply tools, scrum for experience-based self-direction etc. are recommended. These sector- specific practices are supported by lean principles but the book discovers that exclusively focusing on software development without considering upstream and downstream operations severely limit the benefits. Therefore lean principles support agile and scrum and take much beyond software development. The ideas and recommendations offered in this book can be used for further implementation of lean in a large number of organizations and different fields including MSME, service-providing industries, healthcare, construction management, management education, and for army reforms. A leaner, modern military is the need of the hour.