Thinking Lean: Top 12 “two-second improvements” of 2015Jun 18 2015, by News & Events in
At the start of last year, our team implemented a “Walk and Talk” program inspired by 2 Second Lean, a book by Paul Akers. In the book, Paul discusses the importance of thinking lean in everything you do. Team members are taught to improve and eliminate waste in small increments each and every week, or as we like to call them, “2 Second Improvements”. When added up, these incremental improvements lead to big savings in time and money.
Each Wednesday, our employees drop what they are doing and come together for the weekly “Walk and Talk”. During this time employees get the chance to walk to different workstations and talk about their “2 Second Improvements” they made that week. The weekly Walk and Talk allows team members to see different areas of the company and enforces a culture of continuous improvement.
So far this year, our second year of thinking lean, we have went on 24 weekly Walk and Talks and made over 130 total 2 Second Improvements!
Let’s look back at 12 of our best 2 Second Improvements so far:
In January, our team made 26 lean improvements.
- Julian changed the way Aluminum ingots are originally stacked to prevent having to re-stack them later.
- Dave found that leaving the lift chains down and unhooked after using them would prevent an unnecessary raising and lowering in the future.
In February, our team made 19 lean improvements.
- Debbie was able to eliminate a step and a sheet of paper in the process of sending product samples.
- Bruce re-located the tools necessary to turn off switches in one of the furnace breakers, to prevent an unnecessary search in case of emergency.
In March, our team made 36 lean improvements.
- Antwon added hooks and a shelf to store his reflective gear in the area it is most frequently used.
- Tom discovered that an electronic boarding pass (via QR code) was a faster way to get through the airport and eliminated the need for printing.
In April, our team made 26 lean improvements.
- Henry moved our sample buckets to a station near packaging in order to speed up the sample process.
- Robin took one of our important Salesforce reports and schedule it to run automatically the night before our weekly sales meeting.
In May, our team made 18 lean improvements.
- Jeff re-located the supply of storage barrels to a dedicated shelf for easy access.
- Shaun added a “Today” function to our Standard Operating Procedure documents to automatically update the “Effective From” date.
In June, our team has made 14 lean improvements.
- Josh started using the memory card adapter and port in his laptop to pull videos from his camera faster.
- Doug saved everyone time by eliminating a bi-weekly email that is no longer necessary to send.
With over 130 two-second improvements this year, there are more than five improvements shared with the company every week on average. Wow! This has led our team to always be thinking lean in order to save time and money.
If you would like to learn more about what it means to think lean, give us a call or come join us for our weekly Walk and Talk!