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A Comprehensive Guide to Value Stream Mapping Symbols

Value Stream Mapping (VSM) is a valuable tool for process managers and teams alike. The pursuit towards a lean process starts with the evaluation of the current state process and identifying wasteful activities. If you’ve seen a value stream map before, you’d know that there are many symbols used to make one. Now, don’t be scared if you haven’t done a VSM before. We have rounded up the list of value stream mapping symbols you need to know to create your own.  What is Value

Value Stream Mapping – Defining how to maximize the flow of value delivered

“Control your process, control your projects” In 2002 I worked for a multi-national technology organization delivering awesome products to consumers around the world. In the early 2000s, the company was in a race to be the best product company on the planet. I was on an Enterprise team whose duty it was to help the Business document how different pieces of the organization worked together to deliver value and enable products to be built “better, faster, and cheaper”. Looking back it was the right play

Value Stream Mapping

Inefficient processes slow the growth of any business or organization. Waste, or Muda in Japanese, is one of what causes processes to be inefficient. It is then vital to be able to spot these wastes and address them. This is where Value Stream Mapping comes into play. Taiichi Ohno, the founder of the Toyota Production System, said:                - “All we are doing is looking at the timeline, from the moment the customer gives us an order to the

2022-08-19T11:37:37-07:00July 5th, 2018|

The Gemba Walk: Identify Improvements at ‘The Place where Value is Created’

When it comes to business improvements, it’s important that leaders know what processes in the organization they need to work on and be able to come up with ways to add value to every task involved. But given the large bulk of managerial tasks most business leaders have to face daily, it’s easy for them to lose sight of the real issues that need to be resolved or improved. As a solution to this problem, Toyota’s process improvement leaders came up with a business practice

2022-12-09T12:03:42-07:00June 2nd, 2020|Tags: , , , |

5 Lean Management Principles and Why You Should Implement Them

Have you ever wondered how to improve customer satisfaction rates and to manage your business effectively while avoiding wastes of different kinds that may hinder process efficiency? Then, Lean management could be the right path to follow. In this article, we take a look at what Lean management is, its principles, advantages and possible tools. What is Lean Management? Lean management refers to a type of business approach that aims at improving efficiency and customer satisfaction by decreasing the time of non-value-added activities while optimizing

2023-07-18T21:16:56-07:00July 4th, 2023|Tags: , , |

Solve Virtual Workplace Challenges Using Kanban

Although the pandemic is almost over, most of us still find ourselves in remote work settings.  Remote work is tricky, it gives us back the time we lose in commuting, but also robs us of our boundary between home and work. Not to mention, the hurdle of having to adapt to working remotely. It’s hard to collaborate while you’re not in the same room with your colleagues, and it’s even harder when your team is distributed in different time zones. There is a solution to

2023-02-24T02:24:50-07:00February 24th, 2023|

Kanban Zone Partner Program

Maximize Your Impact: Join Forces with Kanban Zone Are you ready to advance your business and forge a rewarding partnership with Kanban Zone? As a Partner, you can elevate your services, engage with experts, influence product development, and reap exclusive benefits. Discover why becoming a Partner is a strategic decision that can transform your business and improve your client's experiences. Become a Partner Why Partner with Kanban Zone? Expand Your Business: Enhance your service offerings by integrating the powerful Kanban Zone platform and

2023-09-27T09:30:31-07:00August 15th, 2021|

What are Process Bottlenecks and How to Manage Them

All organizations aim to achieve a flawless process flow. This is one reason why we have so many project management trends and approaches available. It’s just a matter of choosing one that works for your team. But no matter how you manage your project, there might have been times when you’ve encountered a problem. Maybe one of the team members was not available to complete his tasks, which caused delays to some processes and a backlog has built up. This only means one thing: you

The Toyota 3M Model: Identifying Wastes in Your Processes

The Toyota 3M model is an age-old concept that remains relevant to this day. Many manufacturing concepts and strategies are influenced by the Toyota 3M Model. It has helped reframe the mindset of business leaders on how they manage and eliminate wastes in their processes. Companies often look at how to generate more revenue by creating new products or revenue streams. But with the Lean methodology and the use of the 3M model, companies have learned another way to improve their revenue. Identifying wastes has

2022-12-06T16:06:19-07:00May 12th, 2021|Tags: , , , , |

Lean Manufacturing Principles and Concepts You Should Know About

Companies constantly pursue strategies and techniques to gain a competitive advantage and continuously improve their business. Companies look for measures to keep their costs in check, increase their productivity, and improve profitability. One of the most popular concepts that have helped transform companies is lean manufacturing. Let’s explore how Lean manufacturing helps businesses take their game to a whole new level.  What is Lean Manufacturing? To understand Lean manufacturing, we need to talk about Lean thinking. Lean thinking is a methodology that focuses on optimizing

2022-12-07T13:21:12-07:00February 9th, 2021|Tags: , , , , , |

Implementing Lean Principles: Lean Six Sigma for Law Firms

Times are changing even for age-old institutions such as the legal industry. In the past, law firms would charge clients in terms of billable hours. Clients were forced to pay based on this arrangement no matter what or how long it took to close the case. But today’s consumer-market behavior is different. While billable hours have not been eradicated, clients have learned to treat legal services like any commodity or on-demand service. They have access to more information than ever before thanks to the help

What is Lean Agile Project Management?

Much is demanded of businesses in this modern world. Competition is tough. Consumer standards are high. And the market has never been as technology-driven as before. For businesses that want to thrive, they know that having a good product alone is insufficient. They need to look into how they make the product and run the company. A good product that sells needs a sustainable process that can back it up. These are processes that ensure quality, cost-savings, and maximum value are driven out of the

Lean Six Sigma

Lean Six Sigma is a discipline of creating customer value efficiently with quality and consistency. It is a process improvement methodology that focuses on removing waste and controlling process variation to improve efficiency and provide high levels of customer value. Lean Six Sigma combines the tools and techniques of Lean and Six Sigma. To better understand Lean Six Sigma, let’s discuss the Lean methodology and Six Sigma and how these two form a supercharged process improvement technique when combined. What is Lean? Key influencers

2022-08-15T18:05:45-07:00February 28th, 2020|

Three Signs It’s Time for Process Optimization and How to Do It

In today’s highly volatile and changing business market, companies are challenged to innovate for them to thrive. Strategy and innovation consulting firm, Innosight, highlighted in their 2018 Corporate Longevity Forecast how S&P 500 companies’ lifespans continue to shrink - from 33 years in 1964 down to 24 years in 2016. Studies show it would continue to shrink to 12 years come 2027. Companies that take innovation and processes optimization front and center are poised to overtake those that don’t. Lean processes allow companies to be

Lean Farming: Applying Lean Manufacturing Principles in Farming

While it’s true that Lean thinking started in the automotive manufacturing industry, it has worked its way through other industries over the decades. Whether it be knowledge-work or traditional production, Lean thinking has proven to help businesses make their process more efficient. It has since penetrated the agricultural sector. The concept of Lean farming is making waves in the agricultural sector, giving birth to progressive farms all over the world. With the challenges that come with climate change and overpopulation, farmers are pushed to rethink their

2022-12-14T17:57:30-07:00December 26th, 2019|Tags: , , , , |

How to Amp Business Profits with Kanban

If you’re reading this, then you might be asking yourself whether going through the process of implementing kanban in your business is worth it. Or maybe you’ve been tasked with the difficult job of convincing your CEO to implement Kanban. Let’s face it. When it comes to pitching ideas to senior leaders, there’s no better way than talking in terms that they all understand - the business bottom line. When you can show them how kanban is aligned with your business’ financial goals, you can

Kanban and Lean Six Sigma: A Match Made in Project Management Heaven

Increasing productivity and improving process flow are the main goals of every project manager. Eliminating unnecessary and repetitive tasks while reducing waste are two additional goals on their checklists. The ultimate goal, of course, is to plan and execute projects more accurately and more efficiently. Luckily, there is a plethora of tools and methodologies out there for project managers to choose from and achieve these goals. Most PMs go for one methodology or another. But we believe that to get the most out of your

Kanban Training

Our training services are designed to serve as a single course or a full curriculum to educate students of best practices and introduce specific methodologies. Our training format includes collaborative workshops and our coaches will create an environment to generate active participation from all participants. Although our training sessions promote hands-on experience through exercises, we highly recommend including coaching in addition to training sessions to ensure that the learning truly sticks. Talk with a Coach Below is our list

2023-11-24T12:53:50-07:00November 24th, 2018|

Kanban Pull System

A Pull System is a lean technique used to control the flow of work by only replacing what has been consumed. This means that the trigger for work to be done is when a customer demands for it. To better visualize a Pull System, take for example, a vending machine. Products will only be replenished when the stocks have run out. The suppliers won’t overstock the vending machine because each lane has a set capacity. If there is no product demand, they won’t replenish it.

2023-09-18T05:56:29-07:00November 1st, 2018|

Step by step exercise for creating a Kanban board

Build an effective Kanban board... There are many ways to create a Kanban board online. For example, you could use the value stream mapping technique by leveraging the mapped activities in your value stream as columns for your board. Over the years, we have refined our approach, and it's now a simple 5 step exercise. The key is to let the team associated with the process follow this exercise. Also, they build their board to keep improving over time. You can also leverage our coaching

2023-09-18T05:37:47-07:00September 3rd, 2018|