The popularity of Six Sigma is on the rise, and more companies are looking into integrating lean methodologies in their workflow everyday. And yet, to the end consumer, these changes are usually unknown. Take a look around you on a busy commercial street, and while you’ll probably see many products of lean efforts, you would never even know that was the main reason for their success. And yet, the number of areas that are constantly being improved thanks to lean is on a rapid rise.
Building More Efficiently and Sustainably
Considering that lean originated in manufacturing, it makes sense that one of the main fields that are adopting it right now is construction work. There is a lot that can be improved in a typical building project by following lean methodologies, especially when you consider the huge amounts of waste that a typical building can generate while it’s being constructed.
This isn’t just beneficial to construction companies either. Among those that reap the huge benefits of lean methodologies in construction work are homeowners themselves, who are able to enjoy better property values and more active development of the land around them. On the other hand, by always keeping the future in mind (thanks to the notion of continuous improvement), we can ensure that major construction work is done in a sustainable way that leaves the possibility for even more improvements in the future.
Climbing Through the Ranks in Sports
Many of us enjoy watching sports, and yet we don’t always realize the huge importance of lean methodologies and continuous improvement in this arena. The reality of the situation is that many professional sports teams nowadays are looking into Six Sigma and similar ideas in order to develop a more rigid process for improving their performance, and it looks like this could become the next big thing in the world of high-class sports.
American football in particular has shown some interesting results related to applying lean-like thinking to their playing, and in some cases it even sounds like the teams are doing that without even knowing what lean is to begin with. They just naturally reach the conclusion that this style of thinking and development is conductive to constantly improving the performance of the team, which of course is at the core of all professional, high-ranking sports.
Making the Fast Food Industry Even Faster
Process optimization and waste reduction are among the core values of large fast-food chains like McDonald’s. Dig deep into the employee manuals of similar companies, and you’ll see amazing attention to detail in everything – down to how many seconds it should take to cook a single burger patty. Deviating from those norms is penalized, which is often seen in a negative light by employees of those companies, and yet the final result is clear – they’re able to meet huge demands with an optimal use of resources.
Even if they don’t refer to lean methodologies and Six Sigma by their exact names, once you take a step back and carefully look at the big picture behind these organizations, it becomes quite clear that lean is indeed at the core of their work philosophy. Again, they might have a different name for it, but once you start examining how they deal with their waste and how they set everything up to be aligned with the idea of continuous improvement, you won’t really doubt what you’re seeing.
It’s the same in every successful company in this market, and only those that are able to organize their resources down to the last cent are the ones that ultimately prevail and end up in the spotlight. It’s a rapidly evolving market, and thinking in a lean way is very conductive to doing business in this field.
Those are just a few examples – the reality is that lean is all around us nowadays, and it will probably keep getting more and more pronounced in all spheres of our lives. It makes perfect sense that people would like the idea of adopting lean in their own lines of work, as it has a proven track record of successfully pushing businesses forward to success. As long as your company’s process development and improvement are guided by someone who understands lean methodologies, you can expect to progress very fast.