Case Study Chapter 16
The following case study examines an inquiry about lean training from a production manager to a professor. Although the case is short, the responses from both parties imply hidden concerns about lean management and philosophies. It is important to note that numerical data is not present and the analytics of this case is based of behavioral and philosophical indications from the involved parties. The backbone of this paper is to acknowledge the barriers of lean management benefits and implementation. It will consist of a brief introduction on lean philosophy, dissection of the case study, an overview of lean management results, and ...view middle of the document...
(Russell, Taylor. 2013)
The case centers on a manager from a production facility asking a professor, who has a background in lean management, for training. The professor describes his methods on the lean philosophy implementation and gives the manager his class schedule and requirements. The manager interrupts and states the professor’s methods don't fit his needs. The manager believes that the yearlong program of the professors can be done in two days and only for the frontline employees. He then goes on to describe a performance-based pay system that has been initiated by corporate. This system is based off of a rewards/coercive motivation and how a workers status would come from their output. The manager explains how the initiative is failing through a pilot program. He describes how the employees are unorganized and are lacking in priority understanding. He believes that introducing a lean philosophy will create more effective workers and validate the pay-based initiative. Both men have two different ideas on lean philosophies and implementations.
According to the professor’s methods, his teachings are long term based and the actual implementation takes about a year to instill. After the training is complete he certifies workers from the organization to continue the lean management and implies that the philosophy is a continuous concept that doesn’t contain an expiration period. He also mentions how both management and front-line employees are to be instructed on lean principles. This probably identifies his belief to be that all employees of the organization need to be on the same page. When there is only half of the workforce that know about an organization initiative (lean implementation) it becomes problematic and can create dissonance between departments. His method is long-term and centralizes an initiative among the members of an entire organization.
The DC manager has a more simplistic approach to lean philosophy. He believes the workshops can be taught in two days and that only the frontline employees need them. He also believes that the lien philosophies will help the current performance-based pay system and that it will help the employee’s meet/surpass the standards. The case leads the reader to believe that the professor has the correct way to implement a lean philosophy, however, the DC manager has some validity to his arguments. The professor’s methods favor long-term goals and build foundations within the organization, but because the implementation is lengthy there might be cost of the organization cannot forward, whether it be money or time. The manager’s idea of a two-day workshop doesn't seem realistic, but the idea of a short-term training seminar might have some rapid benefits to his organization. The fact that he doesn't believe management should be instructed in the lean principles puts his company at a disadvantage. As the workshops are short and higher management is unaware of the philosophy, the...