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LEAN SUPPLY CHAIN: LEARNING FROM THE TOYOTA PRODUCTION SYSTEM January 8, 2010

Posted by Bima Hermastho in Lean Six Sigma.
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The three big motor companies (the Big 3) – General Motors (GM), Ford & Chrysler almost dominated the global market in early twentieth century. In 1994, Toyota replaced Chrysler, and it became the global No. 2 motor manufacturer by squeezing out Ford in 2003. Since 2008, Toyota has replaced GM to be the largest automaker globally.

image How did Toyota achieve its success? It all started with the first President of Toyota Motor Corporation, Kiichiro Toyoda, who set up the company’s objective “to use small lot size with cheaper vehicles to compete with the cost of American motor companies by continuously reducing cost through waste elimination”. The second president, Eiji Toyoda, went further to improve Toyota’s manufacturing process. In 1950, after the Second World War, Toyota learnt the concepts of continuous material flow, process standardization and waste elimination from Henry Ford’s book, Today and Tomorrow. Moreover, Toyota developed one-piece flow and the concept of “Pull System” which was inspired by American supermarkets. After decades of practice and refinement, the above principles and the concepts form the core of judoka and just-in-time (JIT), making the Toyota Production System (TPS) more functional.

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THE ART OF LEAN PROGRAM MANAGEMENT December 21, 2009

Posted by Bima Hermastho in Lean Six Sigma.
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Tired of spinning your wheels on lean, Six Sigma, and other improvement projects that go on and on while producing preciously few results? Then you may want to put in place a business discipline called lean program management. Essentially, it’s the art of applying the principles of lean, Six Sigma, and constraints management to the actual management of those improvement projects.

Currently, the two most popular business improvement programs are lean and Six Sigma, which increasingly are being combined into an approach called lean/Six Sigma. But many organizations’ long-term efforts to apply those programs are running into difficulty. In many cases, these programs are running out of momentum–and in some cases, they have actually ground to a halt.

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