Published Articles

Your Personal Lean Journey [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 01-02-18

In my most the recent column I wrote for IndustryWeek I explore the importance of your own personal lean journey. Your organization may not be started on its lean journey but that doesn’t mean you can’t be. When signing copies of my book, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Lean, I would

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Finding Improvement in the Margins [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 10-17-17

There are connections in every organization.  Some are easily seen while others are not. But, look closely and you will find them.  In the recent column I wrote for IndustryWeek I examined the waste that often occurs in these connections.  It is in these connections, in the margins, that there

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Puzzle pieces joined with a dollar bill underneath

The Hidden Costs of Batching [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 08-08-17

Have you ever been on the end of a batched process?  Chances are you have, either in your workplace or in your everyday life.  If you have ever been discharged from a hospital or experienced a yearly performance review, you were likely “batched”.  In the Lessons from Road the Column

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Learning is more than Attitude [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 06-13-17

In a column I wrote for Industry Week I shared some deliberate actions you can take to create a learning organization.  These actions were based on research I conducted that worked to bridge the philosophies of the lean school which had thought-leaders at the time such as Jim Womack and

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Chief Executive Magazine picks up on theme that lean is not just about process

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 04-20-17

My IndustryWeek column on the idea that talent matters has gotten more attention than I anticipated, with many notes and comments in personal conversations. Chief Executive Magazine picked up on the theme in their article “Lean Manufacturing is about people, not just process.” Here is some of their reference to

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Is Talent or Process Vital to Lean Success? It’s Not Really a Choice [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 04-11-17

Lean equals process improvement, right? Wrong. Lean is about people. We improve processes because bad processes beat good people. Good processes enable people. Good processes improve our consistency. But will a great process deliver greatness? Probably not, because talent is still required. This column for IndustryWeek, titled Is Talent or

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Do the work, improve the work

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 03-20-17

Sometimes, performance doesn’t come from big, bold, broad interventions. Sometimes, performance is just about improving our work design. This article from MIT Alumni Magazine highlights the work of Professor Nelson Repenning. Dr. Repenning was just beginning his faculty career when I was a student at MIT, and I’ve followed his

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Standardization is not for its own sake [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 01-30-17

I continue to surprise myself with the number of important topics that I have yet to write about, despite how many years I have written both blog posts and columns for first Assembly Magazine and now for several years IndustryWeek. This month I take on the topic of standardization. The

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Lessons from the Road: Making Oobeya Work

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 12-07-16

It’s hard to sound more jargony (yes, I made up that word) than oobeya, but its functionality for improving communication and collaboration for teams is unparalleled. And so, after IndustryWeek’s Jill Jusko described it in Obeya: The Brain of the Lean Enterprise, that opened the door for me to cover

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Where’s your lean team? [Lessons from the Road]

by Jamie Flinchbaugh on 10-05-16

This year, for my Industry Week column, I’ve tried to take on topics that may have many people disagreeing with me. It is one way to move the conversation. This is a topic that isn’t controversial as much as it is political and messy: where in the organization should I

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