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Lean is the concept of efficient manufacturing/operations that grew out of the Toyota Production System in the middle of the 20th century. It is based on the philosophy of defining value from the customer’s viewpoint, and continually improving the way in which value is delivered, by eliminating every use of resources that is wasteful, or that does not contribute to the value goal. Lean is centered on preserving value with less work; with the ultimate goal of providing perfect value to the customer through a perfect value creation process that has zero waste. This is done by empowering every individual worker to achieve his or her full potential, and so to make the greatest possible contribution.

The goal of empowerment is based on the idea of showing respect for people. Respect for people extends beyond just the end customer and can include the workers, suppliers, and society. For the end customer, Lean strives to maximize value delivery while minimizing waste in the process. Lean aims to maximize human potential by empowering workers to continuously improve their work. Lean leaders facilitate this goal through problem-solving training. They help workers grow professionally and personally, allowing them to take pride in their work.

At the heart of the Lean philosophy is the concept of “kaizen” or continuous improvement. The goal of continuous improvement is to eliminate all waste in the value delivery process. To do this, Lean leaders must go where value is created – commonly known as the gemba. At gemba, they often spend their time coaching and developing their people. They encourage workers to actively identify problems and look for opportunities for improvement.

Therefore the fundamental purpose of lean is to improve organizational performance by better serving our customers. By reducing and eliminating waste, and reducing cycle time we can reduce errors and respond more quickly to the needs of our customers. To be a sustainable business, PDO has launched a Lean program in 2009 and it has grown across the business over the years. There are now CI value streams for each directorate including MSEM all working towards becoming a leading organization in CI.

Our primary purpose is to build CI capability within MSEM, and support the teams with CI Diverse execution to assist the teams in strengthening and leaning their critical processes to maximize value add.