Deliver 6+ Sigma Manufacturing Excellence, a Competitive Advantage Attained by a Maniacal Focus on Process Improvement
Manufacturing Improvement. 6+ Sigma performance is not necessary but, manufacturers that are running at less than 4.25 Sigma are leaving profits on the table. Increase Operational Excellence by operating like Toyota.
The Toyota Production System uses inventory strategically. For example, their Just-In-Time system receives parts every 2 hours. As a result, strategically placed inventory helps their andon system absorb 800 pulls a year while minimizing disruption.
6+ Sigma Systems such as the Toyota Production System Benefits include:
- OPERATING AT GREATER THAN 6 SIGMA
- ANDON CONSTANT DEFECT ERADICATION (THANK YOU TAIICHI OHNO).
- MINIMIZE ASSEMBLY LINE WORKERS.
- “PULL” THROUGHOUT THE ASSEMBLY LINE (BUILD TO ORDER).
- INCREASE COMPETITIVENESS THROUGH OPERATIONAL EXCELLENCE.
- CERTAINLY, A WHOLE COMPANY QUEST FOR PERFECTION.
- DIRECTION TO EXCELLENCE BY GUIDING PRINCIPLES.
- CONSEQUENTLY, BUILD A CORPORATE CULTURE OF GREATNESS.
- INVENTORY IS USED STRATEGICALLY.
- EXPLORE MOVING TO LEAN PRODUCTION.
- CONSTANTLY STRESS AND MEASURE THE ASSEMBLY LINE.
- FINALLY, STRATEGIC SUPPLIERS DECREASE PRICES, YEAR OVER YEAR.
The Toyota Production System is a System
A manufacturing company is a system. The system is comprised of Value Streams. The Toyota Production System is Toyota’s System. The Toyota Production System comprises every other system needed to make an automobile. That includes Toyota, customers, and suppliers. By including all these elements into their system it has created the greatest system in the world.
Toyota’s system integrates seamlessly with its suppliers. Toyota will even send its own employees to its suppliers in order to improve the integration. That is a benefit both for Toyota and for the suppliers.
Toyota’s integration with its customers is something they only do in Japan.
This view of your manufacturing business creates Operational Excellence and competitive advantage.
The Toyota Production System, Manufacturing Improvement to 6 Sigma:
Manufacturers exist in a competitive environment. Manufacturing Improvement by using The Toyota Production System, above all, creates Operational Excellence. Though the following list seems simple, it is not. However, this is the path to 6 Sigma Manufacturing Operational Excellence:
- Guidance to 6 Sigma
- Identify Value Added
- Map the Value Stream
- Create Flow
- Establish Pull
- Above all, Seek Perfection
Cost of Quality vs. Sigma
That is to say, the Cost of Quality is onerous on those operating at lower Sigmas. As Philip B. Crosby taught in his book: “Quality is Free” poor quality costs include:
- increased warranty costs,
- rework costs,
- customer satisfaction costs to reputation,
- liability costs,
- and so on.
For Manufacturing Improvement, review this 9-minute video that highlights just the cost of failed products. It ignores other costs such as warranty and reputation for a manufacturing company building a product:
A Mass vs. Lean Production Comparison
This is a comparison of Mass and Lean Production using a River Ecosystem as an example. Mass Production is department-focused and Lean Production is customer-focused. For an example take a look at this 5 min video:
Build Your Lean Production System
Mass Production is full of waste (inventory) and departmental-based instead of Lean Production, the future of manufacturing. In Mass Production each department wins by performing fastest but that doesn’t mean your product production is faster. Speeding up the fastest performer instead of the slowest performer may not help overall performance. Manufacturing Improvement means moving to Lean Production and measuring the performance of the whole Value Stream plus each process. Therefore if you want to move to Lean Production, watch this video:
Stress Your Assembly Line Like Toyota
Manufacturing Improvement is accomplished by Improving Assembly Line performance is key performance improvement. This is accomplished by constantly stressing your Assembly Line. Stressing your assembly line improves assembly line performance, creates a team approach to problem-solving, and builds good stress. Likewise, you measure assembly line stress levels with andon calls:
Manufacturing Improvement by Managing your Metrics
The Toyota Production System runs on Metrics. Subsequently, I have listed the Metrics in this video. That is to say, Metrics are based on measuring the value delivered with a Value Stream. As a result, management requires the measurement of Metrics to monitor the production heartbeat and measure improvements:
Manufacturing Improvement by Seeking Perfection
Toyota constantly seeks Manufacturing Improvement and Perfection through a powerful program named Kata. Kata delivers Continuous Improvement, Policy Propagation, and Realization. Above all, it is a program, not a build-on. Subsequently, it requires understanding the Value Delivered with Value Streams. Kata delivers 11 Continuous Improvement ideas/person/year. To clarify, all ideas in a manufacturing business benefit direction. This 13-minute video takes you through the whole detailed process. If you want to see this in written detail, visit my Lean Business website linked here. This video is just an overview:
Toyota Seeks Perfection and you should too. This is been a secret of Toyotas that was not discovered until recently. This secret gives Toyota a competitive advantage that continues into the future. If you want to be the best manufacturing system in the world attaining 6+ Sigma performance, this is one of the prime reasons you will never be caught.
Once you have Profound Knowledge of your processes and you are Managing by Value Stream you have taken the first step to Excellence. Value streams are the basis of excellence. It focuses you on value creation and enables you to accomplish Manufacturing Improvement:
- Stress your Assembly Line,
- Profound Knowledge of all processes,
- Create a competitive advantage,
- Build a culture of winning,
- Increase financial performance,
- Dominate your competitors,
- Full integration with suppliers,
- Constantly change towards perfection,
- Manage by Metrics, and
- Above all Constantly Eradicate Defects with an andon system.
Next, use everyone in your company for Manufacturing Improvement and march towards Perfection in a system-benefiting direction. After that, Start your journey to 6 Sigma operations.
The Toyota Production System is powerful, moreover, use it to Power your Production System to 6 Sigma.