Select Page

Many businessmen may have heard of the term “lean” in relation to a business but be unaware of precisely what it means. The term was coined in the 1990’s by Jim Womack & Dan Jones who led a research team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology using the term to describe the business of Toyota. Put simply, lean means creating more value for customers while using minimal resources, and with zero waste.

Many people think that lean transformation, which is the process of changing the way a business operates so that it becomes lean, applies only to manufacturing industry, but this is not true. It can apply to any business and every business. It is not just an overheads reduction process but is a way of thinking and operating for a whole organisation. A business that is operating at maximum efficiency without waste is by definition lean.

Womack and his UK opposite number Dan Jones wrote the book Lean Thinking. While there are other books on the subject, this book should be on the reading-list of anyone planning a lean transformation. It describes the thought processes that forms the basis for any and all actions underpinning lean techniques.

It is a fact that most businesses have processes which are nowhere near as efficient as they could be. This is because many processes have developed over time. For new, ground-breaking products and services, process efficiency is often not the first consideration – margins are high and getting the project to market, almost at any cost, is the primary objective. Subsequently, the focus oftentimes shifts to improving and sustaining service stability and quality – efforts to increase efficiency frequently are met with scepticism as they appear to increase risks. Further on, unique skills are required to keep profits profitable in the face of eroding margins and to differentiate your offering by providing superior speed and flexibility. These kind of skills – and the lean thinking to support it – need to be learned and practise to by managers, supervisors and their teams to build a lean enterprise.

One common problem in companies new to Lean is that certain processes get optimise, but not the entire value stream. One process may operate at greater efficiency, but it may have a bad effect on another part of the system. This results in an operation which cannot possibly be lean, because the processes are not joined up.

Supervisor Academy can help any business fix performance problems in processes and people with its’ cutting-edge leadership skills training and performance coaching. Experienced, high-performance trainers and coaches will accompany your team as your transform your supervisor and management skills, allowing the business to accelerate improvement and create leaner processes faster, thus giving you a competitive edge and growing your profit margins.

About the Company:

Supervisor Academy operates a series of unique training and coaching programmes that are designed to ensure that a company’s managers and supervisors always operate at maximum potential, and thus supporting successful lean transformations within the business. For further information call 0771 479 480 7 or e-mail

Supervisor Academy

87 St Andrews Road