Deliciously Lean – A Mouth-Watering Introduction
to Lean Manufacturing for Printing Professionals
and Sandwich Makers Alike
By: Bill Hanover, CCO TPS – ThroughPut Solutions
M A N A G E M E N T
Drum roll, please…Introducing Lean
Manufacturing — now appearing at the
local sandwich shop and specialty graphics
enterprise near you!
Actually, you’ve already seen countless
examples of Lean in your everyday life,
but may not have noticed. It’s literally
everywhere you go: The drive-thru
window at your favorite burger joint, the
self-checkout lines in the supermarket,
automated or online bill payment and the
list goes on and on.
Okay, so maybe you don’t think of
these as examples of Lean Manufacturing.
But allow me to show you how your local
sandwich shop uses Lean principles, and how
they can teach you much of what you need
to know about applying Lean techniques in
your company. And it really doesn’t matter if
you are making cars or pizzas, or printing on
t-shirts, posters or billboards. Lean principles
work wherever you apply them.
Before we get in line at the local Subway
for a sandwich, let’s consider a couple of the
most basic tenants of Lean Manufacturing.
A. Companies exist to make money.
B. Lean Manufacturing is all about
the elimination of waste and
improvement of processes so that (A)
There it is; as straight-up as I know
how to say it. Just as you and I trade
our time and efforts for an honest day’s
pay, companies must also make money
or they cease to exist. Of course, most
companies also have nobler reasons for
being in business like providing jobs and
opportunities, improving society, helping
the less fortunate, etc. One could easily
argue these motives ultimately inspire and
energize people far more than profi t goals.
Lean’s main goal is to make sure companies
continue to make money no matter if
markets change or products revolutionize
(VCR replaced by DVD or 35 mm fi lm
replaced by digital imaging). Applying Lean
tools and ingenuity is u