Learn to lead with lean by developing people: In a world in which innovation is the name of the game and competition gets fiercer by the day, lean management has become the go-to methodology for organizations committed to providing greater value for their customers. Sadly, the vast majority of lean transformations fail – and more often than not the reason behind this is to be found in a common misinterpretation of what lean actually is.
Over the past 25 years, our understanding of lean thinking – a management philosophy inspired by Japanese carmaker Toyota – has changed beyond recognition. From a set of tools and techniques, this unique approach has come to be seen as a system for learning that, if adopted as a business strategy, has the power to transform any organization.
Too many business executives still see lean thinking as a set of tools, a “program” that employees are force-fed, or a magic solution to all problems – failing to see that business transformation and leadership transformation are inextricably linked. The only way to succeed is, indeed, to lead with lean.
This book will take you through the evolution of lean thinking and practice, as seen through the eyes of one of the Lean Community’s leading experts – Michael Ballé. By collecting some of Michael’s best papers – many of which were written with lean gurus like Dan Jones, Jeff Liker and Art Smalley – Lead with Lean will strengthen your understanding of the methodology and encourage you to take it on (if you haven’t already).
Michael’s unique writing style has the power to inform, inspire, and challenge the reader by providing engaging practical examples that are used to convey deep reflections and lessons learned. This is clearly reflected in the stories of lean transformations contained in the book, which were observed and documented by Michael himself at the “gemba” (Japanese for “the place where the work takes place”).
Michael Balle, Roberto Priolo, Daniel Jones
7 September 2017