IAM Talking: Lean Everywhere - small i to BIG I Innovation with Ken Shropshire

IAM Talking: Lean Everywhere - small i to BIG I Innovation with Ken Shropshire

Welcome to IAM Talking, a periodic podcast interview series, with your host, Dan Keldsen, Chief Engagement Officer at Information Architected.

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Today IAM Talking Lean Everywhere - small i to BIG I Innovation with Ken Shropshire, Director of Continuous Improvement from AstraZeneca.
Lean Powers, Activate!

Ken and i also met each other once i was involved in an innovation challenge engagement in early 2012, and Ken was leading part of the charge in going for a Lean look at innovation opportunities internally.

Just for this interview we swept up roughly Six months as soon as the first wave of innovation challenges had closed out. Area of the staging of innovation challenges we handled, were specifically targeted employing a set of Lean lenses, namely, the �7 Wastes of Lean� - placed on both flow, in this instance, process/information flow, and in individual or organizational behavior. The 7 Wastes are: Defects, Overproduction, Inventory, Extra Processing, Motion, Transportation, and Waiting.

Should you aren�t familiar with Lean, the standard view, and good reputation for Lean, originates from the manufacturing world, and also the primary flag waver of Toyota along with their Toyota Production System. It�s a large toolkit that is certainly over Sixty years old, and is constantly expand beyond manufacturing, into many parts of business life.
Focusing Innovation through Lean

Perusing a �Lean lens� at these types of waste in a business, you are able to take away the obstacles that cost your company over time, money and effort, that ultimately impact your time and effort to market, your customer happiness (shipping defective products, for instance), employee engagement (if they�re overburdened with work that they'll see just isn't useful, but that�s demanded by management or regulators for example), etc..

Within our case, each of us were family interaction to �think outside the box� for AstraZeneca, exactly who don�t realize, for innovation work, is developing a completely blank slate for innovation, more often paralyzes your employees, pc will free the crooks to go and �innovate.�

In your come together, we did a wide variety of interviews with employees in a range of roles, then one from the filters we ran those interviews through, were in identifying where we could TARGET specific innovation challenges, utilizing the 7 wastes to identify those opportunities that could be easy wins, to obtain engagement and involvement, and that also were mentioned repeatedly, especially across roles and departments, which helps create extended team opportunities.
As an example�

If we have a look at �overproduction� as among the 7 wastes, plus a behavioral twist, that could result in issues like:

- Micromanagement
- Many procedures
- Transactional focus
- and Destructive Politics

Which sounds as being similar to �business as usual� for large companies� apart from through the use of specific examples, and the language of Lean, we were capable of carve out targeted, �judgement neutral� areas to engage real employees, down and up the org chart, to own as much as issues and co-create fixes. From an engagement (as with �employee engagement�) standpoint, it worked well to aid focus their efforts.
The Double-edged Sword of Tenure

While this engagement, if we used to do employee interviews, we bumped into employees who had been there for 3 decades or higher. In lots of ways, it�s super easy for long-term employees for being section of the problem from a lean perspective. They�ve experienced it way too long, it can be hard to see the wastes of lean, and think constant improvement/innovation, but many of those employees seemed to really embody good both long-term employees AND constant innovators. Their input developed into invaluable however, because they was around of sufficient length as a way to indicate long-standing issues, but not need to lead to solving them.

Much more - but please take a listen to this interview, and you may learn more about how we approached this work, and where you could encounter potholes and ripe employee engagement areas.
Comments or Questions?

Wondering the best way to apply Lean for your project? Do you need similar techniques as part of your company, whether in manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, or other industry? (Note: Absolutely!)

Are you wondering how to apply the 7 Wastes of Lean to your business or IT project?

Comment below in case you have inquiries we can easily answer publicly, and we�ll answer and discuss together, or contact us at 617-933-9655 to speak about assembling your shed and the way we could help, from initial assessment through implementation and sustainability almost daily, money and resources spent.

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