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Get your cookies last week? Thank Lean!

Over the last week or so, you’ve probably noticed the little boxes of happiness popping up all through your office. Purple, red, orange and brown…I speak, of course, about Girl Scout cookies. Those once-a-year packages of goodness that many folks look forward to receiving after having ordered them months ago. As the father of two […]

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NEJM and Lean – something’s missing

It’s been said many times over that’s what old is new again. If’ you’ve been around for any length of time, you’ve no doubt seen this phenomenon play out in everything from fashion to toys. So, it’s with some disappointment that I have to admit that Lean is not immune to this same trend. Lately, […]

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99.9 mpg with Lean!

I don’t consider myself a hyper-miler (nor does my 5.4L V8-powered F150 SuperCrew 4×4) so imagine how excited I was when I realized that I was getting a fuel economy of 99.9 mpg! Not bad for a truck that weighs 7700 pounds unloaded! I quickly snapped a picture of my dashboard to prove to any […]

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Do you really need a spare tire?

Recently on LinkedIn, a connection of mine shared that he had taken the spare tire out of his car in an effort to increase gas mileage. His rationale (which has been proven by automakers), was that a lighter car would get better mileage. His post drew swift and divisive commentary from quite a few folks, […]

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Overcoming Lean Hesitancy with Respect for People

If you have a position that involves leading change, then at some point you’ve had to deal with people being a little hesitant. This is very true for those of us who have taken a leadership role in leading Lean, since we often are trying to influence fundamental changes to how companies operate. The ancient […]

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Lean and the Art of Garden Shed Repair

When we bought our house in 2003, it needed a lot of work. We have touched every wall, floor and ceiling at least once, and sometimes twice, as our family has grown and our needs and tastes have changed. Most of that work is done, so I’m able to turn my attention to something that’s […]

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Make a Mark; Don’t Leave One

In my 20 years in industry, I’ve had lots of bosses. LOTS. Sadly, I can count on one hand the number of those bosses who were good at their jobs, and only a select few of those actually taught me anything about being a better employee/person/leader myself (see my blog post about one of those […]

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The Best Baked Ham You’ve Ever Had!

One day, Emma watched as her mother prepared dinner. Carrots and potatoes were boiling away on the stovetop as the mother took the ham from the fridge, put it on the cutting board, cut both ends off, then put it into the pan and into the oven to bake. “Mommy”, Emma asks, “why’d you cut […]

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Reclaim control with a solid 5S program

Lean gives you options Years ago, I was the Manufacturing Manager of a medical device company here in CT. Because we were such a small place, in addition to running the manufacturing floor I was also the defacto “facilities guy”. Anything even remotely related to the building or grounds would come through my office – manufacturing related or […]

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Why You Don’t Go Hiking in November

Having grown up in rural Maine as the son of a deer hunter, November (rifle season for whitetail) was often highly anticipated. Endless amounts of preparation went into making sure everything was ready – rifles sighted in and cleaned, boots waterproofed, oil changed in the four-wheeler. Perhaps the most important preparation step was making sure […]

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The KISS Principle

In the early 1960’s, teenager Chiam Witz knew one thing: he wanted attention from girls. After trying all the usual things that boys that age do, he watched the Beatles on television. After seeing the droves of screaming girls he knew he had his answer: be in a band. After being a member of and […]

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The “New Normal” and why it’s not Lean

It was an average Tuesday and I was working as an engineer at a large Aerospace manufacturer here in Connecticut. My boss sent me an email asking me to follow up on something for him because his boss needed an answer quick, which wasn’t unusual. What was off-center was that he had taken a vacation day that […]