In an open hearted conversation with the students of TAPMI, Mr. Narayan Hegde told them that education is just an enabler for them to get into some assignments. Down the line they must constantly ask what touches their heart. Thereafter, he shared his experiences in lean management, the strategic approaches to it, its advantages and disadvantages. He said that lean management is not just about operations, but about how process inputs can be made cleaner and more efficient by removing redundant steps. It is all about how efficient one can get and add value to the customer.
As a system, lean management involves first convincing people, then looking into the process and then looking into the technology- which acts as an enabler. The second component involves ensuring that the change is going to bring about an improvement in quality. This is followed by structured management which ultimately leads to waste elimination.
Moving ahead, he shared the strategic approaches to lean management. These include having a participative culture, following an 80-20 method, value stream mapping and Kaizen model training. It also involves value stream based accountability, interactive communication, leadership coaching and a positive environment. Finally, it must have, a data driven metric oriented approach of measurement and performance reviews.
The benefits of using lean management are plenty. It helps staying relevant to business dynamics in the VUCA world, reduces costs and increases profits and improves effectiveness. It also helps enhance productivity and efficiency be removing redundant processes and leads to improved quality via more effective process controls. The risks, on the other hand, involve resistance to change, especially for middle management streams, fear of job loss and fear of failure.
Before sharing his experiences in various domains, he shared a few myths about lean management. These involved the fact that it is considered only as a manufacturing process, is expensive, stressful and leads to job losses. While the last is partially true, workers can be trained and re-skilled to minimize this.