Shop Floor Management, or the control of every productive process in a firm

There is an increasing use of terms such as Lean Leadership and Shop floor Management, in contexts where a change of mentality is needed first of all to better face the changes that the progressive automation and development of the industry in 4.0 perspective impose.

So let’s first see what these terms mean, what they mean for a company and above all why Shop Floor Management should be introduced.

Lean Leadership: meaning

As it often happens, a word may seem way more complicated than how it actually is. Let’s see now what lean leadership in a company implies. 

Lean Leadership is a agile, quick lean“, and it is the basis of corporate change; it is in fact a new vision of corporate leadership, which moves from the traditional role of “boss” to that of a guide able to share responsibilities.

In details, these are the founding principles of a “lean” leadership:
1. Challenge: choosing the objectives to be achieved;
2. Kaizen, which means believing in the strategic importance of a continuous update;
3. Gemba, or to remain connected to the operative processes in order to help the development from the base;
4. Respect, first of all, consider everyone with the same value and importance, without denigrating “l’M the last arrived”
5. Teamwork, do not put people in competition, but foster a partnership that supports at a motivational level.
Basically, it is based on the incentive to leave the classic routine to improve, in order to keep up with the times with a leader able to do so; it cannot be a manager who centralises power, but a person able to share responsibilities with the others, and give them autonomy.

Shop Floor Management: add value to the product

The shop floor management turns into the best tool to realize the new “philosophy Lean”, since its main focus is the continuous improvement of the production flow.

It is structured for all those processes that add value to the product; to promote the growth of leadership, the Shop Floor Management supports the sustainable development of these processes, where they occur, in the gemba.

The organized presence of managers in the production areas and their attention to standard deviations, ensures on the one hand fast decisions and the direct implementation of the solutions, from the other develops a continuous growth of the corporate culture and above all relies on the skills of the employees.

Why change business management through Lean Management?

  1.  Because the market, which requires increasingly frequent change, needs flexible and timely organization;
  2. To increase competitiveness. The corporate culture is not bought but developed;
  3.  To maximize objective skills instead of focusing on individualism;
  4.  Because all too often managers give a contradictory message to their collaborators: “does what I tell you, but don’t do what I do”.

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