Making value stream mapping a success: "Mind and Hand"

I see too often wasteful "lean" efforts focused on mapping value streams that would not be followed by actual implementation. They are used to decorate conference rooms, to fill Powerpoint presentations and to feature videos. 

It is absolutely necessary to know your current and target condition to define what actions we should take as part of the Plan-Do-Check-Act but with mapping we haven't accomplish anything yet. 

Last weekend, Dean Schmittlein "revealed" the secret of success of MIT as organization to create value: relentless application of its "mind and hand" principle which appears in MIT's logo. Here some data on MIT's "mind and hand" principle in action:
"Mens et Manus"
Companies found by living MIT alumni employ 3.3. million people and generate world revenues of  $2 trillion, "producing the equivalent of the 11th-largest economy in the world."
Thomas A. Edison who was well known for practicing the "mind and hand" principle once said "The salvation of America lies in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology". And, it is not by accident that James Womack and other scientists re-discovered "lean thinking" while working in MIT's International Motor Vehicle Program.

While "mind and hand" really is not a secret,  it is one of these key principles for success for any lean transformation. It is the same "learning by doing" principle used by Toyota and other lean organizations to describe the active approach to develop people. Even before Toyota, the Training Within Industry (TWI) program and definitely Deming's PDCA style for training programs used the same principle.

Next time that someone shows you a value stream map as the "mind and hand" question: "can we go and see what you are doing to reach your target condition?"

1 comment:

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