Lean focuses on eliminating non-value-added activities from manufacturing and/or
administrative processes while streamlining value-added activities. Itâ€™s a people-oriented
approach that empowers teams to achieve improvements.
Lean concepts emphasize waste elimination while delivering quality products at low
cost, and it revolves around customer needs and expectations.
There are three objectives in a lean environment:
- Reducing inventories
- Increasing manufacturing flexibility and flow
- Improving quality by eliminating defects
Lean methods create a continual improvement-based, waste elimination culture that
involves workers at all levels. There are a variety of lean methods, including Kaizen
rapid improvement events, 5S, value-stream mapping, cellular production and Six
What is Green?
There are many concepts and opinions as to what exactly constitutes "Green".
You may think of it in terms of the "3 Rs"- recycle, reuse, or reduce.
How can we "3R"our waste streams - liquid, solid, or gas?
Or, how can we 3R our oil, energy, and raw material (including packaging) that we use?
How are Lean and Green Related?
There are several opportunities for enhancing environmental performance through lean initiatives.
Lean typically results in less material use, less scrap, reduced water and energy
use, and decreased number and amount of chemicals used.
Lean provides an excellent platform for broadening the definition of "waste" to
include environmental risk.
Regulatory issues may be encountered when applying lean to environmentally sensitive
processes. This may result in a great opportunity through kaizen events or longer
term Six Sigma projects to make improvements.
Green and ISO
The ISO 14001:2000 approach requires the organization to take a look at all areas
where its activities have an environmental impact, and to commit to continual improvement.
Improving environmental performance encourages companies to cut costs through better
management of energy, water, waste and resources, and because the standard requires
continuous improvement, the company continues to make savings.
This may also provide increased opportunities for current and new business.
It's Not Easy Being Green!
May not be easy, but certainly worth it. We have a trained and experienced staff
that can help you implement Lean and Green. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for
Meanwhile, good luck on your Lean and Green journey!