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How wasteful is your business?

Business Process Management

Is your business wasteful?

Ideally, every business owner would be able to say no, but in reality, most businesses are more wasteful than anyone realizes. Waste is defined as anything within your business or processes that doesn’t add value to the customer or the long-term goals of the organization. Waste is found in every industry, and at every level of production. This means there are most likely wasteful areas in your business that could be refined and reduced.

Taichi Ohno, the father of the Toyota Production System, identified 7 types of lean waste in the manufacturing process. By identifying these areas and focusing on improving them, Toyota has seen great success in “efficiently and quickly producing vehicles of sound quality, one at a time, that fully satisfy customer requirements.”

Building on this, Six Sigma identified an additional area of waste, and introduced the idea that these 8 types of waste are common in every business, not just those that primarily deal in manufacturing. Many business owners have experienced increases in productivity, profitability, and overall satisfaction, as well as a reduction in costs, by identifying these areas and taking steps to reduce waste.

Following are the 8 types of waste, which are arranged in order to create the easy to remember acronym DOWNTIME:

This blog series on the 8 types of waste will cover each of the most common types of waste in depth, including what causes waste, what to look for in your business, and how to reduce or eliminate the waste. Some of the solutions offered are easy to implement, while others require consistent and mindful effort over a period of time. When choosing which solutions to apply, remember: In order to ensure maximum success, it is important to take a multi-faceted approach to reducing waste, and commit to achieving results.

Click to read the first post in the series: The Waste of Defects

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