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7 - Sustaining the improvement drive

Elsevier Ltd
DOI: 10.1016/b978-075065857-7/50010-x


Publisher Summary Each stage of the Lean total productive maintenance (TPM) journey includes an element of sustainability—like a ratchet system—whereby gains are secured before moving on to the next stage. The development of a sustainable business-improvement model is important if gains are to be recovered over the longer term and the workforce are to feel that additional and self-directed improvements are legitimate without being asked or directed toward areas of improvement. The issue of sustaining improvement activities lies at the heart of every manufacturing firm, and this difficult task has two dimensions. The top-down dimension concerns the processes and techniques that can be used at the management level. This is the most fundamental level of sustainability. All world-class manufacturing businesses have a team of committed managers who share a common vision of the future. These organizations know that collaboration with other managers is preferable to conflict. These individuals in the factory control large parts of the manufacturing system and the total supply chain, and these individuals occupy positions in the business whereby their decisions can change and optimize the total flow of materials throughout the value stream. Generally, this level of commercial improvement cannot be achieved by operational teams even if they were to offer hundreds of improvement ideas. However, the sustainability picture is neither complete nor effective unless the changes and vision of managers are transferred or deployed to the operational teams that make the value streams of the firm.

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