Like sharks, organizations must keep moving forward or they sink like stones. The best way to keep moving is to pore over existing practices and find ways to execute them better.
That, in a nutshell, explains the popularity of lean manufacturing and other formalized approaches to continuous improvement. Formalized programs to re-examine existing practices have become mainstream in food and beverage organizations.
Lean implies a lack of fat, and the elimination of fat, or waste, underpins most continuous improvement efforts. But waste reduction isn’t the only goal pursued. Injury reductions, supply chain efficiencies and other objectives drive many of today’s initiatives. The common thread is the formal structure these methods provide. Consider them an interactive version of the company suggestion box.