The holy grail of Lean is developing a continuous learning and improving culture. This may seem easy in theory but it is very difficult in practice. Even though many organizations understand the benefits of continuous improvement, only a few have been able to develop and sustain such a culture.
Every day, your team is innovating on a wide range of initiatives including high level ones such as drones, AR/VR, BIM, Lean processes, reality capture, and low level improvements such as cutting waste, improving logistics, planning, etc. The lessons learned and best practices from your innovation and continuous improvement efforts are; however, rarely shared across the entire organization. Good ideas can be siloed and lost. As a result, people keep reinventing solutions for problems that have been solved by someone else in the organization. If a good solution already exists, why do you need to start from scratch?
Founded in 2017, the inspiration for The Lean Way came from co-founder, Nawras Skhmot’s experience working in the construction industry in Norway. The Lean Way is a continuous improvement software designed for the AEC industry. The Lean Way is built around sharing improvements through a standard A3 format with photos, videos, and PDFs. With The Lean Way, individuals are able to capture and share their improvements with the whole organization.
Figure 1: Improvements (courtesy of The Lean Way)
Co-founder, Doanh Do, remarked, “The Lean Way allows every employee to have access to the best practices of the entire company. People who would not otherwise talk with each other on a regular basis are able share improvements and learn from each other.”
Nawras added, “The Lean Way allows the Lean manager to be more efficient with their continuous improvement effort. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) of the organization’s improvement progress are automatically tracked and calculated including: 1) the number of improvements created, 2) the financial and time impact of those improvements, and 3) where the improvements are coming from. Rather than spending hours administering the continuous improvement program, The Lean Way gives managers the insight to make better decisions and to prioritize their time. The Lean managers know which teams are doing well and which teams need help. This allows him or her to focus on making the improvement program even better.”
Figure 2: Knowledge Feed and Analytics (courtesy of The Lean Way)
Through close collaboration with DPR Construction, The Lean Way was developed specifically to solve the problem of continuous improvement and knowledge-sharing in the construction industry. Several leading construction companies use the software to share good ideas across their company and accelerate the rate of innovation. Good ideas that were generated from one project or one office can be shared across the whole organization.
When asked what type of organizations can benefit from The Lean Way, co-founder Nawras replied, “AEC organizations of all sizes can use The Lean Way to foster a culture of change and drive more improvements quickly. Many organizations recognize that continuous improvement is vital to their long-term success, and like all other complex business processes, they need a platform to manage it. The only way to get better and improve productivity is to continuously improve and share those improvements with the people in the company who can benefit from it the most. By continuously improving, AEC professionals can deliver greater value to their clients and ultimately improve the top and bottom line.”
Wherever you are in your improvement journey, The Lean Way’s continuous improvement software will help you take it to the next level with unprecedented visibility, transparency, communication, and accountability. Building an improvement culture doesn't have to be slow and painful. The right technology not only fosters an improvement culture in all the important ways, but it also accelerates improvement in an organization.
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