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The essential question is not, "how busy are you?"

BUT "what are you are busy at?"

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In 1926, Sakichi Toyoda founded the Toyoda Automatic Loom Works. Several years later, the company changed its name to Toyota when it began producing automobiles. In 1950, Eiji Toyoda, the nephew of Sakichi, participated in a three-month visit to the Rouge plant of Ford in Dearborn, Michigan. At the time, the Dearborn facility was Ford’s most complex and largest manufacturing facility. It produced nearly 8000 cars per day while Toyota only produced 2500 cars each year. (16).png (14).png (37).png (39).png (16).png (41).png (43).png (46).png (51).png (49).png (48).png (46).png (52).png (57).png (59).png (40).png (36).png (38).png (38).png (37).png (41).png (41).png (50).png (51).png (53).png (49).png (55).png (60).png (44).png (54).png (47).png (58).png (56).png (56).png (47).png

Applying the Principles

The five Lean principles provide a framework for creating an efficient and effective organization. Lean allows managers to discover inefficiencies in their organization and deliver better value to customers. The principles encourage creating better flow in work processes and developing a continuous improvement culture. By practicing all 5 principles, an organization can remain competitive, increase the value delivered to the customers, decrease the cost of doing business, and increase their profitability.

Water Sprinkler


Harvey MaKay



In order to improve efficiency, effectiveness, and profitability, focus relentlessly on eliminating all aspects of the manufacturing process that add no value from your customer’s perspective.The core idea of lean business management is actually quite simple…relentlessly work on eliminating waste from the business process.

So, what is waste? It can take many forms, but the basic idea is to eliminate anything and everything that does not add value from the perspective of your customer.

Another way to look at Lean business management is as a collection of tools, and techniques that have been proven effective for driving waste out of the business process.

Lean thinking aims to remove such wastes and reduce overall costs from work processes. 

Here at DISTANT CORNER DESIGNS we will delve closely at the 8 Waste elements listed below, MAP all the processes and key functions in all areas of your business and tackle any obstacles that create weight and unnecessary cost to your firm.

Motherboard Installation


Waste from a product or service failure to meet customer expectations

Business Team



Waste due to under-utilization of people's talents, skills and knowledge

Worker Lifting Cardboard Box


Wastes resulting from excess products and materials that aren't processed

Boxes in a Truck


Wasted time, resources, and costs when unnecessarily moving products and materials

Warehouse Shelves



Waste from making more product than customers demand

Businessmen in Motion


Wasted time and effort related to unnecessary movements by people

Gear System



Wastes related to more work or higher quality than is required

Digital Chronometer


Waste from time spent waiting for the next process step to occur



DISTANT CORNER DESIGNS utilize very extensive collection of Lean business management tools and concepts to streamline business flow and cost either it be in the office, production or manufacturing - DISTANT CORNER DESIGNS have all the right tools for the job. 


Many of the tools can be successfully used separately, which makes it much easier to get started in KEY areas needing attention. On the other hand, the benefits will compound as more tools are used, as they do support and reinforce each other which in turn give a much greater reward and control.

Below is a brief description and short explanation of how each tool can improve your business operations.


  1. Are aligned with top-level strategic goals (thus helping to achieve those goals)

  2. Are effective at exposing and quantifying waste (OEE is a good example)

  3. Are readily influenced by plant floor employees (so they can drive results) 

  1. Plan (develop a hypothesis)

  2. Do (run experiment)

  3. Check (evaluate results)

  4. Act (refine your experiment; try again)


A company can seize

extra-ordinary opportunities

only if it is very good at the

ordinary operations

Marcel Telles



By improving your business processes, in the office, production and manufacturing  -

a Lean mindset can help you foster innovation and embrace change.

But first, companies must be willing to evolve their culture for lasting change. “Lean thinking calls for a different kind of leadership—one that champions experimentation, challenges the status quo, and allows the brilliance within their teams to shine.”

When innovation moves faster than production, Lean tools can help you establish a culture of accountability and structure in a simple, manageable way.

Lean approaches to leadership and culture are helping manufacturers survive and adapt to their new fast-paced, tech-enabled reality.

Are you ready to embrace change, achieve agility at scale and reduce unnecessary MONEY loss.

If so

Contact us and let us assist in getting your business running to its full potential and rid unwanted business operation drag.




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Many a times we have walked through various businesses, irrespective of size, office, factory, corporate sector and field - do we see over complex and over exerted systems, poor time management, lengthy processes, chaotic production layout, redundant work ideals and WASTE - A lot of it.

All this means is that you are losing MONEY, MONEY and yes of course MONEY.

Here at DISTANT CORNER DESIGNS we implement the globally popular and used Lean business management system.

By incorporating all our Tools and Methods, we can educate improved practice, streamline business flow, eliminate waste, reduce unnecessary cost to company, create continuous improvements and much, much more.

But first lets get to know what is Lean management?

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The primary purpose of Lean management is

to produce value for the customer through the optimization of resources and create a steady workflow based on real customer demands. ... Lean management focuses on: Defining value from the standpoint of the end customer. Eliminating all waste in the business processes.

Lean is the concept of efficient manufacturing/operations that grew out of the Toyota Production System in the middle of the 20th century. It is based on the philosophy of defining value from the customer’s viewpoint, and continually improving the way in which value is delivered, by eliminating every use of resources that is wasteful, or that does not contribute to the value goal. Lean is centered on preserving value with less work; with the ultimate goal of providing perfect value to the customer through a perfect value creation process that has zero waste. This is done by empowering every individual worker to achieve his or her full potential, and so to make the greatest possible contribution.

The goal of empowerment is based on the idea of showing respect for people. Respect for people extends beyond just the end customer and can include the workers, suppliers, and society. For the end customer, Lean strives to maximize value delivery while minimizing waste in the process. Lean aims to maximize human potential by empowering workers to continuously improve their work. Lean leaders facilitate this goal through problem-solving training. They help workers grow professionally and personally, allowing them to take pride in their work.

At the heart of the Lean philosophy is the concept of “Kaizen” or continuous improvement. The goal of continuous improvement is to eliminate all waste in the value delivery process. To do this, Lean leaders must go where value is created – commonly known as the gemba. At gemba, they often spend their time coaching and developing their people.

They encourage workers to actively identify problems and look for opportunities for improvement.

After studying Ford’s production system, Eiji Toyoda understood that the mass production system employed by Ford cannot be used by Toyota. The Japanese market was too small and diverse for mass production. The customer’s requirements ranged from compact cars to the most luxurious vehicles. Ford’s mass-production system focused on the amount of production instead of the customer’s voice. Toyota collaborated with Taiichi Ohno to develop a new means of production. They concluded that through right-sizing machines for the actual required volume and introducing self-monitoring machines, they can make products faster, lower in cost, higher in quality, and most importantly higher in variety! Ohno faced the challenge of trading off between productivity and quality. His experiments led to developing several novel ideas that became known as the ‘Toyota Production System’.

In order to understand the history of Lean, we must go back to the start of modern manufacturing. Henry Ford was the first to truly integrate a production system called ‘mass-production’, which manufactures large quantities of standardized products. Ford created what he called a flow production, which involves continuous movement of elements through the production process. Ford used mass production to fabricate and assemble the components of his vehicles within a few minutes rather than hours or days. Unlike craft production, the mass production system delivered perfectly fitted components that are interchangeable. This process was very successful and allowed the Ford Motor Company to produce over 15 million Model T cars between 1908 and 1927. During World War II, the US military adopted Ford’s mass production system.


When solving problems

Dig at the roots

Instead of hacking at the leaves

The Toyota Production System


The Toyota Production System (TPS) was established based on two concepts: The first is called "Jidoka" (can loosely be translated as "automation with a human touch") which means that when a problem occurs, the equipment stops immediately, preventing defective products from being produced. The second is the concept of "Just-in-Time," in which each process produces only what is needed by the next process in a continuous flow.

With Jidoka, the equipment stops when a problem arises. This allows a single worker to visually monitor and efficiently control many machines. As problems arose, the workers must solve them right away otherwise the whole production line stops. This brings problems to the surface and promotes identifying and resolving problems at their root causes.

The idea behind “Just-in-Time” is simple - make only “what is needed, when it is needed, and in the amount needed”. Using Just-in-Time, Toyota is able to produce high quality products efficiently through the elimination of waste. Based on the basic philosophies of Jidoka and Just-in-Time, the TPS can efficiently and quickly produce products of sound quality, one at a time, that fully satisfy customer requirements.


The man who will use his skill and constructive imagination to see how much he can give for a dollar, instead of how little he can give for a dollar


Henry Ford




 LEAN Principles 


Lean was born out of MANUFACTURING PRACTICES but in recent time has transformed the world of knowledge work and management. It encourages the practice of continuous improvement and is based on the fundamental idea of respect for people. Womack and Jones defined the five principles of Lean manufacturing in their book “The Machine That Changed the World”. The five principles are considered a recipe for improving workplace efficiency and include: 1) defining value, 2) mapping the value stream, 3) creating flow, 4) using a pull system, and 5) pursuing perfection. The next sections provides a detailed overview of each principle.


1. Define Value

To better understand the first principle of defining customer value, it is important to understand what value is. Value is what the customer is willing to pay for. It is paramount to discover the actual or latent needs of the customer. Sometimes customers may not know what they want or are unable to articulate it. This is especially common when it comes to novel products or technologies. There are many techniques such as interviews, surveys, demographic information, and web analytics that can help you decipher and discover what customers find valuable. By using these qualitative and quantitative techniques you can uncover what customers want, how they want the product or service to be delivered, and the price that they afford.

2. Map the Value Stream

The second Lean principle is identifying and mapping the value stream. In this step, the goal is to use the customer’s value as a reference point and identify all the activities that contribute to these values. Activities that do not add value to the end customer are considered waste. The waste can be broken into two categories: non-valued added but necessary and non-value & unnecessary. The later is pure waste and should be eliminated while the former should be reduced as much as possible. By reducing and eliminating unnecessary processes or steps, you can ensure that customers are getting exactly what they want while at the same time reducing the cost of producing that product or service.

3. Create Flow

After removing the wastes from the value stream, the following action is to ensure that the flow of the remaining steps run smoothly without interruptions or delays. Some strategies for ensuring that value-adding activities flow smoothly include: breaking down steps, reconfiguring the production steps, leveling out the workload, creating cross-functional departments, and training employees to be multi-skilled and adaptive

4. Establish Pull

Inventory is considered one of the biggest wastes in any production system. The goal of a pull-based system is to limit inventory and work in process (WIP) items while ensuring that the requisite materials and information are available for a smooth flow of work. In other words, a pull-based system allows for Just-in-time delivery and manufacturing where products are created at the time that they are needed and in just the quantities needed. Pull-based systems are always created from the needs of the end customers. By following the value stream and working backwards through the production system, you can ensure that the products produced will be able to satisfy the needs of customers.

5. Pursue Perfection

Wastes are prevented through the achievement of the first four steps: 1) identifying value, 2) mapping value stream, 3) creating flow, and 4) adopting a pull system. However, the fifth step of pursuing perfection is the most important among them all. It makes Lean thinking and continuous process improvement a part of the organizational culture. Every employee should strive towards perfection while delivering products based on the customer needs. The company should be a learning organization and always find ways to get a little better each and every day.

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