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Lean Supply Chain! Looking for Recommendations, Tips and Resources

E

ekonom

#1
Hi!

I have been invited to a prepare a lecture (about 2 hours) on how to integrate suppliers into a company's lean work, or rather, how should a material and information flow between suppliers and manufacturing companies should look like, how to built up it, manage it and develop it?

During the lecture the following topics should be covered:

• What methods/strategies exist to build a material and information flow between suppliers and manufacturing companies (e.g. Kanban, PFEP (Plan for Every Part), or similar).
• What role does the purchasing department and buyers have in a lean business, especially if the purchasing function is place on different location and not on the actual location where manufacturing takes place?
• Examples of companies that have done this successfully and how they did it...

Audience is a network for production managers / directors from various manufacturing companies’ small, medium and large businesses. During these network meetings the participants discuss various themes around the Lean Enterprise, from different perspectives and angles. Sometimes an external lecturer is invited to the network meetings to speak on a specific theme around Lean. Theme of the next meeting (mentioned above) is “how to integrate suppliers into a company's lean work” that I am invited to talk about.

Are there any of you who have material / tips recommendation (e.g. helped / will help any business, or working in a business that already done so) of the above theme and who could share it with us. I am familiar with Lean, but need tips / suggestions on how to outline such event (ca 2 hours): what should be addressed and in what extent.

PS: The participants are in some ways and levels familiar with Lean Philosophy

Thanks in advance
 
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Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
#2
First, let me say that two hours seems awfully long for a monologue lecture on this topic. As much of a blabbermouth as I am, I rarely have a presentation where I speak for more than an hour at a stretch without having audience participation.

Have you been to one of these meetings? Does the invited speaker actually speak for two hours straight?

Depending on the size of the audience, I would suggest treating this opportunity more like a seminar than a speech and including some group activity to help illustrate some of your points.

For example, you might find a way to split the audience into groups to work on a supply chain model to experience for themselves the factors that affect a supply chain. One model which springs to mind (after a night of pizza and beer) is the Beer Game, a respected supply chain model.

The speaker (you) would give an overview of supply chain factors, then introduce the game (or similar activity) which would run for a relatively short period (enough to frustrate, but not bore, the participants), then wrap up with a summary of "lessons learned" and some "tips and tricks" to alleviate some of the worst problems and strategies to deploy when glitches occur (due to events beyond the supply chain coordinator's control - tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, droughts, union strikes, political uprisings and revolutions, etc. etc.)

Sounds like fun. I hope you have sufficient time to prepare and assemble materials. Please, please, whatever you do, NEVER just throw a bunch of PowerPoint slides on the screen and then just read them to your audience - a surefire way to never be asked to present again!
 

Jen Kirley

Quality and Auditing Expert
Staff member
Admin
#3
Two hours is a gift - usually we only get one. That second hour can be used for small groups to form and do exercises that reinforce the learning. That's the point where the learning sticks.
 

Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
#4
Two hours is a gift - usually we only get one. That second hour can be used for small groups to form and do exercises that reinforce the learning. That's the point where the learning sticks.
I've found by experience that it's better to sandwich the activity between the "master presenter's" comments. That way the presenter gets to reinforce by repetition the lessons learned in the exercises. Also, it's the opportunity to raise questions for the audience and receive a "call to action" from the presenter. Best time to distribute handouts is AFTER the presentation to keep folks from looking at handout instead of presenter (exception is group activity materials - only distributed just before use.)

Over the years, I've picked up quite a few tips on the factors which make a successful presentation - everything from audience seating configuration to lighting to screen placement for a PowerPoint projector. Paramount is making it easy for the audience (HVAC in working order, good sound system for larger audiences, plenty of room to come and go to the bathroom or leave to take/make phone calls without disrupting the session, comfortable seats, good sight lines to maintain eye contact [no backs from round banquet tables], "bio breaks," no servers or busboys distracting the audience, willingness to stop midstream to answer audience questions, etc., etc.)
 
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