Going Lean: How the Best Companies Apply Lean Manufacturing Principles to Shatter Uncertainty, Drive Innovation, and Maximize Profits

By Stephen A. Ruffa | Go to book overview

Six
From Supply Chains
to Value Streams

The great challenge for Americans is to overcome
their ‘every firm for itselfߣ individualism in which each
organization along the value stream optimizes its
own stretch while suboptimizing the whole.
-James P. Womack and Daniel T. Jones1

PERHAPS THE MOST SUBSTANTIAL impact from uncertainty and change comes from the supply chain. Henry Ford clearly recognized this; he went to great pains to control it. Others since him have struggled with it. Still, after nearly a century of dealing with it, the supply chain remains one of the greatest challenges in business management.

Its answer, however, comes not in addressing those issues where most businesses have come to focus. It cannot be solved by reducing the tremendous distance that often separates a supply chainߣs parts. Nor is the answer simply slashing a firmߣs number of suppliers, or making in­; ventories move faster.

Instead, the greatest challenge lies in this concept itself.

What, then, is a supply chain? It is typically defined as a firmߣs ex­; tended enterprise-its chain of suppliers that provide the raw mate­; rials, parts, and components that progressively advance in complete­; ness to become end products and services. For many, however, it is just what the term itself implies: a chain of supplies-a series of inventories that permit suppliers to buffer their interactions with others along the

-102-

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Going Lean: How the Best Companies Apply Lean Manufacturing Principles to Shatter Uncertainty, Drive Innovation, and Maximize Profits
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Table of Contents v
  • Permissions vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Going Lean xiii
  • Introduction - Solving the Mystery of Success 1
  • Part I - From Crisis to Excellence 9
  • One - Awash in Chaos! 11
  • Two - Shattering the Illusion of Stability 29
  • Three - Creating a Roadmap for Change 46
  • Four - A New System of Management 64
  • Part II - The Foundational Elements 79
  • Five - Leading through Measurement 81
  • Six - From Supply Chains to Value Streams 102
  • Seven - Leveling Process Variation 123
  • Eight - To Push or to Pull? 145
  • Part III - Implementing Lean Dynamics 163
  • Nine - A Plan for Action 165
  • Ten - Structuring the Transformation 182
  • Eleven - Making Lean Dynamics Succeed 196
  • Twelve - Conquering the Crisis 205
  • Appendix - Constructing the Value Curve 213
  • Glossary 219
  • Notes 227
  • Index 257
  • About the Author 265
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