GO TO THE GEMBA: To get started, form a study group and plan to 1) read together The Gold Mine chapter by chapter, 2) watch the chapter lesson, 3) go to a real place to practice right away - or the other way around!
PROFIT IS KING, BUT CASH RULES: What story you tell yourselves: what is our purpose? What explains our success? How are conditions changing? What obstacles do we face, and try to formulate your business challenges.
GOLD IN THE FLOW: As a team, walk the process backwards from the point closest to the customer and look for blockages in the flow of value: rework and batches. Then imagine the flow if all went smoothly, one job at a time.
TAKT TIME: Calculate your takt time, even in the roughest way, by guesstimating daily customer demand and dividing available time by customer demand, to get a sense of the rhythm of consumption of your work.
STANDARDIZE WORK: As a team, draw an imaginary circle around where work is being done (with the people's permission), look for the fluidity and confidence in which the work is done, and obstacles in their way.
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE PEOPLE: Look at each person at work and ask yourselves: How are they organized? Which team are they part of? Who is the team leader they orient to? Which path should they follow to succeed here?
LEVEL TO PULL: Find two connected cells where you can try a rough and ready pull, by letting the supplier cell own its stock and asking the customer cell to level its demand and come and pull at need, and see what happens.
KANBAN RULES: Then learn to work with Kanban cards to materialize information, both as checks to withdraw finished jobs, and as work orders within the cell, to reproduce what has been taken, in the same order.
THE HEIJUNKA WAY: As a study team, practice thinking about your thinking: Why do we batch work? Is it smart? Aren't we constantly firefighting the effects of overburdening the people? Can we reason differently?