Lean 101 is a beginner’s introduction to lean but serves equally well as a refresher course or as a vehicle to clarify any misconceptions. Rudrey decided on three major goals for participants in its Lean 101 training module:
• To understand what lean manufacturing is, and what it is not
• To understand why lean manufacturing is being implemented
• To understand and recognize the seven forms of waste
Some associates will probably have some preconceived ideas about lean in your facility. In the Rudrey facility, as in many organizations in the first year or two of their lean implementation, opinions about lean were negative. The word “lean” itself seemed to have a negative connotation, and poor information flow within the company further contributed to perceptions that lean would cause more problems than it was worth. Management was partly to blame for this by not telling people the whys, whats, and hows of lean. Moreover, employees looked back at other major programs that had been implemented prior to lean, programs that often led to confusion, discouragement, and most importantly, layoffs.