What Sales Can Learn From Lean Manufacturing — Part 2

By Dave Brock

Mediamodifier / Pixabay

As I mentioned in my prior post, there are a lot of people promoting the application of Lean Manufacturing principles in sales. There is a lot we can learn, at the same time, there are huge areas where the comparisons break down.

If you haven’t read the first post, What We Can Learn From Lean Manufacturing, be sure to read this. This post continues on the foundation of Toyota Production System’s 4 P’s, by diving into the 14 principles. Recapping them briefly:

Philosophy as the foundation:

Principle 1: Base your management decisions on a long term philosophy, even at the expense of short-term financial goals.

The right process will produce the right results:

Principle 2: Create a continuous process flow to bring problems to the surface.

Principle 3: Use “pull” systems to avoid overproduction.

Principle 4: Level out the workload.

Principle 5: Build a culture of stopping to fix problems, to get quality right the first time.

Principle 6: Standardized tasks and processes are the foundation for continuous improvement and employee empowerment.

Principle 7: Use visual control so no problems are hidden.

Principle 8: Use only reliable, thoroughly tested technology that serves your people and processes.

Add value to the organization by developing your people.

Principle 9: Grow leaders who thoroughly understand the work, live the philosophy, and teach it to others.

Principle 10: Develop exceptional people and teams who follow your company’s philosophy.

Principle 11: Respect your extended network of partners and suppliers by challenging them and helping them improve.

Continuously solving root problems drives organizational learning.

Principle 12: Go and see for yourself to thoroughly understand the situation.

Principle 13: Make decisions slowly by consensus, thoroughly considering all options. Implement decisions rapidly.

Principle 14: Become a learning organization through relentless reflection and continuous improvement.

Principle 1: Base your management decisions on a long term philosophy, even at the expense of short term financial goals. This, as you’ve come to learn is not unique to manufacturing, it’s sound business practice. In sales and marketing, we tend, however to be driven by the opposite, we are focused on today, this week, this month, this quarter.

We constantly shift priorities, we create programs du jour, abandoning them for the next cool idea. Inevitably, this short term focus and shifts in priorities has an adverse impact on our people and customers, and ultimately the results we achieve. Both our people and customer get confused with these constant shifts. Our people never get the opportunity to master the program execution, when things are shifted and they have to start again.

For sustained performance improvement, to hit our goals year after year, to retain and grow our relationships with customers, we have to have a long term view of our own business goals and strategies, and a goal of creating customers for life. Built on this platform, we build the strategies, programs, develop/train our people, and execute our strategies. We learn and build on that platform, sharpening the capabilities of our organization and each individual.

Principle 2: Create a continuous process flow to bring problems to the surface. As you Go to the full article.

Source:: Business 2 Community

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