“Learning is the strategy“ is the succinct summary by Prof. Daniel T. Jones who as co-author of the global bestseller “The machine that changed the world” just over 25 years ago played a pivotal part in paving the way for Lean Management in Germany. “The goal must be to learn faster than the competition”, Jones continued his presentation, thus putting employees at the center right at the start of Europe’s largest Lean Management congress. “The objective of Lean Management today is the creation of learning organizations that allow companies to react speedily to changes”: this is how Wilhelm Goschy, Staufen AG Executive Board Member, defined the objective of Lean Leadership, when he took his audience on a journey through time entitled “Lean yesterday, today and tomorrow”, on the basis of the Staufen study on “25 years of Lean Management”. Johann Soder, Technical Director of SEW-EURODRIVE gearbox manufacturer then outlined how Future 4.0 might look for individual employees in industrial companies. It is Soder’s firm conviction that technology will develop from “an instrument by to a partner for humans”. However, the human-robot cooperation as anticipated by him will not work by itself. “Companies have a duty to develop their staff”, is his urgent appeal. This fell onto fertile ground with the participants of the BestPractice Day. In a survey of the audience, they confirmed the important role of executives. Frank Krause, Director of Skills Development at Staufen and moderator of this year’s conference, also emphasized how important it is for executives and companies “to scrutinize themselves and their actions on a regular basis”. Critical analyses and provocative assertions on the topics of Industry 4.0 and Lean Leadership will undoubtedly also dominate the BestPractice Day 2017 which will open its doors again in Darmstadt on July 4 and 5.
About the study of “25 years of Lean Management”
Scientific support for the study was provided by Prof. Dr.-Ing. Joachim Metternich of the TU Darmstadt Institute of Production Management, Technology and Machine Tools (PTW). The starting point of the investigation was the book “The Machine that Changed the World”, which, 25 years ago, had originally prompted the international breakthrough of Lean Management. “There had been numerous attempts long before the 1990s to make industrial work more efficient and more effective. However, only the seminal publication by James P. Womack, Daniel T. Jones and Daniel Roos gave rise to a management culture that is justified in its claim to have caused a lasting change in the patterns of thinking in factory halls,” Staufen Executive Board Member Goschy explains. “For that reason, I am particularly delighted to be able to welcome Daniel T. Jones, one of its authors, as one of the speakers at our “BestPractice Day 2016” Lean congress in July.” Press release (.pdf) Press release (.rtf)