Understanding Lean – What is Lean Manufacturing and How Do I Use It?

Let’s Talk About Lean.

“Lean? What the heck is that?” you’re probably asking. Yeah, I get it. When my husband first suggested I get into lean manufacturing, I had a similar response, because I neither cared nor understood what it was. But once I began to research it, I thought, wow, I can do this. And not only could I do it in the workplace, I realized that anything in my life could be organized through this process. So, once I began applying it to my home, my cleaning and organizing have gone much more smoothly than they ever have before. Unfortunately, the more I got involved with lean, the more I realized that very few people understand or even know what it is. To me, that is really a shame. If it can transform companies into efficient, multi-million dollar businesses, than why can’t it transform your home into organized, well-managed havens? So that is why I have chosen to start this blog… to help beautiful individuals such as yourselves become more orderly in your everyday lives. It just takes a little understanding and practice.

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So then, let’s get to the bottom of lean thinking. If someone were to ask me what lean manufacturing was, I would say:

A method of cutting out unnecessary waste to improve efficiency.

Lean = cutting waste.

What does this mean? Well, companies often hire people who are specialized in lean manufacturing to find problems with a specific process or job and figure out solutions to those problems. The process or job then becomes not only easier to do, but also more efficient and time manageable. Applying this same method to our homes would make our chores more enjoyable and less of a hassle. Basically, by using lean, we would have easier lives. Sounds great, right? Yeah, but since we aren’t CEO’s of a big company, and probably can’t afford to hire a professional to come in and cut waste for us, we need to learn by ourselves how to apply this lean thinking to our every day lives.

Since you now know that lean means cutting waste, you might be thinking, “Oh I know! Lean is like minimalism!” Well… no, not exactly. Sure, minimalism is a form of lean because it is removing unnecessary items from our homes, but lean can go much, much further than just plain minimalism.

For example:

It usually takes you a half an hour to clean the kitchen. Not only is cleaning the kitchen your least favorite chore, but you need to make sure to put aside thirty minutes of your time to clean. However, that thirty minutes is time wasted to you because you could be doing other, more important things such as playing with your kids, spending time doing a hobby, or going on a walk with your spouse. So, if you were to apply lean thinking to your kitchen chores, you would find a way to make the process more efficient, resulting in the kitchen being just as clean as before in shorter amount of time.

If this sounds great to you, then you are beginning the journey of a beautifully organized life. Since you nowย understand the basics of lean, you can begin to apply it with a little bit of help from me and a little bit of practice.

Hopefully you’re sold by now on what lean is, so why not learn more? I will be here weekly to give tips and tricks on organization, cleaning, and lean thinking in our homes. All of us want more time to spend doing things we love, so let’s start by cutting out waste from our everyday chores and becoming efficient and orderly.

Have a blessed Memorial Day!

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