Lean is traditionally something associated with manufacturing. Born is essence with Toyota in Japan, Lean is a production system which focuses on reducing waste, creating value for the customer and seeking to continually improve processes. A lot of people who know have experienced traditional Lean will also associate it with external consultants, flip charts, workshops and a being told how you can do your job better.
Well, we are not a manufacturer and we’re not based in Japan in the 1970’s! We are a field service-based company based in Wrexham, in the current day.
Our implementation of Lean has not involved external consultants or flip charts. Instead, we have focussed on engaging our staff and learning together about the wastes in our business and how we can reduce them. We’ve shared ideas on how we can provide a better service and more value to our customers. We have focussed on identifying any struggle that our staff encounter on a daily basis, and then trialling different suggested solutions, in an effort to make work easy, but meaningful for every member of our team. This has developed our culture, so that if you work for Healthcare Matters, you have a voice and you can have a significant impact on improving the company and the huge difference we can make to people’s lives – a privilege that we regularly discuss at our ‘all company’ morning meetings.
We visit other organisations with a similar aim of striving towards excellence in customer service, and invite other companies to come and visit our premises for a Lean Tour. If this is of interest to you, please get in touch.
To make Lean work, we’ve found that you have to be totally open and in fact hungry to hear every little detail of what your company has done which is less than perfect. By together building a no-blame culture, we’ve all learned to embrace our own failings, as this is an opportunity for us to improve individually and collectively. Although sometimes frustrating, we are in no doubt that this culture has carried us forward as a business and improve what we do for our customers.
The best thing is that as we aim to improve every single day, today is the worst Healthcare Matters will ever be!