Muda (Japanese term) One of the key steps in Lean and TPS is the identification of which steps add value and which do not. By classifying all the process activities into these two categories it is then possible to start actions for improving the former and eliminating the latter. Some of these definitions may seem rather 'idealist' but this tough definition is seen as important to the effectiveness of this key step. Once value-adding work (actual work) has been separated from waste then waste can be subdivided into 'needs to be done (auxiliary work) but non-value adding' waste and pure waste. The clear identification of 'non-value adding work', as distinct from waste or work, is critical to identifying the assumptions and beliefs behind the current work process and to challenging them in due course. The expression "Learning to see" comes from an ever developing ability to see waste where it was not perceived before. There can be more forms of waste in addition to the seven. The Eight Wastes - DOWNTIME
Six Sigma The common Six Sigma symbol Six Sigma is a set of techniques and tools for process improvement. It was developed by Motorola in 1986. Jack Welch made it central to his business strategy at General Electric in 1995. Today, it is used in many industrial sectors. Six Sigma seeks to improve the quality of process outputs by identifying and removing the causes of defects (errors) and minimizing variability in manufacturing and business processes. It uses a set of quality management methods, mainly empirical, statistical methods, and creates a special infrastructure of people within the organization ("Champions", "Black Belts", "Green Belts", "Yellow Belts", etc.) who are experts in these methods. Each Six Sigma project carried out within an organization follows a defined sequence of steps and has quantified value targets, for example: reduce process cycle time, reduce pollution, reduce costs, increase customer satisfaction, and increase profits. Doctrine Methodologies
The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy Editor’s Note: In 1979, Harvard Business Review published “How Competitive Forces Shape Strategy” by a young economist and associate professor, Michael E. Porter. It was his first HBR article, and it started a revolution in the strategy field. In subsequent decades, Porter has brought his signature economic rigor to the study of competitive strategy for corporations, regions, nations, and, more recently, health care and philanthropy. “Porter’s five forces” have shaped a generation of academic research and business practice. In essence, the job of the strategist is to understand and cope with competition. As different from one another as industries might appear on the surface, the underlying drivers of profitability are the same. The Five Forces That Shape Industry Competition If the forces are intense, as they are in such industries as airlines, textiles, and hotels, almost no company earns attractive returns on investment. Forces That Shape Competition
Startup company Evolution of a startup company Startup companies can come in all forms and sizes. A critical task in setting up a business is to conduct research in order to validate, assess and develop the ideas or business concepts in addition to opportunities to establish further and deeper understanding on the ideas or business concepts as well as their commercial potential. Business models for startups are generally found via a bottom-up or top-down approach. Investors are generally most attracted to those new companies distinguished by their risk/reward profile and scalability. Startup Financing Cycle Startup business partnering Startups usually need to form partnerships with other firms to enable their business model. To become attractive to other businesses startups need to align their internal features, such as management style and products with the market situation. Startup culture Co-founders There is no formal, legal definition of what makes somebody a co-founder.
Aims and functions of production department Business organisation business studies and business english Production is the functional area responsible for turning inputs into finished outputs through a series of production processes. The Production Manager is responsible for making sure that raw materials are provided and made into finished goods effectively. He or she must make sure that work is carried out smoothly, and must supervise procedures for making work more efficient and more enjoyable. Five production sub-fuctions In a manufacturing company the production function may be split into five sub-functions: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. A key aspect of modern production is ensuring quality. Total quality management Car plants like Leyland build quality into every stage of the production process. For businesses to be competitive, Production and Marketing need to work in an integrated way.
A Gamification Framework for Interaction Designers Gamification is a hot topic. Missed it? On Google Trends it first appeared as a blip in late October 2010 and then took off in January so quickly that it appeared on NPR’s Weekend Edition in March. Investors seem interested, and it already has a sold-out conference and a fast-growing list of agencies that will help you “do gamification.” You can even join a quest to become a gamification expert. As I dove into some reading, a framework emerged that helped me understand gamification generally, and also specifically how (or whether!) Defining Gamification Gamification, according to Wikipedia, is: [T]he use of game play mechanics for non-game applications… particularly consumer-oriented web and mobile sites, in order to encourage people to adopt the applications. In other words, make the stuff you’re building engaging so people do what you want, or think about ways to make them want the same things you want. A Framework for Understanding Degrees of Gamification Cosmetic Game Elements
Featured case: ZARA: Staying Fast and Fresh | The Case Centre, for educators Felipe Caro, UCLA Anderson School of Management, discusses his award-winning case ZARA: Staying Fast and Fresh. Zara, the flagship brand of the Spanish retail conglomerate Inditex, is one of the leading retailers of fast-fashion, churning out frequent in-season assortment changes of knockoffs of popular runway styles and trendy fashions. The company has received a lot of attention for its centralized distribution model. In the past 10 years Inditex, and more specifically Zara, has been studied by MBA students, the world over, to understand its success in distribution and supply chain efficiency. Numerous cases have been written to better understand Zara's operations, marketing, information systems, and overall strategy, but most authors alike questioned Zara's long-term sustainability. Why Zara? Zara is definitely a success story in the apparel world - comparable to Toyota in the automobile industry - and big part of the success is due to its operations. Making contact Improving the case
Lean Startup Early business development tool Lean startup is a methodology for developing businesses and products that aims to shorten product development cycles and rapidly discover if a proposed business model is viable; this is achieved by adopting a combination of business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and validated learning. Lean startup emphasizes customer feedback over intuition and flexibility over planning. This methodology enables recovery from failures more often than traditional ways of product development.  Central to the lean startup methodology is the assumption that when startup companies invest their time into iteratively building products or services to meet the needs of early customers, the company can reduce market risks and sidestep the need for large amounts of initial project funding and expensive product launches and financial failures. Overview Precursors Lean manufacturing Customer development Principles
Production Department s Wi-Fi-Enabled Security And Automation Products Create A “Connected Home” For Busy Homeowners LYNX Touch 5100 and Tuxedo Touch™ Wi-Fi Leverage Honeywell’s Legacy in Security, Home Comfort CEA LINE SHOW, NEW YORK (June 27, 2012) – For busy parents who can’t be two places at once, the next best thing is a home that can tell you what’s going on with it, and can be controlled with a smart phone, tablet or other web-enabled device. This week, Honeywell ( NYSE: HON ) is rolling out two new security and home automation products to make homes smarter: LYNX Touch 5100 and Tuxedo Touch Wi-Fi home controller. Both products, the latest in Honeywell’s “connected home” portfolio, are being showcased during CE Week , a weeklong gathering of consumer electronics brands, people and events. The expansion of Honeywell’s connected home portfolio, which also includes programmable thermostats and applications to remotely manage comfort and security, is being fueled in part by the proliferation of smart phones, owned by nearly half of U.S. mobile phone subscribers, according to Nielsen .
Why Startups Fail « vcdave An entrepreneur recently asked me why startups fail. Startups fail because they run out of money. You’re probably thinking, “Tell me something I don’t already know!” Read on and you’ll see that statement is deceptive in its simplicity This post is based both on my experience as an investor and as entrepreneur (when I’ve boot-strapped and venture-funded). They spend too much on sales and marketing before they’re ready. Other times, this occurs with entrepreneurs who are accustomed to having lots of resources. Sometimes even when the product is great, the sales process itself isn’t understood to a point where it can be scaled: who are you selling to, how much will they really spend, and what profile of sales person does the company need to hire who will succeed at selling that particular product. Spending on the sales and marketing operations means there is no return if customers don’t bite. The market outpaces the startup’s ability to execute. Take Company X (a composite).
Engineering Project Management The scattered, futuristic world of home automation A connected refrigerator can, in theory, check your refrigerator for the ingredients you'll need for a particular recipe. Home automation lets you control simple devices like lights and blinds from appsThe home automation field is crowded with competing technology and companies Smart objects and sensors can be set up for security, saving energy and convenience Interesting objects are already connected, such as cat feeders, blinds, door locks and tea pots (CNN) -- The world of automated home gadgets is young and exciting, filled with an abundance of promising new products. At the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, there were devices and smartphone apps to control everything in your home. In previous years, the connected, or "smart," home world was mostly aspirational, with prototypes of fridges with Internet-connected displays and elaborate home security systems. How does something as low-tech as a light connect to your smartphone? Explaining the 'Internet of Things'
How New Ideas Almost Killed Our Startup Odysseus resisting the Sirens Vinicius Vacanti is co-founder and CEO of Yipit. Next posts on how to acquire users for free and how to raise a Series A. Don’t miss them by subscribing via email or via twitter. On my three year startup journey that lead to Yipit, I had over 30 other completely unrelated ideas. To be clear, the “ideas” I’m referring to are the ones that have nothing to do with your current startup. In our case, Yipit had always been about organizing local information and we had been working on it for a while. Social version of delicious (summer of 2007)Tool to recommend the best version of the online video you were currently watching (spring 2008)140it.com: Bookmarklett that smartly shortens your tweet to less than 140 characters. I now think of these new ideas as the Sirens of the startup journey. The Temptation To understand why these new ideas can be so tempting, I refer you to the incredibly insightful startup transition cycle. The Danger The Solution