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Jasbir Singh
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6S - Super Easy Productivity Boosters

"5S" or now "6S" is a super easy productivity booster for any size business.  The following are the English versions of the original Japanese words developed as a tool for Six Sigma:

Sort: Do you have a junk drawer?  Is there stuff in your warehouse that no-one uses?  Do you have ink cartridges for printers that you don't own?  Do you have a pile of stuff on the floor that has not been looked at for years?  If so, you have stuff you don't need. Get rid of it!  Or, at the very least, get it out of the way of the stuff that you do use. By doing this, you eliminate the time that occurs for searching, because people need to look through the garbage for the parts or stuff they actually need. By removing the trash, or a least moving it out of high traffic areas, you will increase your staff's ability to find what they need, thus increasing productivity.

Straighten:  Mise en place.  Everything has a place and everything should be in its place.  In our community theater group, we worked with one of the best prop mistresses in the business.  What she did was lay white paper on the prop tables and drew the outline of each prop on the table with a black magic marker.  Each prop had a space and, in a second, you could see if a prop was missing or that everything was ready to go.  Think about where this can make sense in your work space.  Tools on a rack or truck should have an outline of where they belong.  If stuff has a place, then when you need it you know where to go to get it.  Make it easy for everyone to know where a tool / consumable / or supply belongs.  You will get an immediate increase in productivity because what your staff needs is now in a consistent place.

Standardize: Be consistent.  As entrepreneurs we tend to want to be flexible and  respond to each situation with fluidity and creativity.  Our customers and employees, however, want a consistent experience.  People are creatures of habit.  Many of us are happiest when things go as planned.  Religion has nailed this. That is why all religions are steeped in ritual. Ritual is ingrained in our DNA.  If that is true for our religious services, then it will extend into our business relationships, both with customers and employees.  I believe this is the single hardest yet most important thing a company can do for their growth and productivity.  Create standards.  Create The <insert your company's name here> Way!  And there should be a "company way" for everything, from the creation of your product or service to the way the trash is taken out.  People love consistent results.  We all appreciate having an anticipated experience.

Shine: Cleanliness is next to godliness, or so the saying goes.  A clean working environment is a natural result of the above steps, but there is additional value when the work areas are neat.  People respond better when they are working in a space that is clean.  It also shows that both management and staff care about the work conditions.  When a work area becomes cluttered, it can indicate the lack of caring about the worker or the work environment. Think of the broken window syndrome.  If you have a abandoned house on a block and a window gets broken; if that broken window is not fixed quickly, other windows are broken, the door gets kicked in, graffiti gets sprayed across walls.  Conditions spiral downward and it affects the whole block.  Fix your broken windows.  Make your work environment shine.

Sustain:  This is the most difficult of the "6S" to complete.  You need to sustain the good work that you have done.  One of the best methods for sustaining is through measurements.  If you can identify a couple of key performance indicators (KPI), you can monitor the continued success and quickly resolve issues if things go offtrack.  KPI could be total throughput or the number of units produced over time.  Others could be cycle time performance or how long an activity takes from start to finish.  One of the more important things would be to make it part of your new system of doing things.  You are able to sustain your improvements because they are now the way you do things.

Safety: Safety is a "NEW" S that has been added here in the US.  I think it is just as important as any of the others.  One of the quickest ways to kill productivity is to have an employee get injured on the job.  Not only are there legal and financial consequences, but there is a straight line of lost productivity.  Therefore, everything we can do to improve safety is critical to improving productivity.

So there you have it. Six easy S's to improve any process and increase your productivity:

Sort
Straighten
Standardize
Shine
Sustain
Safety

Contact The Solution Associates, Inc. to find out how we can help you use "6S" to improve your productivity.
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Enemies Closer (2013)
Enemies Closer (2013)
gogamming.blogspot.com

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Jasbir Singh commented on a post on Blogger.
Nice movie
Jack The Giant Slayer 2013
Jack The Giant Slayer 2013
gogamming.blogspot.com

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