Lean Management’s Hidden Success Factor – Putting People At The Centre Of Your Business
Too often businesses focus on their working methods, the cost of their raw materials and consumables, the ways in which the market fluctuates, plans to improve quality and reduce waste, monitoring budgets, looking after and actively seeking new customers BUT a critical success factor is overlooked, especially in very competitive markets – their Human Resources, especially where the company is striving for continuous improvement and lean working systems.
Put simply, staff who work in a culture where people sit at the heart of activity and developments go home feeling motivated, excellence is promoted, and everyone benefits. To have a truly Lean business the organisation needs to be people centric.
The following five pointers will allow your organisaton to tap into your human capital and help deliver true lean performance:
- Actively and systematically listen to ideas that come from the staff and do this without judgement or pre-conceived opinions. This means more ideas can be evaluated and explored and hopefully implemented.
- Getting to know the behaviours and opinions of all the staff, not just a selected few.
- Communicate information that is relevant and will be received by the staff as this directly links into the jobs that they do and the outcomes that they are working towards.
- Making decisions that balance the needs of the entire organisation with the needs of the individual.
- Taking responsibility for the actions of managers – this creates a culture of openness. Admitting to errors, shortcomings as well as celebrating successes is an important part of an open management culture.
- Consciously building relationships with and between people: this then helps to harness and capture the talents of the entire organization and not just the management grades.
- Recognising in public that contributions are important, and everyone has a meaningful part to play in how the organization grows and develops. After all, if members of staff are not contributing to the collective effort, why are they employed?
- Spend time and invest in coaching and development for staff to avoid them becoming demotivated and removed from where they can contribute and be seen to be doing so.
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