Are you a Lean Pig? I don't mean to offend you with that question so please bear with me.
Some of you may have heard the Metaphor about a “Full English Breakfast” when it comes to Leadership Commitment. For those of you who haven’t, it goes like this:
A Pig and a Chicken are walking down the road.
The Chicken says: "Hey Pig, I was thinking we should open a restaurant!"
Pig replies: "Hmm, maybe, what would we call it?"
The Chicken responds: "How about 'ham-n-eggs'?"
The Pig thinks for a moment and says: "No thanks. I'd be committed, but you'd only be involved!"
Sometimes, the story is presented as a riddle:
Question: In a bacon-and-egg breakfast, what's the difference between the Chicken and the Pig?
Answer: The Chicken is involved, but the Pig is committed!
So what does this mean for you in terms of a Lean Transformation? Well, put simply, you must be the Pig, not the Chicken and you must create as many Pigs as possible in your organisation for the Lean Transformation to succeed. Those Lean Thinking Organisations that are World Class are only this successful because a critical mass in the Company became Lean Pigs.
Now, I accept that you shouldn’t go around telling people that they need to become Pigs, that is just for the purposes of the analogy, but it is essential that your change journey includes a way of transitioning the people in your organisation to the new way of thinking in a committed manner.
This involves some serious training, coaching and engagement to get there which, in my experience, is the only way to get to the level of commitment required.
"I aim to promote the global sharing of best practices in the application of Lean Thinking."