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Enduring Solutions for New Challenges

Continuous improvement and kata are effective for manufacturers.

2020 has been a year like no other, without a doubt. The election, the pandemic, and everything else has thrown manufacturers a lot of curveballs; supply chain disruption, workforce issues, tariffs, new rules and regulations, safety concerns, the list goes on and on. It also seems like with every new problem there is a series of new solutions, new technologies, new products, new software, that are supposed to offer the answer to our most difficult challenges. 

But sometimes the simpler solutions are a good place to start, including back to basics with continuous improvement. One approach is the kata approach that helps focus on a particular condition and a particular target, while also building a culture of practical, scientific thinking, and a drama-free mindset. 

If you’re not familiar with kata, this article by our colleague at TDO, the MEP Center for the Central NY region, offers a great introduction to this time-honored practice to problem solving. Sarah Burlingame, describes how she used kata practices to help a manufacturer overcome the obstacles involved in reopening after the COVID shutdown. 

If you are looking for kata support for your organization, please contact Steve Lockwood.
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