If you’re looking to improve your process at your company, a good place to start is with LEAN. The concept of LEAN is about decreasing waste to increase the value of your product or service for your customers. Waste here is defined by anything that cripples productivity. “LEAN techniques help manufacturers and service-providers achieve the ideal outcome — delivering what customers want when they want it — while still keeping costs low, and having high flexibility and quality and fast turnaround times. More than a set of techniques, LEAN is a mindset of continuous improvement in the pursuit of perfection” (Vasisht). If your employees aren’t spending time doing unnecessary work, fixing mistakes, or doing avoidable tasks, they can spend more time nurturing your customers.
Let’s dive deeper into a couple more LEAN concepts: jidoka and poka-yoke. “The core concept of Jidoka is to stop a process immediately if there are problems or abnormalities and highlighting it via a signal” (Vasisht). With jidoka, you can stop a problem as soon as it occurs to prevent further damage and alert your employees. In terms of email marketing, having an email service provider that pauses sending on an email when it detects spam rates beyond a certain threshold or other stats that demonstrate poor deliverability is a good example of Jidoka. This could give email marketers the opportunity to fix potential issues with the email before it resumes sending and potentially save the business money and protect the reputation of the IP address.
Poka-yoke defers a bit in that this LEAN concept is referred to as error-proofing (Lucidchart). While jidoka stops a process as soon as a mistake is made, Poka-yoke prevents a mistake from happening in the first place. For example, an email service provider that asks you if you’re sure you want to exit before saving an email is attempting to prevent rework.
Now that you’ve discovered more about LEAN concepts, write down every step of your daily processes and assess where you can implement these methodologies to deliver more value to your customers.
“Overview of poka-yoke in Lean manufacturing.” Lucidchart, https://www.lucidchart.com/blog/poka-yoke-in-lean-manufacturing. Accessed 26 July 2022.
Vasisht, Prateek. “Jidoka: the quintessence of Lean.” Medium, https://medium.com/theleanreview/jidoka-the-quintessence-of-lean-38a0ee511542. Accessed 26 July 2022.
Vasisht, Prateek. “What is LEAN Process Improvement?” Medium, https://medium.com/theleanreview/what-is-lean-process-improvement-d723ee5826a8. Accessed 26 July 2022.