Monday, April 19, 2010

Push-Line / Pull-Line

Another push vs pull topic, very fitting after the last video!

This little game is designed for software developers, but demonstrates the principles of push vs pull using paper airplane or origami folding. It's a fast game, with minimal overhead, but clearly shows the key Lean principles of a pull system. Perfect for kaizen training in an office setting.

Push Rules ("Batch")

Each person uses the same rules:
  • If your work area is empty, take an item from your input area and work on it.
  • When you finish an item, put it in your output area.
Once a significant amount of work has piled in front of the third station, have the first station start to work on a yellow piece of paper and stop the system.

Pull Rules ("Lean")

Each person uses the same rules:
  • If your output area is empty and your work area is empty, take an item from your input area and work on it.
  • When you finish an item, put it in your output area.
Although the rules do not specify exactly what the end unit should look like and how to make it, it does provide direction for how to distribute the work to ensure it's not balanced:
Teach the folders how to make an origami bird or a paper airplane. Arrange it so the first folder has a trivial job, the second folder has a fairly easy job, the third folder has to do the most work, and the last person has another trivial job (e.g., toss the airplane toward a target).
There are several good discussion points about batch sizes and bottlenecks in the system. While the site doesn't provide detailed work instructions, the game is simple enough that you should easily be able to train and lead your group through it without them. And it forces you to come up with your own style of end product that may be more applicable to your specific business!

Here's the link: http://xp123.com/g4p/0410a/index.htm

No comments:

Post a Comment