(Still) learning from Toyota | Deryl Sturdevant

See on Scoop.itlean manufacturing
“A retired Toyota executive describes how to overcome common management challenges associated with applying lean, and reflects on the ways that Toyota continues to push the boundaries of lean thinking.”


Michel Baudin‘s comments:

You just can’t pass up an article with the perspectives on Lean of a recently retired Toyota executive, even if it is in the McKinsey Quarterly. Most interesting are his stories about plants outside of Toyota that he visited recently, where he criticizes his hosts for complacency.

Because of the author’s background, when he says “Lean,” he means TPS or the Toyota Way. He also uses Toyota’s own “respect for people.” mistranslation of its “respect for humanity” (人間性尊重) principle.  Again, it’s not about saying “please” and “thank you” but about taking full advantage of the unique capabilities people have when compared to other resources.

See on www.mckinsey.com

The NUMMI Story (Minus the Ending) | Matthew May

See on Scoop.itlean manufacturing
“At the risk of being repetitive, allow me to retell one of my favorite stories. First, imagine the worst place you’ve ever worked. The darkest, most depressing, soul-sucking work environment you’ve ever had the misfortune to inhabit.

Got it in your mind’s eye? Now, multiply it by oh, say, 100. That’s how bad the place I’m about to describe was. I know, because I spoke to people who were there.

The year was 1982. It was the year of Jordaache Jeans. The year of Wendy’s “Where The Beef?” commercial. And the It was 1982, the first full year of Reaganomics.

The place was the General Motors Fremont, California plant…”

Michel Baudin‘s comments:

The NUMMI joint venture between GM and Toyota is a great story of thorough transformation. It is how a car plant from worst to best. Unfortunately, it ended in 2010, when GM when bankrupt and Toyota declined to take over the entire venture.

Now Toyota is part owner of Tesla,  the facility is the Tesla plant, and it has been getting renewed attention as such. This is a new lease on life but Tesla’s 10,000 cars/year do not compare with the 250,000 NUMMI used to make.

See on matthewemay.com

How the Tesla Model S is Made | The Window | Wired

See on Scoop.itlean manufacturing

If founder Elon Musk is right, Tesla Motors just might reinvent the American auto industry—with specialized robots building slick electric cars in a factory …

Michel Baudin‘s insight:

Tesla just released this promotional video showing glimpses of its factory, the former NUMMI plant in Fremont, CA. Tesla is partialy owned by Toyota.

See on www.youtube.com

Life after NUMMI and Solyndra for Fremont, CA | Manufacturers’ Monthly

See on Scoop.itlean manufacturing
“How Fremont is turning itself into a magnet for manufacturers Manufacturers’ Monthly “The Warm Springs District has a centralised location, vast and unoccupied land, accessibility to BART [Bay Area Rapid Transit system] and a world-class…”


Michel Baudin‘s insight:

While Fremont, CA, is not well known outside the San Francisco Bay Area, it has a place in history as the site of the first auto plant in the US to fully apply the Toyota Production System, 5 years before it was called “Lean.” It was the NUMMI jjoint venture between GM and Toyota. It resurrected a shuttered GM plant in 1984, rehiring 2,500 of its former workers, and successfully built cars for both owners for 26 years until the GM bankruptcy forced its closure in 2010, causing the direct loss of nearly 5,000 jobs, not including the losses in the network of suppliers that had grown around the plant. Solar cell panel maker Solyndra was then a short-lived hope for revival in Fremont, until it went bankrupt in 2011.

Tesla now produces cars in part of the old NUMMI plant, giving it a 3rd lease on life, and disk-drive maker Seagate is moving into the old Solyndra facility. According to this article, Fremont is now marketing itself as a hub for high-technology manufacturing.

I live across the Bay from Fremont, and root for its success.

See on www.manmonthly.com.au