Avoid Inaccurate Signage!

The following is a sign I saw in a plane yesterday:

Unintended signage in airliner galley

Unintended signage in airliner galley

I thought it was amusing, and told a flight attendant that it was unlikely any passenger would mistake that location for a lavatory. She explained  that this sticker was all they could find to hold up the lid of the waste container. While it may not have conveyed the best image to passengers, functionally, it was harmless, but it reminded me of not-so-harmless cases of wrong, obsolete, or ignored signage on factory floors.

Many such signs are often posted hastily as part of a “5S event.” Three months later, you see shadow boards with tools permanently missing, full pallets in front of signs that reserve the space for empties, and junk encroaching on marked transportation aisles. While each instance is a minor issue, collectively, even a small number is sufficient to destroy the credibility of the signage plantwide.

Signage on factory floors must be posted with excruciating care for accuracy and clarity, and it must then be enforced rigorously and consistently. Otherwise, it is a waste of effort.