Lean and ISO-9000: Strange Bedfellows

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This article is a critical review of a book called Lean Startup that I haven’t read yet and won’t comment about. The review itself, however, contains some surprising statements, about, for example, ISO-9000 being a technique that emerged as part of Lean, or a about Lean being “a system designed to produce a million identical, high-quality Corollas, Camrys, and Siennas.”

I am used to thinking of ISO-9000 as the product of an international body that is unrelated to Lean, and whose implementation is centered on compliance with generic procedures rather than effectiveness. Not exactly the Lean approach to quality.

The reviewer also appears to be confusing Lean with the system developed by Ford for Model Ts 100 years ago. Lean actually includes approaches to production for Low-Volume/High-Mix as well as High-Volume/Low-Mix environments.

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