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The traditional leadership does not last that long
“What is Lean doing?”, I am often asked. Let me give you an example by telling you how you can save money by getting lower diesel consumption.
Using a traditional management, you, as a manager, will tell your employees that they have to drive in a certain way to reduce their fuel consumption. But you have to say it again and again. It can be almost like asking the kids to clean up the room: “I’ve said it SO many times!” And soon after, everything is the same.
Lean leadership works better
With Lean management, a few things are very basic:
- You involve the employees
- You measure what you do
- You make it all visible on whiteboards
When you need to have the employees with you, they need to be involved. They know best where the shoe is pinching and in addition, they are just as tired of getting something pulled down over your head as you are. You can get some valuable solutions when you let your employees contribute.
Measurements are needed
You can’t motivate people to keep finding solutions unless there is a figure for what’s happening. Then it just becomes a feeling and it doesn´t matter at all.
I’ve asked people on Facebook how to measure fuel consumption. It is because the measurement must be made every day and close to the task. Otherwise, it can say nothing about the solutions you are trying out.
The answers I got were:
- We have a chip on each machine so we can get the consumption out per. task.
- We look at the tractor’s diesel meter. It can also show fuel consumption per day. hour. We have used 5.8 l in average per day. hour.
- By having a tank gauge on. There is a big difference between what individuals use when mixing feed.
- Uses a simple tank gauge. We fill up before the task and again afterwards. Then we can see what is used on the area or per. hour.
- We write it down on a whiteboard and keep track of the consumption for each task. It’s a lot of fun to watch.
In Farmtest No. 109, Machines and Plant Production, Seges, it was investigated how to save fuel. They come to the following conclusion when it comes to reducing consumption:
- Do not till the soil more than necessary.
- Do not work the soil deeper than necessary (a few cm difference in harrow depth means a lot).
- Drive with as few engine revolutions as the tractor can handle.
- Drive in high gear where the tractor can pull the implement.
- Plowing is run at limited speed, as throwing the soil costs unnecessary energy.
- Maintain the tractor according to the regulations.
There can certainly be many more for each task. I know, for example, that on a farm there was 20% difference in the time employees were loading, mixing and feeding. It was primarily the way of driving and training to load exactly the first time.
Make it visible on whiteboards
You can tell your employees that they have to drive in a certain way. But when you involve them in the solutions and you make the measurements and your experiments visible on a board, something happens with the motivation. There will be a lot of suggestions and dedication to reach your goals.
It will also create lasting changes and a culture that means that employees will continue to find solutions to the goals and focus areas you set in this way.