Edited By Gunnar Prause, Urve Venesaar and Wolfgang Kersten
Critical Success Factors of Lean Thinking Implementation Process: Example of Estonian Manufacturing Companies. Aleksandr Miina, Maksim Saat and Ene Kolbre
243 Critical Success Factors of Lean Thinking Implementation Process: Example of Estonian Manufacturing Companies Aleksandr Miina1, Maksim Saat1 and Ene Kolbre1 Abstract The process of lean thinking implementation is a difficult and resource consuming activity. Many companies which have started the process to become lean have failed and never achieved the targets they promoted in the start. This aspect of lean philosophy has been weak- ly covered in lean literature and as a result companies are still missing a clear path to become lean. This study proposes a lean implementation process for the manufacturing companies and seeks for the critical success factors of lean implementation process based on the example of Estonian manufacturers. The data are gathered from semi-structured interviews, observations, field notes and company documents and then analysed and assessed. The assessment is based on lean thinking criteria with respective determinants. The results of the research prove the proposed lean implementation process model and bring out that construction of a company’s own production system in the form of lean house is critical in terms of success of the whole lean journey. JEL classification codes: O32 Keyword: lean thinking, lean house, implementation process, Estonia. 1. Introduction Lean thinking principles give an opportunity for the companies to increase effi- ciency and productivity and thus are in the circle of interest for them (Trombly 2002; Trott 2008). Lean thinking (hereinafter just lean) is defined as the system- atic elimination of waste (Santos et al. 2006). Ohno (1988) saw lean thinking as a...
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