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  • Writer's picturehidet77

End Point

Since I started this topic on the “Starting point,” I will continue to the “Endpoint” of work.

Although the “Endpoint” is the twin of the “Starting point,” it is a little strange.

How we end impacts how we start. A beautiful ending allows a beautiful beginning.

The location of the “Endpoint” changes the flow of work.

If we locate them randomly, the two points form a line.

But when you locate the “Endpoint” next to the “Start point,” the two forms a circle.

A circle is an ideal shape for an area. It allows the following work to start immediately when you finish the current work. Standardized work pays special attention to this movement, highlighting the dotted line. It is a waste. But it is also navigation for the operator toward the subsequent work. How we end the work navigates us toward the following work.

This navigation functionality applies to the work elements of the standardized work. Many layouts do not consider such navigation in their design. The kitchen is a great example. It is flexible to cook any food. But since the layout is flexible, we need to memorize the recipe (and I make mistakes). My coach used to say, “Don’t make the people memorize the sequence. Let the layout & process memorize it. People focus on quality & timing.” He called this vector of the endpoint as “Finishing moment.”

I experienced the power of this “Finishing moment.” An operator was performing at double the rate of an ordinary worker. The worker did not have a good reputation among his peers since people thought the worker was cheating. But there was no evidence of cheat. So I took a video and shared it with his team (when a video was not popular as today). In the instant reaction, the team was surprised that he was moving slowly. But after watching for a couple of cycles, the team recognized that he always aims for the following work element. His body or his feet twists or move slightly differently. We started to call this a “dance,” and the team copied the moves. The team became successful, and later I learned that the operator was thinking about the “finishing moment.”

The ”Finishing moment” is not an almighty concept. Instead, it is very fragile. It is easy to destroy. Without respect from the entire organization for such detail on the genba, we kill and make things difficult for the people and then blame the people for the negative impact.

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