Want to Cut Your Teeth on Six Sigma Efficiency – Do It In The Kitchen
When it comes to efficiency in manufacturing, warehousing, or even in a small business, the best way to achieve superior workflows is to study the operational methods that are being used, and to refine the process. If this doesn’t really make sense to you, or if you are wondering what Six Sigma is all about when it comes to business processes, there is a little experiment I’d like you to try. And this is something you can do in your own kitchen.
Let’s say you’re going to cook yourself a meal which requires many different ingredients from your pantry, cupboards, and refrigerator. It also will require pots, pans, dishes, and utensils to prepare the meal. What if I told you that it was possible for you to prepare that meal only taking six steps during the entire process? Could you do it? Indeed, I bet you could, but you’d have to do a little bit of planning before you started. You would have to think in your mind what was needed, and where everything was located, and plot a course taking the fewest number of steps.
You might think this exercise is ridiculous, uneventful, and having no bearing whatsoever on efficient business processes. But I guarantee you it does, and if you will start thinking more efficiently when preparing meals in the kitchen, you will find inherent shortcuts, and improve the efficiency in your company or small business. I know this for a fact because I’ve tried it, and it is a method I created to help train my mind to become more efficient.
You see, before retirement I ran a franchising company, and we franchised portable car wash trucks which went to offices to wash cars. When I created my operations manual, and training program, I always took into consideration the time it took to walk from the car to the work truck or van, and back again. Generally this was about 15 seconds, and each time I could cut out 15 seconds from the washing process, I sped up the time it took to clean each car, thus, more cars could be cleaned per hour, and more revenue could be generated by the end of the day.
Six Sigma and efficient business processes matter no matter what type of business you are running, large or very small such as our franchised operations of mobile car washes. It behooves you to be thinking here, and one way to cut your teeth on a Six Sigma strategy of efficiency is to practice in your own kitchen. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.