TITLE

The Machine That Changed the World

AUTHOR(S)
Womack, James P.; Jones, Daniel T.; Roos, Daniel
PUB. DATE
January 1991
SOURCE
2020 Vision - Business Book Summaries;1991, Vol. 1 Issue 1, p1
SOURCE TYPE
Review
DOC. TYPE
Book summary
ABSTRACT
The Machine That Changed the World is devoted to a careful explanation of the logic and techniques of lean production. By extracting the universal principles of lean production from their initial Japanese applications, and by examining these principles in detail, the authors have made significant contributions to lessening the trade and investment tensions that exist between Japan and the West. Lean production, coined by IMVP researcher John Krafcik, uses less of everything compared with mass production. The most striking difference, however, lies in the ultimate objectives: Mass production sets a limited goal of "good enough"-meaning an acceptable number of defects, a maximum acceptable level of inventories, and a narrow range of standardized products. Lean production sets its sights on perfection-striving for continually declining costs, zero defects, zero inventories, and endless product variety.In lean production, the raison d’etre is the consumer, thus, lean distribution is viewed as an essential component of the entire system. The key objective of every distribution channel is to build and nurture lifetime channel loyalty. To this end, distribution is a fully integrated part of the entire production system, however, the Japanese acknowledge that this system will not function in the West unless cars are built to order and delivered almost immediately. For this to happen, there must be a top-to-bottom manufacturing system in place. By providing rich detail of how societies produced things during the rise and now decline of the mass-production age, as well as in how some companies have pioneered a very different way of making things in the dawn of lean production, the authors make an excellent case for why the West should take advantage of this new generation of ideas. Not to do so would be to repeat Europe’s near fatal mistake (early in the century) of not differentiating the advantages of mass production from their unique American origins.
ACCESSION #
16898517

 

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