Who do you create value for

Lean can be a lot of fun. But not without the basics. In this blog I will start with the first of 5 well known lean principles: Value.

5 core principles

Value is often mentioned as value for the customer only. The customer should receive a product or service with the kind of value they were looking for. But so do your other stakeholders:

  • Shareholders
  • Employees
  • Society
  • Other…

Some of this depends on the kind of organization you are working for. If it is a non-profit organization you may need to pay less attention to shareholders and more to customers, employees and at times also society.

If you work in the for-profit sector shareholders also come into play. Some for-profit organizations explicitly state that helping society is important to them. They will have special programs for sustainability or the vulnerable people in society. Some organizations do not have such goals.

You will need to consider who to create value for depending on your work environment. For lean to be successful customers and employees cannot be optional receivers of value.

Discussion at the start of a lean transformation

Some lean success stories

I will share success stories with you on a regular basis. Here are the first two. Both have a focus on better processes and building capabilities in people. The bank and the army have a very different core business. They aligned their lean efforts with their strategies and core values. Both the army and the bank are very clear who is central in creating value. They know who they invest time and effort in. And in conclusion they know why they do it. Enjoy!


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