Kamishibai for Sustainment

If you have a clear vision and you’re persistent enough, you’ll eventually have some success in your Lean journey. Your culture will start changing, managers will start buying in, value streams will start flowing and you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment. The joy will quickly subside and you’ll realize “oh crap, I don’t know how to sustain any of this stuff!”

As dumb as it sounds, its critical that you implement systems to sustain your systems. That’s what Kamishibai and Leadership Standard Work is all about. I’ve seen many people make mistakes with Kamishibai (Go-See) systems – particularly on the shop floor. People will often times deploy Kamishibai site-wide to sustain production enablers like standard work, visual management, 5S and autonomous maintenance. Well, what if an area hasn’t deployed autonomous maintenance yet? Or what if they haven’t documented standard work? What happens is that these system become implementation systems instead of sustainment systems. The audit questions on the cards are always marked as “red” and then some leader tries to run off and fix all the problems. I think it sends a bad message to the guys/gals in the shop too. If you prematurely implement these red and green audit cards, it might be a while before those audits actually turn green. It’s pretty demoralizing to see a red card in your cell every day that you can’t control.

Shopfloor Kamishibai systems should only be created for enablers that have some level of implementation already. Kamishibai without previous implementation just creates an unmanageable list of actions.

I’ve always liked how Jamie Flinchbaugh closes his Lean posts with a question to the reader so I’ll pose one here: What mistakes do you commonly see with Kamishibai deployment?

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