"Lean" in the City of Evansville

Published: May. 20, 2013 at 10:01 PM CDT|Updated: May. 27, 2013 at 6:01 PM CDT
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A workshop, which is scheduled to be held today and tomorrow in downtown Evansville, focuses on the business practice that was designed by Toyota.

"Lean" is a style of thinking utilized in the business world.  It aims to identify the hidden wastes that exist within different business organizations so that they can be transformed into positive and effective improvements.

Daniela Vidal, who is the director for the center of applied research and economic development at the University of Southern Indiana, is leading the workshop.  She is providing the department heads in the city of Evansville with an overview of the Lean practice and she is also helping them through a series of Lean simulations.

Vidal and Mayor Lloyd Winnecke hope to teach the department heads about the importance of regularly assessing their business methods.  If these business leaders are vigilant in their evaluations, they should be able to meet the expectations of Vidal and Winnecke, which include the optimization of resources and the enhancement of customer service.

The Lean practice should also promote economic development in the city.

"We think that by using the Lean process and by having each department head go through the Lean training, they will take their blinders off," said Winnecke.  "They will realize that they do not have to do things the same way year after year.  The city government is not alone.  Many businesses think that this is the way it has always been done.  That is not good enough going forward and that is the message that we are sending to our department heads today."

The mayor says that this is an evolution and he feels that it will succeed in easing the business interactions that exist between the public and the city of Evansville.

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