5S Why Do It?

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    Jeff Slater

    Someone asked the other day… “Why do 5S? It is just going to get dirty again…”

    I could have tried to be funny and respond, “why clean your clothes?” or “why bathe?” they will just get dirty again. However, I thought of a quote, attributed to Einstein… “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”

    Well, simply put… We do 5S because we are proud of where we work. If you aren’t proud of where you work and proud of your teammates, is it possible that this isn’t the right place for you? I mention to everyone that goes through my operational excellence training, that we opened the plant to our families at a past company picnic… Would you be excited or ashamed to show your family where you work?

    Do you want to turn away new business? (Mercedes, Toyota, or Volvo) Because they look at your operation and think “How can they produce and deliver quality parts on time, if they can’t manage to keep their plant clean and organized?”

    The last time you flew on a plane… Was it dirty? Did parts of your seat not function properly? If they can’t handle the simple task of cleaning, can you trust them to do maintenance on an engine or hydraulics to extend the landing gear or move the stabilizers?

    Then there is the opportunity just to make your jobs easier and less stressful – because your work areas are clean and organized. So if someone asked you “Why do 5S?”. Tell them “because I work HERE! The best company to work for in the country!” and see what their next question is?… (Can you get me a job there?)

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