imageHeijunka is the Japanese word for the expression “just in time”. It is not a process but rather a state of mind. It applies to every step in a lean process. Think of heijunka as maintaining a continuous flow. LEAN operates on a principle that an ideal process is one where any input or action is available or done exactly when it’s needed. Every step in the process happens one step after another without delays.

The time between actions is the turnaround time. Turn around can consume vast amounts of time and is non-value-added time for our patients or customers. Applying the principle of heijunka, LEAN processes reduce this time with a goal of eliminating it completely so the patient experiences a continuous flow of service, going directly from one step to the next with no delays.

When we think of heijunka we think in terms of eliminating or reducing turn around time. We can and should apply this to LEAN daily management. When deficiencies occur, we undertake countermeasures to eliminate the deficiencies. This may be in the form of an countermeasure or a rapid cycle improvement project (or kaizen event). Applying the principles of heijunka, the countermeasure should be started immediately. It should be tracked on the gemba board as part of the daily gemba walk until it is eliminated. If the project has a larger scope, a team should be formed as soon as possible. The team should use an A3 to track the project. The A3 should be a part of the daily gemba walk until it is completed.

Heijunka is a principle that should be applied to all aspects of the LEAN journey

What Others Have Said…

Michael developed a LEAN program for our hospital. This involved training both managers and front line staff in LEAN and its application in every department. Two LEAN projects were conducted in an effort to reduce inventory. There was a reduction of $135,000 in pharmacy inventory and $200,000 reduction in OR inventory."
Richard E. D’Alberto, FACHE
President & Chief Executive Officer
Laurens County Hospital

"Michael is a great speaker. He is inspirational and knows his trade."
Lynn Yarbrough

"Great quality- appreciate his openness to field question on the spot"
Rita Jones
CEO, Dundy County Hospital

"Michael is an outstanding, knowledgable speaker, keeps the flow going an involve the audience well."
Stephen Stewart
CEO, Artesian Valley Health System

"I like the process in implementation"
Brad Langdorf
VP Clinical Services, Community Hospital

“Michael is an excellent speaker. Content is exciting and educational.”
Mollie Heisel
Human Resource Coordinator
Brown County Regional Health Care
“Very good; usable; informative; real; encouraging”
Valerie Gigolyk
Loewen Windows

“Without your personality, coaching and spirit, we wouldn’t have made it so far.”
Ann Corrigan, RN
VP of Patient Services
Henry County Health Center

“We are utilizing the information on a regular basis. It has been exciting to see this growth.”
Pat Hales , Director of Quality and Educational Services Misericordia Health Center

“Excellent speaker- funny yet seriously important to improve our daily lives.”
Rebecca Ricartti, HR Director
Pacific Alliance Medical Center

“Michael is fantastic. Keeps the learning Entertaining and interesting.”
Stephen Stewart CEO
Artesian Valley Health System

“Great. Enjoyed the session.”
Curtis Hawkinson CEO
Community Memorial Healthcare

“Very clear and concise presentation. Always includes stories that make you think.”
Heather Greenwood, Med Tech
CHI St. Alexius Health

“Michael is a great presenter and presented he content in a manner that made it interesting and useful.”
Lynne Yarbrough, OR Director
Johnson Regional Medical Center

“Knowledgeable and energetic.”
Valerie Hangman, QI Coordinator
Providence Medical Center

I was impressed by the content and the clarity of the speaker.”
Jennifer Russell
Government of Manitoba

“Excellent quality, excellent information & keeps his agenda enthusiastic and timely.”
Terri Davis, RN
Providence Medical Center

“Dynamic speaker who leads the group to discover the answers for themselves.”
Jeff Dolan
Canada Cases Ltd.

“Mike is inspirational. A Great Motivator.”
Glen W. Buckler
Two Small Men with Big Hearts

“You have to see Michael Bayer’s presentation.”
Lois French

Investors Group

“Excellent speaker with an important message”
Rob Vineberg
Regional Director General
Citizenship & Immigration Canada

“Excellent speaker- funny yet seriously important to improve our daily lives.”
Rebecca Ricartti,
HR Director
Pacific Alliance Medical Center

“Fantastic! My cheeks hurt from laughing so much, yet I also gained so much knowledge too! Thanks!”
Daiva Griese
One Legacy

“Excellent, worthwhile. It was as good as it gets.”
Stephanie Bloodworth
Case Manager, New Directions

“Fantastic speaker. Great for any industry.”
Ron Farmer
Personal Banker, CIBC

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