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How Do I Become a Lean Manufacturing Consultant?

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  • Written By: D. Nelson
  • Edited By: M. C. Hughes
  • Last Modified Date: 23 November 2016
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People who practice lean manufacturing use management models that reduce the amount of time and materials that an organization wastes and also promote models that are flexible and which undergo continuous change. To become a lean manufacturing consultant, your first step should be to establish yourself as a manufacturing professional by earning a degree in a field such as engineering, logistics, or supply chain management. A person who wants to become a lean manufacturing consultant might plan on earning a graduate degree at some point in his or her career. It also is essential to get plenty of management experience in the manufacturing industry, to oversee a number of successful projects, and to earn lean certification and undergo continual lean management training.

When lean manufacturing models are effective, all employees in an organization feel that they are valued and most employees also tend to have multiple skills. In other words, lean manufacturing employees tend to have input into the direction in which an organization goes and also are able to work in a number of different capacities. It also is common for an organization that uses a lean model to consider client satisfaction to be the most important factor. Lean managers optimize and redesign their processes in order to produce the highest quality products.

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To become a lean manufacturing consultant, it is essential that you first learn about the manufacturing field in which you would like to work. In most cases, earning a degree in engineering with a concentration in logistics is a good way to start. It is important to remember, however, that focuses of concentrations vary from school to school. You might meet with a faculty adviser before choosing a major. Explain to him or her that you want to become a lean manufacturing consultant and discuss different skills you might need and which courses can provide you with these skills.

In order to become a lean manufacturing consultant, you should spend a few years learning real world manufacturing processes. As you gain more experience, you can apply for management positions. It is common to begin as a project manager then to move into a role where you oversee complete processes or departments. As you gain more and more responsibility, it is important to make note of how an organization is designed and how certain management models operate. Figure out where management models are successful and where they can stand to be improve.

An individual who wants to become a lean manufacturing consultant should enroll in courses where he or she can learn about the six sigma and other important lean principles. Before becoming a consultant, you probably need to implement and oversee at least one lean management model. People in consultant roles tend to be high experienced managers who have overhauled and optimized the management models of large organizations.

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