Monday, September 30, 2013


LEAN Frog focuses on improving bottom-line results through improving overall operational efficiency. Efficiency improvements are gained through the development of Lean Six Sigma processes and systems. Lean Frog proudly serves the southeast, primarily north Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee across multiple industry types with a focused effort on Small Business and Public School Districts. At LEAN Frog, we... Make Efficiency Easy!

Deming 14 Points

The transformation of the American industry can be attributed to the 14 points. There is more to it than solving small or large problems. Implementation by management indicates that the company wants to remain profitable, keep its employees and also provide protection for its investors. This particular business model was what top Japanese managers used to learn back in the 1950s and years after that.

Not only can these 14 points be utilized in both large and small businesses, but they can also be applied to service and industry oriented companies. They are linked to various divisions within a business organization.

The 14 Points

1 The ultimate plan is to improve all products and services, stay one step ahead of your competitors, stay in business and keep your employees happily employed.

2 Adapt to the new methods. The economy has changed tremendously. Businesses will have to be willing to change, take on new duties and provide strong leadership so that change takes place.

3 Realize that there is more to having quality products and services than just performing inspections. Find ways to make quality a main portion of all business practices and not just wait for quality inspections to point out the mistakes.

4 Understand that business decisions should be made based upon more things than just money. Try reducing the overall cost instead. Find a loyal and trustworthy supplier that you can use on a long term basis and dump all of the others.

5 Strive to continuously improve your business operation and productivity, which should help to decrease prices.

6 Provide on the job training for all employees.

7 Commit to leading the masses. (Take a look at Point 12 and also Ch 8). Management should make sure that both its employees and machines improve in production. Not only do production workers need better supervision, but so does management.

8 Do whatever it takes so that no one in the company works in fear, which will make the company operate better in the long run. (see Ch 3 for more info).

Friday, June 21, 2013

Lean Education

Throughout many decades, the financial challenges faced by the manufacturing industry, and the need to improve their performance and efficiency level to gain an increase in output saw them developing and successfully using a concept which is now known as LEAN. The higher education institutions are faced with increased financial challenges. The passage of time has only seen an increase in this pressure has the principles employed by the current government gives support to the creation and sustenance of a more market-driven environment. The 2011 Diamond Report contains several recommendations on how these oganizations can adopt the LEAN program to help them survive. The aim of adopting the LEAN program is to have higher education establishments increase and improve collaborative arrangements with the effective flow of information being the key of all transitional arrangements. Here is a brief oversight of the concepts of LEAN, how it was/is used in the private and public sector and how it can now be implemented and successfully used in the higher education sector to gain overall improvement in their operations.

The Integrated Approach
From as far back as the 14th century, the private sector has benefited from LEAN concepts such as Value Stream Analysis, Standard Working, Continuous Improvement, Flow and Pull. These concepts were successfully used by various military powers for purposes such as the production of warships, reducing fire time during a broadside and using weapon parts interchangeably.

Public sector bodies such as healthcare, the armed forces and local government organizations have been undergoing transformational changes and have use LEAN concepts as the heart of this process. As many sectors are now forced to face the challenge of decreasing waste by increasing productivity and efficiency, the LEAN concepts and their applicability becomes more evident. Transformation requires an integrated approach. LEAN promotes this kind of approach because organizations that adopt the program have to follow the principles of:
  • Creating a defined and effective process.
  • Sharing knowledge and creating a strategy for improvement.
  • Develop and execute collaborative projects between departments and throughout the entire organization.
The Strategic Approach
As a part of its recommendations for improvement, the Diamond Report emphasized the need for higher education organizations develop a long-term vision and implement a system that allows easy access to management data on daily performance. The measures used to develop and implement these programs along with the introduction of LEAN must be strategic. Details on specific strategies can be found within the report.
Higher education establishments can successfully adopt and use the LEAN concepts to implement the improvement recommendations contained within the Diamond Report.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

5 tips for Office Efficiency

Do you find yourself lying in bed at night thinking that you should have gotten more done during the day? If so, you are not alone. Today we are seeing an unprecedented number of daily job requirements. According to TNS Research, March 2010, for Intercall:
  • 48 percent of American workers are required to do more work with fewer resources.
  • 39 percent are doing the work of two people because of the economic downturn.
  • 47 percent have difficulty taking time off from work due to work requirements.
So how are you coping with these challenges? Here are five tips that may help you get more done at the office and help reduce those sleepless nights:
1. Eat the worm – Do the thing you don’t want to do first.
When you think about the things you have to do today, what tasks are there that you find yourself already drained just thinking about them – cold-calling potential customers; addressing an employee issue; completing that detailed proposal?
We all have things that we don’t like to do. Often those same things are very important to our business. By putting these things off we set ourselves up to spend the day being distracted and worried about what we have to do. Clear your head and get those things done first.
2. Ssshhh – Quiet please (well at least for an hour or two).
Schedule a set time for you and your office staff to have “quiet time” – a time when no emails are checked, no phones are answered, there are not interruptions, and everyone stays at their desks and focuses on getting work done.
It’s best to set this up early, near work start before people get pre-occupied or challenged with unexpected issues. At first some people will complain, but stick to this process and you will be amazed at how much you get done in that “quiet time hour or two.
3. Breathe – Take a break every 90 minutes or at least switch projects.
Have you ever dazed out while working away on your computer? Have you ever hit that mental muck where it seems longer for you to process information? Actually with most of us, it occurs about every 90 minutes or so spent focusing. Don’t try to press through this – it will take you twice as long to finish your task. Take a few minutes to clear your head with a break or at a least switch over to another project or task. It is shocking how much faster you can work when you keep yourself mentally refreshed.
4. Clear the decks, err I mean desk – Clear your desk and plan tomorrow, today.
Work is not a race. Do not work all the way up until it is time for you to leave, simply stop and leave. This guarantees that tomorrow morning you will not be as efficient as you could be. Schedule a minimum of 15 minutes prior to the end of your work each day so that you can clean and straighten your desk as well as plan your tasks for tomorrow. This will allow you to hit the ground running in the morning when you return to work. It also will help you clear your mind the rest of the evening so that you can rest and be better prepared for tomorrow.
5. Don’t watch it; stop watch it – Know how much time things take.
How much time do you spend doing email each day? On average how long does a typical phone call last? Do you know how long repeating tasks take you to do each day? Set up a clock in your office so that you can mentally take notes on how long repetitive tasks take you to complete.
Also ask yourself if these tasks are really necessary. When you understand how much time you are spending and where, you will have the opportunity to find ways to do things faster or even to figure out how to not have to do those things at all.
Byron Headrick is the owner of Lean Frog Business Solutions, a company that help businesses make efficiency easier. For more information, go to or email him at

Original article posted at

Friday, May 31, 2013

44th Annual Alabama Association of School Business Officials Conference

When the 44th Annual Alabama Association of School Business Officials conference occurs in Orange Beach, Alabama, members of the LEAN frog team will be ion hand. LEAN Frog plans to operate a Vendor Product Showcase booth with a focus on the release of SchoolSHARE, the new Internet based software. SchoolSHARE is a distinctive resolution to help school districts in maximizing the use of outdated assets internally district-wide as well as externally with fellow school districts. Also, at the seminar this year, we have a unique free to all package that supports the Susan G. Komen Foundation. The Komen Foundation has entrusted over $2 billion in investigation and life saving societal programs for victims of breast cancer. 

Beating breast cancer is extremely important to the members of the LEAN Frog group. Many of us have known people profoundly affected by the malady. If you attend the conference, be certain to stop by the LEAN frog booth and register to win some nice prizes, but also for the chance to have $100 donations made to the Komen Foundation in your name by the LEAN Frog team.

For more information on the Alabama Association of School Business Officials.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A New Lean Frog Blog

Trying to differentiate our blogging by creating one for business and one for education. There will be some crossover because we apply lean principles to both manufacturing and education.

Lean Frog, by using Lean Six Sigma, helps school systems and businesses optimize the use of resources and personnel. This is a structured process improvement model used to engage the workforce in transforming their organizations. Lean Six Sigma is focused on process efficiency and service excellence through the elimination of waste and the reduction of variation. Traditionally accepted outcomes yield a 40% or greater improvement in process efficiency and a 3:1 return on overall deployment cost.

Lean is a philosophy and a practice focused on creating more value with less work.