India – going the Lean Way

India is going the Lean Way. Yes, that is true. The Indian government had in the recent past initiated the Industrial Development program that included multiple initiatives for the development of the Indian Manufacturing Industry. The government organizations and ministries have initiated many programs for the uplifting of the Indian Small, Medium and Small Enterprises (MSME). Some of these programs focus on inculcating best manufacturing procedures in the industry in terms of better technology and better efficiency machines while some other focus areas are – world class manufacturing & management principles.

One of these programs will focus on inculcating among the MSME some of the practices of the Toyota Production System. The Toyota Production System has many tools / ways to manage their daily operations like inventory management and production planning and control etc. Any process that a production company needs to take care of are also common place in Toyota too. Hence TPS can be used for any type of industry as this system has been tried and tested by Toyota successfully for so many years now that Toyota is now the number one in its field – automobile. The Toyota Production System is also termed as Lean Management / Manufacturing by some quarters of the industrial analysts.

This term ‘Lean Management’ was coined after a study conducted by the MIT research team as it found out that the TPS was based on the basic principle of taking maximum output by wasting the minimum resources. So, Lean Management basically means reducing waste from all the walks of work involved in the work place.
Given the records of the Indian Manufacturing Industry, their resource utilization has always been among the lowest worldwide. This is the primary reason for the Indian Manufacturing Industry being left behind the competition in many sectors although the quality of products are at par with others in many cases. What the industry lags behind is – in the untimely delivery and costly products compared to other competitor countries like China and others. So, only to equip the Indian MSME with the latest technological knowhow was not sufficient for making the country’s manufacturing industry competitive against the rivals who have been following the best management and manufacturing principles invented and practices worldwide. What was needed was to inculcate among the indigenous manufacturers the practices of management followed by the top tier manufacturing companies in the manufacturing business. What can be the best example in the manufacturing business than the Japanese manufacturers who are not only technologically advanced than their world wide competitors but also follow the best management principles to maintain their competitive advantage on all fronts of productivity, effectiveness and quality.

Hence the practice of ‘Lean Management’ has been introduced as a field of management where the Indian government departments responsible for development of industry in the country want to emphasize upon. So, the MSME Development Institute, Mumbai has taken up the initiative to start the ‘Lean Leader Training Program’. The Small, Micro and Medium enterprises from around Mumbai were invited for the program after payment of a minimal fee of INR 10,000 for a candidate.