Gemba Is the Place to Be
No matter where you are, Gemba is really the place to be. Gemba is a Japanese term that translates to "the real place." As an efficient manager, Gemba is the place you need to be in order to get things done and improve your efficiency and profitability. Let's head there now.

A few issues back, we discussed how problem solving is much like investigating a crime scene. (Visit "Observe Before Disturbing the Crime Scene" in the MPower archive.) Japanese detectives refer to the crime scene as the Gemba, and news reporters in that country refer to themselves as reporting from Gemba when they're on location. It's the place where the action is. In manufacturing, Gemba is the place where value is added. It's your shop floor.

Observation is a huge part of manufacturing efficiency and the Lean process. The Gemba walk is a lot like "management by walking around." The point of the Gemba walk is to get out of the office and on to the shop floor to actually observe what's going on. You can see that the work that needs to be done is getting done. Conversely, you may spot problems that can be corrected before they turn into catastrophes. Inventory, both quantity and age, can be seen. You can ensure that standardized processes are being followed. You may see opportunity for improvement. There's no doubt that Gemba is the place to be.

Many production managers have increased their Gemba walks from once to twice daily because they've experienced how valuable these plant walk-throughs are. Some managers would like to continuously walk around the shop floor, believing that their observations lead to real improvements; however, who has time to do that? You simply can't be two places at once.

That scenario is not as impossible as it may sound, however. Imagine if you could gain the benefits of watching specific equipment or several different areas of your plant from your desktop. Actually, you can. The key benefits of real-time monitoring are performance optimization and safety, and MPower is here to help you implement a video monitoring program that delivers both. Think of it as a continuous Gemba walk.

With our state-of-the-art cameras, you can be in the Gemba all day, every day. Contact us to learn how you can begin to take advantage of continuous Gemba walks, and capture all the benefits of observation while getting an incredible return on your investment. In fact, with our guarantee, we'll identify the savings that will exceed your monthly fee or you pay nothing. Gemba is definitely the place to be, and MPower can put you there today.