'Twas a 5S Christmas [Poem]
Poetry has always been one of our favorite parts of the holiday season—from Longfellow’s “Christmas Bells” to Mark Strand’s “The Coming of Light.” So when we happened upon this little 5S gem based on Clement Clark Moore’s “A Visit from St. Nicolas” (commonly known as “The Night Before Christmas”), we just had to share. We hope you enjoy it…
‘Twas a 5S Christmas
Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the plant
Machines were not running; production was scant.
We’d been forced to shut down and were incurring large fees,
Cause one of the workers dropped a wrench in line three.
Production mistakes had the owners complaining,
So we’d sent all the workers for refresher training.
The foreman in his hardhat, and I in my tie,
Had just settled down to discuss ROI.
When out on the floor there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my desk to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
And ripped the Venetian blinds off the wall with a crash.
The loading dock door somehow had been lifted,
And inside the door snow had already drifted.
When what did my wondering eyes then behold?
But a white-bearded man shuffling in from the cold.
He had a broad face and a round little belly
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly.
His eyes twinkled bright and his dimples were merry.
The foreman exclaimed, “Now this dude is scary.”
He spoke not a word but went straight to work,
Rearranging and cleaning like some kind of jerk.
He threw things away that were taking up space,
And organized stuff that was in the right place.
The tools that were needed he moved to be near;
Equipment not needed he moved to the rear.
He moved with precision, his speed it increased
I picked up the phone to call the police.
Then from his beard, as pure white as winter,
He pulled out a small DuraLabel-brand printer.
He set it up quick, with no cord or cable,
In the blink of an eye he was printing out labels.
“Label this counter space, label this drawer!
Label this cabinet, label some more!
From the top of the window to the base of the wall,
We’ll label everything, once and for all!”
He yelled this out loud, the right jolly old elf,
I laughed to see him, in spite of myself.
He labeled the floor and he labeled the cables.
“With 5S in place, to work they’ll be able!”
And then in a twinkling, I knew what he meant!
Our workplace had been as confusing as heck!
I joined him in working and when we were through,
You knew where things were and you knew what to do.
I thanked him profusely but he remained stoic,
And went to the break room and purchased a Coke.
I called him a hero, a magical man,
But outside the building he’d already ran.
He greeted twelve reindeer and jumped in a sleigh
And up from the ground his team then flew away
But I heard him exclaim as they rose through the night:
“I’ll come back next Christmas to audit your site!”
To all our friends: We hope you have a very merry (5s) Christmas, a wonderful holiday season and a lean and happy New Year!