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Lean Production Tour: Lyall’s Recap [Photos]

By Admin

We promised pictures and a recap of the SoCal Lean Tour, so here they are!

This year’s Southern California Lean Tour, December 2–3, was an incredibly rewarding experience for the Lyall team. Along with three other companies, Fender Musical Instruments, Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) and Abbott Vascular, we moved a group of 60 highly engaged businesspeople through six stations within the plant to share with them what we’ve learned over the years. This was Lyall’s second time as a featured company on the tour, so we tried to really fine-tune the presentation to get the most out of the limited time we had.

Here’s a quick overview of our six stations:

Hoshin Kanri — Here, we talked about how Lyall applies the PDCA process to its strategic planning through the experiments of Hoshin Kanri.

Hoshin Kanri.jpg

Right Sized Equipment — This part of the tour focused on the ways we incorporate this methodology into LYCOFIT® assembly cell as well as applying lean principles into our custom machine building.

Right Sized Machines.jpg

Single Piece Flow — For this section, we visited our EFV assembly cells and demonstrated how Single Piece Flow is the heart of a balanced process.

Single Piece Flow.jpg

Toyota Kata — We used a Riser assembly cell to illustrate how we’re beginning to incorporate this methodology into the Lyall business system.


Kaizen Blitz (Formal Rapid Improvement Event) — The Spool Fabrication Cell served as the backdrop for discussing this highly efficient methodology.

Kaizen Blitz.jpg

Poka-Yoke (Mistake Proofing) — To help attendees understand how to apply mistake proofing, we referred to the PE to PVC Transition Assembly Cell.

Poka Yoke.jpg

The highlight for us was the engagement and interaction of the attendees and the encouragement the Lyall team received from AME Western Region Board Member Tom Murphy, who called ours one of the best tours he’s seen. We asked Tom if he’d like to share any additional thoughts about the tour for this recap. He said, “Visually, Lyall is among the best in the industry of those on a lean journey. The Lyall Business System exemplifies their degree of separation from lean thinking as knowledge of a tool-set to lean thinking as the interconnectedness and synchronization of people, process and purpose enabling the manufacture of a single heartbeat to deliver the voice of the customer.”

Wow! Thanks, Tom, we’ll take it! It’s great to know that our hard work is paying off not only from a business perspective but also from a human one—there’s nothing better than being allowed to serve as an example to those eager to learn.­­


If you’re eager to learn more about Lean Manufacturing, check out these other blog posts!

Lyall's Lean, Mean Custom Machines: 1973 to Today [Photos]

Shattering the Myths of Lean Manufacturing

Lean Manufacturing Basics—Lean Lingo Explained