Optimizing The Support Model

Optimizing The Support Model

Author: Ben Carter, Manager Of Lean & Operational Innovation at Talley-Riggins. Connect with Ben on LinkedIn

You have missed the opportunity to improve your position in the market.

Not adopting the Lean process properly has hurt your bottom-line margin, wasted time, and increase costs.

The most common error when adopting the Lean process is treating the process as an appendix of your business as something you measure only.  Most organizations see Lean as a chart on the wall rather than adopting the process as means to run your business.  Integrating the process in how you run the business, how you align partners and suppliers to all operate in the same direction will enable your organization to achieve the full benefits of Lean.

Yes, that’s the reason, it’s not complicated it’s actually simple, just following the Lean process as it was designed as a function of “How” you operate.

When you look at the attributes of a successful Lean project, you see a team moving in one direction with a clear and concise vision. Project teams leverage a managed disciplined process, governed by an effective support model to ensure sustainable success through a project’s lifecycle.

So how do we take this success and apply it to all of our people and projects across the organization, community, and industry?

We Optimize the Whole.

Rooted behind Respect for People, which is the core tenet of Lean, is optimize the whole. It is imperative that we take the time to pause, reflect, and understand our current state. We must conceptualize what our current state looks like in order to set the Vision (Goal), Mission (How we achieve our Goal), and Strategy (Action Plan to achieve Goal).

No roadmap to Lean is perfect.  However, Lean is a journey, and we must embark on grasping the reality of the resources, dedication, and GRIT it takes to train, educate, foster, and succeed.

Lean is not a DROP AND GO. It requires continual training, education, and constant learning that your company is responsible to support and maintain. We don’t fail at Lean; Simply, we just lose focus on the support model that is critical to success.

So how do we optimize the whole? We optimize our support model!

Two Reasons Most Processes Fail

  1. The solution does not fit the problem, or the problem is not clearly identified.
  2. Buy-in/adoption has not been integrated for sustainable success.

Our Keystone Methodology enables Processes to work for our People.

  • Lean – Framework
  • Process – Tools, Tech, and Strategy
  • People – Support Model

Lean, as it relates to your business framework, should be a function of “How” you do business and not “What” you do (tools, technologies, processes).  Although the “What” is essential to the overall implementation of Lean, it is not the Keystone to a sustainable living process.

As technology is becoming more end-user driven it has become easier to adopt Lean into your portfolio, but it does not ensure Lean efforts will be successful on your projects.  Organizations continue to struggle adopting Lean and maintaining efforts due to the incorrect prioritization of Process before People.

Our Keystone method is inherently designed to eliminate this issue and drive adoption/buy-in through the end user as they become process drivers. All of our Lean practices are governed by this method to ensure that the support model is in place for every individual and project team.

There are two key areas of focus that enable success in Lean.

  1. Ability To Elevate People – Respect, Train, Educate, and Support.
  2. Completeness Of a Living Lean Process – Sustainable Success through a Managed Disciplined Process.

PROCESSES CREATE PREDICTABILITY, but without the focus on people driving the processes most often they end up being a waste of time and effort with little to no value to the end user, customer, or organization.

We must continue to train, educate, teach, and elevate every team member on a continuous basis. When our people grow, we ALL grow. Sustained growth in Lean is fostered by elevating your people through a managed disciplined approach. You must invest the time and resources to develop your people and their mindsets.

It is essential as an industry to continue the transformation of Lean construction through optimizing our support of putting our people first as a means to mitigate these challenges. Together we can drive home the values, culture, and hope we all have to better our paths and the paths of those yet to come.

OPTIMIZE THE WHOLE – We are better together!


Want to see what Talley Riggins is doing to improve work processes? Checkout their videos on the LCI Field Crew Huddle YouTube page.


Video highlights:

How Last Planner System® Dashboards Foster Collaboration

Example of Milestone Planning & Tracking

How to Use Look Ahead Planning with Electricians

Root Cause Analysis & Weekly Work Planning for Job Site Problem Solving

Using PPC Boards in Lean Construction

Constraint Management in Lean Construction

Strategic Site Logistics Planning