19 February 2010

Five-S

NPR's All Things Considered had a short feature on Matt LeBlanc, who is an "efficiency expert" at a global shipping company.

LeBlanc visits a site for a few days or weeks, watches the workflow there, and gives recommendations:

"We [...] move a lot of printers," he said. "I'm sure you guys have printers in your office ... have you ever thought about why that printer is there, and if it makes sense for it to be there?" Over the course of a career, you might walk miles back and forth.

And LeBlanc says he can hardly help but apply efficiency principles to his private life:

"There is a thing called 'five-s': it's sort, straighten, standardize, sanitize and sustain," he said. "I five-s my toiletries in the morning."

How very kaizen (though I'm sure everyone knows someone just like that). I find something compelling in the idea of rethinking the things that most people are content to leave unchanged for their entire lives.

1 comment:

  1. Giving up his movie career (after Friends) was probably wise.

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