Imagine you’re swimming in a large pond in Louisiana. That's right, you're in alligator territory. But it’s not the alligators on the surface you need to worry about – you can see those. It’s the ones under the water that concern you.

And that, my friend, is the entire point of 5S+1 (or 6S). It makes hazards, danger, and problems easy to see. It surfaces the proverbial alligators in your environment.

Join Lean, Kaizen, and 5S+1 expert Bryan McWhorter as he reviews these 5 key steps:

1. Establish 5S+1 benefits and purpose.
2. Plan for implementation. Succeed on the first try.
3. Early wins using 5S+1 while you implement it.
4. Three elements that must be in place for safety that 5S+1 will provide.
5. How to sustain all your 5S+1 improvement; a system that is self-monitoring, and self- correcting and self-sustaining


[Webinar Transcription]


Tiffany: Hello and a warm welcome to everybody. We would like to wish everyone a good morning, a good afternoon, or a good evening, depending on where you are in the world. My name is Tiffany and I'm a part of Safeopedia.

Safeopedia’s mission is to support the EHS professionals, operational folks, and any safety minded individuals with free safety information, tools, and education. I'd like to extend a huge thank you to those dedicated professionals for the great work they do on a daily basis.

Just a reminder, the webinar is being recorded, and we’ll send out a link to the recording to everybody in a few days. This webinar is for you, the audience, so we’ll keep it interactive. Get your questions into the GoToWebinar console as we go, and we'll get to them at the end of the presentation.

Today, we are proud to present “5S + 1: The Foundation for Safety and Improvement — How to Implement It Successfully”. This Safeopedia webinar is being presented by National Marker Company, a preferred manufacturer member of Safety Network. Safety Network demands excellence, so demand Safety Network.

It is now absolutely my pleasure to introduce to you today's presenter, Bryan McWhorter.

Bryan is a productivity expert and safety professional with over 10 years’ experience in implementing and teaching safety, leadership and productivity tools. He gained much of his knowledge and experience through over 30 years as a supervisor, safety officer, and senior trainer in the manufacturing industry at the largest fluorescent lighting factory in the world.

We're also very fortunate today to have Patrick Madigan, the general manager of National Marker Company, joining us for the Q and A session after the presentation. I’m very grateful to have you sit back, relax and enjoy this webinar. With that, Bryan, please take it away.

Bryan: Thank you, Tiffany. I’d love to also thank National Marker Company for making this information available, and Safety Network who got me, and all of you for taking time out of your busy schedules to join us today.

Give you a little bit of idea of my background when it comes to 5S + 1. I was introduced to 5S back in 1997 as part of a three-week long, very intensive Lean program. And as is often the case, that one failed. It wasn't until 2005 that they decided to try it again. This time, it took, and we ended up really transforming our entire facility. I became the senior trainer for them, teaching Lean and 5S, and we ended up really rolling it out to many facilities around the world.

Now, what I learned in that from the failure with our first attempt to all our other successes is what we're going to share with today. There's a lot of power in 5S. It is definitely one of the gems of the Lean Continuous Improvement Toolkit, and we want to let you be able to implement it successfully on your first try. So, with that, let's begin.

Okay, we are all very much benefits oriented. We have to know the purpose of something before we really dig into it. And it's been kind of amazing through the course of my life since I've been involved with Lean. I would talk to 5S experts, Lean experts, and yet they did not understand the purpose of 5S + 1. They understood some of the benefits but not the real why you do it. So, before we get into the what or the how, we've got to have that why down.

Now, for 5S + 1, this is very simple. The only reason we do 5S is to surface problems. As a matter of fact, I'll give you a tip: Every Lean tool does that same thing. Whatever the Lean tool is in regards to the subject matter it deals with, it is just surfacing problems, like kanban surfaces problems for supply chain or inventory.

Okay now, for 5S + 1, everything we do is going to revolve around two central activities, and that's eliminating waste and establishing visual order. If I were teaching a 5S class, often I would start it like this: I would have a whiteboard up in front of the group, and it would be just covered with crap. I'd have words, letters, numbers doodles on it. So, I would tell the people, with all this clutter on here, if I were to write an important message for you on this whiteboard, you would never see it because it would be buried in all that clutter. So, the first thing I do is wipe the whiteboard clean, so eliminate waste. And then the second thing I would do is now write messages on there that are important that you need to know. So, in a nutshell, there you have it. You know, many work environments I see are like that whiteboard that’s covered with clutter. You can't tell what's going on because of just all the stuff that's there.

Now, if you're not giving people that why, and they're not enjoying some early wins with their 5S + 1, not seeing those benefits, then it's most likely just annoying them. Because if we had people doing something, or they're expanding energy and working, but they're not getting a benefit for it, how long do you think that's going to go on? Probably not very long. So, it's like our 1997 experience — it died quickly.

So, let's look at that, the first step that eliminating waste.

Now, Taiichi Ohno of the Toyota Motorworks came up with these 8 Forms of Waste. And we need our employees to have a basic understanding in this because if we want them to surface waste in their environment, they have to be able to recognize the waste that they're surfacing. So, this is where I definitely appreciate National Marker Company that they have a lot of tools like this. What I recommend is, put some signage up. Get people to where, with time, they memorize these, and it's really not that hard to do. I have one of the worst memories of anyone you could ever meet, and I memorized 8 Forms of Waste the first time I heard it because there are so many acronyms, like the one you see right here of DOWN TIME. So, Defects, Overproduction, Waiting, Non-Uilized People, Transportation, Inventory in excess, Motion and Extra processing.

The thing is, our brain is a pattern seeking mechanism where it’s looking to connect the dots. So, once we understand a waste, if we see it, it kind of nags at us. We just want to correct it. It's in our DNA. We're problem solvers. So, we'll use like extra processing or over processing. To understand that one, if you have a meeting that takes an hour that could have been done in 30 minutes, that's extra processing. If you had 10 people at it, and you could only have five, again, over processing. Anytime you're doing anything to your service or product not valued by the customer, over processing.

So, again, it's important for that first step, for this right here, to eliminate waste, that people can recognize the waste they're looking for. And again, when we're doing this, when we're removing those, we're removing frustration because dealing with waste is not fun. We'll talk more about that as we kind of get into the webinar here.

Okay, that second side. Remember, the 5S coin has two sides: eliminating waste and then putting visuals in place. Now, those visuals, what we want to do is create a work environment that is self-ordering, self-explaining, self-regulating and self-improving. We don't want people tied up with the day to day functions of just fighting to get through their workday. We want them to focus on continual improvement and customer satisfaction, adding value. And this is a lot of what 5S and Lean in general does: Put systems in place to take care of your activities where they become self-monitoring, self-regulating, and self-correcting to where everything that you need to happen through the course of the day happens on time, every time because of visual devices.

And we're used to visual devices in our personal life. You know, you walk into a McDonald's, and they're lined up with visual devices that you can tell exactly what to do. Same with, say, Disney World or going down the interstate. We're used to visual cues, yet walk into different departments in a factory or a business, and you can't tell what's going on because there are no visual devices. We want to teach our environment to talk for us.

Okay, I mentioned before, it's so important for people to understand the benefits. You know, what's the return for my effort? We all have our favorite radio station, the WIFM. What's in it for me? I need to see that it's going to benefit me. So, management wants me to do this 5S thing. Okay, so what am I going to get out of it?

It's kind of interesting back in 2005 when we started our Lean program again. I remember the first people that showed up for the training, they had the look on their face kind of like, “I just reflected.” That “oh man, this is going to really be dismal and boring.” But we did such a good job with that first transformation that the rest of the teams came really expecting something good. This first team had reduced a lot of their frustration.

Well, take just like even searching for items. At this point in my life, I'd love to know — or maybe not — how much time I've spent already looking for car keys, my wallet, gloves, my cell phone, sunglasses, TV remote, my children. You know, those things we're constantly losing. Now, yeah, I say that last one jokingly, but as a side note here, a while back I googled items people most often lose, and children was actually on the list. Kind of scary side note.

Anyway, back to this. Increasing workflow and efficiency. When we’re doing the 5S steps, part of it is we're going to optimize the items that we interact with in terms of tools, supplies, information. So, we make it to where workflow is better and efficiency improves. And this is important for management to see that there is a financial payback for what they're doing. So, part of that removing frustration, we're going to improve all aspects of what we do.

And here's an interesting thing. When you give people the opportunity to improve the environment where they work in to where I can redesign my work area to where it works better for me, they're usually going to jump on it. You know, I get behind those things that make my life easier, that make it better. And that goes to that boosting morale and team building. Often, 5S + 1 is the first thing you do in terms of implementing continuous improvement.

Going to that next one that kind of shows why, you need 5S + 1 as a foundation tool. It's going to be very difficult to do any continuous improvement without 5S already in place. For one thing, you're not going to have the stability to build on. But they go back to this, again, I've seen it boost morale and team building to amazing levels.

In that first factory that I helped implement it in is a 24-hour operation with 500 employees and 18 departments and teams. Now, 5S was the first thing that they did as a team to really start down this road of continuous improvement.

I can think of one team that I — I went to their first meeting, and it was horrible. I mean, people were screaming at each other. We actually had one lady that was crying. It was just a dismal mess. Well, 5S was the first thing that they did. And over the course of a month, they started to transform some of their areas. And this was a big team of like four areas in the factory. One of the problems they had was their tools were always turning out missing. Well, one person on their team had an idea of let’s set up peg boards, five boards — I think four boards — in the different areas. We'll put colored border around the board, so like one board is blue, then we’ll put blue tape on the tools that go onto this board. Now, again, the brain is a pattern seeking mechanism. It connects the dots. We hate seeing a pattern broken. So, when they did this, all of a sudden, their tools weren’t turning up missing any more. So, they did the same thing with their supplies and information. And the feeling of pride it gave this team was amazing. A few months later, I visited one of their meetings, and it was ran like a business meeting. I mean, very respectful to one another, going over KPIs, their next projects. It was truly amazing.

So, we already touched about this. Again, 5S really has to be there because it's going to give you stability. If you look at a house and Lean that Toyota put together, again, they have 5S and standardization as to their core components that need to be in place before you do anything else.

Okay, safety, especially with the mindset of safety like Safeopedia, 5S is so powerful. Remember, everything we do in safety comes down to two perspectives: unsafe conditions and unsafe behaviors. Well, those are the two sides of that 5S coin. The first one of removing waste, well, waste and clutter hides unsafe conditions. It's hard to see that slip-trip hazard when you're used to looking at a mess on the floor anyway. You can have something blocking electrical box or a fire alarm, and you never notice it because you know what, it just blends. Then that other side of that coin putting visuals in place, the reason we do that is to drive behavior. If something doesn't drive a behavior, don't do it. There's got to be a purpose for everything we do. So, unsafe conditions and unsafe behavior are both addressed through 5S + 1. So, very powerful tool when it comes to safety.

Okay, so here’s our 5S’s. We got Sort, Set to order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain. Now today, we're mainly focusing on the benefits and the tips that you really need to know to do this successfully. There's lots of great information out there on the how-to, the what, and the wh. Er, the what and the how. I want to make sure that you understand the why, the benefits, so you can roll it out that way. But we're still going to touch on each of these briefly.

One thing I'll point out to you is that that 5S has been around for a long time. This is not a new concept. There's evidence of 5S being used back in 16th century shipbuilding. It was used as part of the JA Program, World War I. It was used by training within industries in World War II. But definitely kudos goes to Toyota for lining it up with five words and for creating the structure that you kind of see there before you. And often today, I'll hear it called 6S, which I love because safety is a part of every aspect. At every step, you want to infuse safety, and it makes sense. When you're looking at something working with each of the steps, let's do it from a safety perspective.

Okay, when your implementing anything new, driving any change, you got really one of two options for implementation. You can go a mile wide and an inch deep, or an inch wide and a mile deep. You know that mile-wide and an inch-deep, the problem with that is you know we have limited resources. You might bite off more than you can chew, have too big of a battle front. And, again, it's very difficult to do it that way.

When we did it in 2005, we picked one team, one department, and we took our time and did it correctly, and let them enjoy and see the benefits. We went for quick early wins. So, we trained the team in 5S, we let them help design their work area, and we implemented a very good 5S + 1 program. Now, the interesting thing with that first facility that we did this app, again, with 18 teams and 500 employees, it took, you know, between a year-and-a-half and two years to really do the entire facility. By the time I got around to training that 18th team, they'd already implemented 5S + 1 on their own before they've been trained. Many of the teams that saw what we did with that first team, and they loved it.

When this first team did their transformation — you know, this factory was started in 1967. So now we have this one team where you can walk into their department, and all of a sudden you notice that it's brighter, it's cleaner. The walls have been repainted, the equipment's been painted. They have signs and visuals. You just kind of walk into that area. The brain, again, being a pattern seeking mechanism, you relaxed. You could tell what was going on around you, and it makes you feel better. So, the other departments wanted that, where we had a few odd instances of people that were in that team that had to go on to other teams just because changing shifts or whatever. And they go to a department that wasn't 5S yet, and they hated it. They'd already learned the benefits of 5S + 1, and now they're back to square one and just did not like it.

Okay, so as I mentioned, we'll go through the steps because, you know, I want you to have a basic idea, and this will maybe kind of give you some guidance to what it all entails with 5S. And again, I want to give kudos to Toyota for lining it up in the format that we're bringing to you. So again, they definitely get the trophy for optimizing the 5S program.

So, you know, those words are — that first one with S is Sort. And like that whiteboard that I had to clean off before I could write anything important on it, we need to go through our department, or the first place we're doing 5S with, and look at the items there — what's necessary and what's unnecessary. Where people do their work is called the value field. We don't want anything in the value field that’s not necessary. Again, the more you have of anything, the less value it seems to have, from words to anything. Again, we want to clean that area and optimize it for their work. And this removes a lot of frustration itself.

So, we're going to look at every item in that value field, and we're going to look at it from a perspective of how often is it used, and how important is it. So, you might have an item that they don't use very important, er very often, but it's critical that, you know what, if something breaks down, they need to get this immediately. So we're going to keep it there. But say another item, they only use maybe once a week or monthly, it doesn't need to be in that value field.

Here's the main thing you want to look at. You don't want them to have to look for it. Again, looking for items is frustrating. We don't want that. It might be stored in a different area, but they need to know where they can go and get it immediately. So, walking to something… that's okay. Searching for something… no. We want to be able to set up our environment where if a tool, supply or information is missing that is critical to them, they notice it immediately. We don't want to set up to where, you know what, typically we don't notice a tool is missing until we need that tool or that item. Now, we don't want that. You want to be able to tell immediately when something's gone.

So, in Sort, we're looking at everything, and we're going to create three different categories for items: Red, Yellow, and Green. Red means the items is going; they don't need to be in that value field. Yellow means we're not sure; we need to get more input from the employees in that area. And Green means it stays; this is something they use daily. We're going to keep it in that value field.

Now you don't have to use tags. Again, I look for the best way to do this for the environment you have. I've been with groups that use little stickers like you buy at an office supply store — little red, yellow and green dots they put on. I've been with other groups where they use an area. So you had a red tag area. If you don't need this cord, we're going to put it in this area. Let everyone look, if they determine it, yeah, we don't need it, then we'll get rid of it.

Now, with Phillips, we had a red tag area that we would put things and then other teams can look and see if they needed it. One team threw out a file cabinet, another team needed it, great. They could take it. But the interesting thing with that facility is these red tag items, if we determine that they were not needed, we sold them to salvage and some on eBay, and actually got enough money to buy a white paint to paint the entire interior of that factory. So, now we use money from items from our 5S + 1 to repaint the entire factory and help beautify it. It was really amazing.

So again, red tag = go, green = stay, yellow = you're not sure. But get everyone's input, and then you're going to determine what needs to stay in that value field, and now you're going to set it in an order that makes sense. You'll use something called Smart placement. So, you want to put like items together. So, let's say you've got lubricants to go in an area, WD-40 oil, things like this, put them together. Put labels in where they go. But the thing is, when you have items like that together — cleaning supplies, all on racks, brooms, dust pants, things like that — when one is missing, you know immediately. So, you know cutouts for tools that go inside drawers, things like that.

So again, we want to teach our environment to get our attention, and we want to design everything for optimal work and optimal flow, reduce motion. So, now a worker has the tools and supplies that’s close to the point of use where he needs them as possible, and he'll notice immediately when they're gone. There's so much power to that.

When you look at this slide here, great example of before and after. So, we'll say this is the environment before we do 5S + 1, and here's the environment afterwards. Again, remember a brain is a pattern seeking mechanism. If it sees a pattern broken, it kind of bugs us. So, once you have an environment like this, you can maintain control. We're relaxed. If one of these is outside the line, we know to put it back.

Now, in this you have three elements to comprise a tool called automatic recoil. Automatic recoil uses three components: your border, your address, and your labels. So, here's a border, the address on it, and then labels on these. Now one of the things that I do love is typically when you do 5S, you'll find that you don't need as many of these storage things as you have. So, I love that they went from three to two. When you're doing 5S, if you have a big area, lots of departments, you're going to find that you do not need benches, cabinets, drawers because what happens is, it's very easy to get items and to fill it with clutter, and often it's hard to get rid of things.

When you put items on a bench, in a drawer, in a cabinet, the hidden message is, it’s okay to put stuff here, then that stuff multiplies. We want to get control. Once you have something like this, again, people coming into that environment know what's going on, and this is sustainable. This is not sustainable. Again, next week, there might be four bands here or one band. Again, there's no sense of order. We’ve already got our standard set way too low. So again, we want to create visual information, put it into visual meaning, and use it to direct behavior. As I mentioned, if it doesn't direct behavior, don't do it.

I walked into a consultant for 5S’s office wants and he had everything in his office labeled including a sticker on his phone saying Mike's phone. So, I asked him I go, Mike, when you're not in your office, who else uses it? No one, its just mine. It’s locked when I’m not here. So, you know the labeling really just looks silly. You know, if someone has a learning disability to where he doesn’t recognize a phone, that label is not going to help. And when we do things silly, we lose credibility. So again, if it doesn't direct a behavior, don't do it.

Shine. Okay, we're not trying to get Martha Stewart approved, or get into Better Homes and Factories magazine. We want to clean because, again, dirt, oil, grime, dust, these hide issues. You can't see that slip trip hazard if you got clutter and dirt and grime always anyway.

And does this sound familiar to you? You work in a store or factory or somewhere and they go, “You know what? Next week or tomorrow, we got a very important tour coming through, so we need to really extra clean it today.” You know, that's just wrong. That's saying that you're going to make it nicer for people who are visiting than for the people that work in that area. Again, let's have it clean for us. Let's set a standard that says, we want it really good for us.

So, we had a saying in a lot of the places I help implement 5S that, we want it showroom or living room quality. Let's say you invite me over to your house for lunch, and you have a beautiful house. You have a nice clean carpet, and I walk in without wiping my feet, and I leave footprints on your carpet. You see it immediately. Secondly is, you give me a glass of tea, and I lay it on the coffee table not on a coaster, leaving a ring. “Okay, Bryan, you got to leave. You're messing things up. You come over to my house, and everything's a mess. I got newspapers on chairs. You got to clear a spot to sit down. You’re not worried about messing things up. I would never notice that you're worrying about getting a disease or sticking this up.” Again, we need to get it nice and clean for ourselves, so we can tell when there's a problem. We want problems surface immediately.

So, that rolls us into the Standardize. Two levels when it comes to standards. One is the standard that you want for everything you're doing, like I mentioned, that clean living room versus mine. Yeah, mine had a very low standard. So, you want to establish a high standard of professionalism and quality for all you do, then have standards in place that are going to be maintained.

Now, these last two assets here, Standardize and Sustain, they are to help us to keep all the wins that we racked up from doing those first three assets. We want to make sure that we don't slide backwards. So, set your standard, make it a high one. You might check out something called the “broken window theory” that talks about maintaining standards. Based on the rule, once we have a set standard in place, you'll find that people will follow it. The second thing is, standardize everything. In other words, don't have a different set up in one department versus another one. Make sure your color coding is the same. You've got, you know, all cabinets set up the same way — safety supply is set up the same way, cleaning supply is the same way. If the brain is a pattern seeking mechanism, let's not have different patterns in different places. Let's make it all the same. This is going to make it a lot more consistent. Use the same color coding in every department, set your standards in place, and then when we go to Sustaining, it's going to be much easier to do.

Now, I've talked to a lot of people that seem to think Sustain is the hardest part. It can be, but here's another tip: If you do the others correctly with that benefits focus where people really saw the wins, the benefits, the reduction of frustration, then they're not going to want to slide backwards.

There are two tips I'm going to give right here to help sustainment stick the very first time. The first thing is having check sheets. A book I recommend everyone to read is The Check Sheet Manifesto. Check sheets keep us out of trouble. So have a check sheet for your 5S for every department, where it takes five minutes. So, if you got five employees in one area, they can take turns each day of the week. One person is, you know, on Mondays, it's my turn to do the 5S check sheet. So now I look at the check sheet, and I'm just checking off all the items that might have, like, are all tools put away, trash empty, floor is swept.

I would suggest having areas on this check sheet that represent the five areas, or five sets of 5S + 1. So, the items creep in that shouldn't be there, okay, put them back where they need to go. Have safety items there. And this is really powerful from an OSHA standpoint. Remember, part of what OSHA requires is that you do regular safety inspections. Well, that's on your check sheet. There's evidence right there. We use our check sheets for 5S to get us ISO 18001 safety certified. So, I have items on there, like, you know, is the lighting good, are there slip trip hazards, are hallways blocked, are fire extinguishers blocked, or electrical cabinet spot. Again, have those things that are important to you. So, that's the first step — have that check sheet.

Second step is make sure that management and people in authority roles are looking at it and initialing it, verifying that it's getting done. We know what's important to management because they're overseeing it, looking at it. If you're doing those check sheets or having people doing them and no one's ever coming by and looking at it, verifying it, I guarantee at some point people will stop doing it. If my boss is not looking at something that I have to do, then it must not be very important. So again, once a week, you want to have your lead or supervisor look at it, sign it. Then I would say at least once a month, his boss look at it and sign it, then they can even have notes in there. So it now becomes a communication tool. So again, sustainment is really easy as long as you have those components in place.

Okay, with that, we're going to stop at this moment. And we want to get some feedback from you guys. So, with your 5S + 1 journey. Again, you've got those five steps: Sort, Set to Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain. What we want to get from you is use your computer and tell us where you're at with your Lean journey. I'll give you a minute to, you know, think about it and put it in there. Take where you're at right now. Help us to get a picture of, again, where you're at on there.

Okay, hopefully you've done that.

And the second thing we want to get from you is just to get some interest or get really your feelings on where your interest lies in terms of help with a 5S + 1. So, what are the products, 5S products, you'd be most interested in? Would they be shadow boards, dry erase and communication boards, signs and tags, you know, helping with those elements of automatic recoil, floor markers, tapes and stencils? So again, remember, once you've removed the clutter, then it's all about visuals. Always think of those two sides of that 5S + 1 coin: removing the clutter and then directing behavior with those visuals. So again, that's going to help us to be able to help you.

Okay, while you’re doing that, I'll go ahead and kind of wrap us up here.

Here we have an excellent cheat sheet put together by National Marker Company. And again, I highly recommend that you use tools like this. You want signage throughout your facility, and maybe even give your people cheat sheets and cards to where with time, they memorize these, they understand, and this becomes the new normal for them.

Now, one of the interesting phenomenons I saw with 5S — I've seen this in many locations where we rolled out 5S, and it's stuck. I’ve had people come up and tell me that wow, not only do I enjoy it at work, I took it home. I taught my spouse, and we did 5S in our kitchen, in our garage. That tells me that we had something that was really powerful. If it's spilling over into our personal life, why not? Again, I mentioned all the times I've had to look for car keys, TV remotes. Again, clean and then organize removes frustration. We want people thinking that this is a better normal. We want them to get to this as the high standard of professionalism, and the new normal, and expect this in their work area.

Sort, Set to order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain, and then Safety throughout everything. So, with that, hopefully we gave you some good information, and we'll go ahead and take your questions.

Tiffany: Thank you so much, Bryan. That was great. We do have some questions ready for the audience, or for you rather. We have one from Steve. “What are the most common barriers to implementing 5S + 1 that you've encountered with senior management?”

Bryan: Yeah, really good question because that is the main thing right there. For anything, you've got to have the senior management's backing. Matter of fact if you don't… Interesting phenomenon: There is a dog food/cat food factory where the management was behind 5S and Lean. Everyone implemented it, did a great job with it, then a different — the factory sold and a different team took it over. And since they didn't understand 5S and Lean, they didn't support it, and actually tried to squelch it. But the employees kept it going for over a year on their own and trained management till management bought into it and supported it. So, really you would sell upper management on it the same way you would sell it to everyone else. And that's focusing on those benefits.

I'm telling you, right now, if you don't have 5S in place, then you're wasting money through those eight forms of waste that’s gobbling things up. They don't see it, but it's happening. When we're putting any business model together — I don't care if it's a pizza restaurant or a widget factory — we're designing an operation to make widgets or make pizza, we're going to design waste into it just because we don't know any better. If we don't have a program to root out, remove waste, then it’s going to grow.

Remember, you know, everything in life is changing. It's either going forward, or it's going backwards. So, either you're doing continuous improvement and optimizing, or sliding backwards. Again, clutter, chaos grows. It’s one of the laws of thermodynamics, you know, atrophy. So, that's your best-selling point is, go with those benefits. And if you needed to bring in maybe an expert and do an audit, that might help show them where, you know, hey, in this hour or this time, here's kind of the problems that I see. You might not see it, but day to day you guys are dealing with this stuff. So yeah, focus on the benefits.

Tiffany: Great. Thank you so much. Actually, I have a question here for Patrick from National Marker. What was the most difficult part of your 5S experience?

Patrick: Hi, how are you? I think, for us, the hardest part has been the sustaining part. I agree with Bryan. One thing that we found is kind of fun and helpful is to break the factory floor up into some different sections and have a competition of like a monthly or quarterly competition for a pizza party or just a big award or something like that. So, it keeps people more engaged throughout the year.

Bryan: Patrick, that's fantastic. You gamified it. That is an excellent idea.

Tiffany: Yeah, it sounds great. I have another question. This is from Bryan. “What if more than three trades and respective 5S + 1s have to be coordinated? How can we minimize the time tradeoffs to maximize the cost and benefits?

Bryan: You know, again, a really good question. You're going to find that, that structure that we laid out for you in this webinar. One thing you want to watch is, you know, the different sectors or different traits really doesn't matter as much as don't spread yourself too thin. So, that's where you want to try to avoid that mile-wide, you know, go with that inch wide and a mile deep. But you know, spreading it out, since it's a very simple approach, I think that’s part of the genius of 5S + 1 and Lean. Three characteristics you're always looking for are simple, direct, and engaging, and that layout is very simple and very direct. So, it shouldn't be a problem, you know, trading industries and even different locations and environments. Just stick with getting some early wins, you know, and don't spread yourself too thin with resources.

So, I say one of the main things you need is do you have people that can help coordinate those efforts for each area? You need someone that's at least knowledgeable enough to steer them towards the benefits to get early wins. Otherwise, if they're doing work and not getting the benefits, that's when you start to lose momentum.

Tiffany: Excellent. Another question for Patrick. “With 5S, what results have you seen so far?”

Patrick: Well, we'd really embraced 5S and Lean in general over the past few years. We've become significantly more efficient. We only have a couple of production employees, and revenues are up probably 20 or 30%. So, clearly, we're doing more with less. Typical example was, we were running out of a specific raw material that was stored in a cabinet, and we have too much discussion. We chiseled the hinges and the doors off the cabinet, made it a visual for everybody to see. We put some colored tape behind it or red, yellow and green when we're in stock or when we're running low. And since then we've never run out of that material. So, by making it much more visual, it's much easier for everybody to participate and make sure things run smoothly.

Tiffany: Great. I have a question from Steve. “How easy or difficult is it to utilize 5S + 1 at temporary work sites such as can occur in construction industry?”

Bryan: Actually, I've been involved with some organizations where they had that very scenario, and it's really easier than you think. The funny thing is, at that point, what you want to do is, you want to organize the things that you can. Usually, if you've got construction or landscaping, or something service oriented, they've got trucks that they're using that all their equipment is 5S trucks. Make sure that you have those in good organization and then use check sheets for the field itself. So, your check sheet is going to become your way to organize your work environment. So, again, maybe have an area on the construction site where they're putting their supplies.

And like I said, I've actually worked with a lot of organizations that had that very issue. And I would go out to the field and inspect or audit them, and I was always amazed because if they had that check sheet and a foreman or someone that's trained in 5S, you could walk under their site and tell exactly what was going on. Again, the brain being that pattern seeking mechanism, you could tell where their supplies were, you could tell where the trash was, you know, you could tell the flow of their operation. So again, use the check sheets. The leaders need to be trained at it. The flow of people can be temporary, and it really doesn't matter because the check sheet and the ones that are running it are going to really maintain it for you. And everyone will enjoy the benefit.

Tiffany: Yeah, thanks Bryan. I have another question from Collins. He says, “We are a fairly new company trying to put a system in place. We have a safety policy in place. What would be our next step?”

Bryan: You know, it's still going to go with, from the standpoint of Lean. Again, I don't know how big their operation is, but I would start with still using 5S + 1, going through the steps because no matter what you're going to be implementing for your operation in terms of KPI’s, for safety, or whatever, you still want stability, and 5S is going to surface a lot of those waste for you. Then another tool I maybe suggest I'm looking at is using a value stream map which will also identify a lot of things that are going to keep you from growing in the wrong direction. And it will help you to optimize every step because of how your stream map is going to capture all of your activities, your information flow, and any transformations of products and service. So, that's something you might give some thought too.

Tiffany: Okay, that sounds great. For Patrick, “What advice do you have for anyone starting out?”

Patrick: Well, yeah, I think everybody should start out with a small area, something like just a drill press area, something rather simple. Paint the older equipment, really do a super job doing it. We paint the equipment, we paint the floors, and really make sure that that area is transformed to what looks like a brand new plant. And once that happens, then everybody seems to catch on. they want to be part of it. They're asking for the floor markers, for the trash cans, and the tape for the floor. And, you know, once that happens, the entire factory starts to turn over.

Tiffany: Great. Thank you so much. Calculating performance of different departments and implementing 5S.

Bryan: Okay, part of — well, this is kind of goes back to that value stream map. When you're doing continuous improvement, you're looking at everything from the standpoint of everything is either an activity, a connection, or a flow, they’re moving around. So, for every activity, you identify what are the important factors for that activity. We call these KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). You know, for a restaurant, it’s going to be different than for a hospital, you know, than for a widget factory. But identify those things that are really important to you. I would direct you also to try and use leading indicators, things that employees can control, then those are the things you want to measure or monitor.

When I'm teaching this, I’ll often use a hospital as an example. You know, if you've got someone in ICU, you know, their key performance indicators are their pulse rate, their breathing, their body temperature. So you want to check these on a regular basis. Again, you don't want to be surprised by a problem or sliding backwards and not being aware of it. So, pick KPIs that are significant for that department that people can control. And again, there's something in us where we're all competitive, we want to win. I guess the assumption that all business owners and managers go in with this. Employees want to succeed at what they're doing. So, management just needs to really give them a goal, the KPIs to help hit the goal, then the resources that employees ask for to hit that goal. So, hopefully that helped. Yeah.

Tiffany: Yeah, I think so. I have a question from Matthew. “For step two, when setting things in order, how do you overcome limited space in your work area?”

Patrick, do you have any input on this?

Patrick: Sorry, I didn't realize that was for me. So um, you know, every time we talk through 5S in area, we actually find out that we have way more junk in that area than we thought we did. And the reduction of the items that are in there usually make it make it much more possible for the things that need to be there, you know, to fit in. Going back to Bryan's presentation, things that you only use when you once a week or once a month, you can put carts that can roll in only when you need them, and therefore the items that really create the work end up in the work area and not all the periphery stuff.

Tiffany: Thank you. I have another question from Steve. “In terms of budgeting for the implementation of 5S + 1 program, is there a good way to calculate how much that might cost, example per person or per department?”

Bryan: Yeah, that's a tough question because, again, it depends on the scope and the size of what you're doing. Yeah, the biggest thing is actually just taking the time and doing the training to do it. Again, the tools that you need for automatic recoil, you know, putting down shadow boards or lines on the floor, or stenciling, that stuff is really not that expensive to do. Like Patrick was mentioning, you know, as you progress repainting everything and doing all that, the idea of constantly progressing can get a little bit costly. But again, I've always seen that there's been good payback for it. So yeah, I would say, it just depends on the size and the scope that you're dealing with. But yeah, that's really a tough one. I don’t know. Patrick, have you got something you can sign me with?

Patrick: Yeah, I just, I feel like typically very, very inexpensive, you know, a few rolls of tape, a gallon of paint, and a shadow board, maybe $400 or $500, for an area to go from something looks very old to something that’s basically brand new. So, our experience is that most of the Lean changes are very inexpensive compared to other changes that management wants to do. Way less expensive than, you know, major upgrades and equipment.

I knew a guy that had million-dollar print printing presses and was about to go out and buy a brand new, you know, eight-color KOMORI printing press. And after he did his Lean work, it had so much excess capacity, he actually didn't need to buy the printing press. So, those are the kind of things that come out of this.

Tiffany: Great, thank you. I have a couple of questions here that are asking about the time that it can take to implement 5S + 1, whether it be the training, or how long that you find the systems can be installed for? If you have any advice to offer, on how long that can take.

Bryan: Again, it really depends on the area. But like Patrick’s comment, I’d say it’ll amaze you how quickly you can do a transformation. Really, the first step is explaining the benefits, so people feel comfortable with the transformation. Because again, change scares us. I've even seen people go through those five stages of grief with transformation when management lets them know, hey, we're going to do this. Because all they know is something is going to change.

So, you know, taking the time to give them the information and see the benefits, then as you go through the simple steps, you'll find each one of them really doesn't take that long. I mean, the sorting phase, each one of those you can do relatively quickly. So I, again, emphasize the idea of picking one department and doing it well to where you get early wins. And then you can scope it out.

Part of the idea of Lean is for everything you do, it has that mentality of in your scope of your answering four questions. What's the problem? So, in this case, you know, when to do the 5S. What's the solution? Okay, we're going to implement 5S into an area. Who's going to do it and when is it going to be done? So yeah, got to plan it out because that helps people's comfort level. Now, but again, I think you'll be amazed at how quickly you can do this. Just like Patrick was saying, pick one area and do it right and then go from there.

Patrick: We also, we do it the other way sometimes as well, which is we say we're going to dedicate four hours on Monday morning and four hours on Thursday morning, and how big should the area be? Because right now, that's all we can budget for time. and then we pick an area, and then we go at that area that way.

Bryan: Yeah, that's fantastic. That gives people a large comfort level too because now they know they've got this time to do this. So yeah, that's great.

Tiffany: Great! I have a couple of questions here from Ed asking about how 5S might be deployed on some larger construction facilities such as larger structures or pipelines. Would there be any differences to any other construction sites?

Bryan: With my experience, it’s still going to go the same way. I mean, you still got to, you know, do the 5S with the things that you can't control. Typically, it would be the service vehicles. And then often the industry is going to dictate, say, color coding with pipes and things along this line, depending on what is being transferred through those pipes. But you know, you still want to use that 5S mindset. So again, it's structuring every activity and making it to where any tools and supplies they interact with, they want to minimize the amount of waste, things that they don't need, and, you know, having control of what they want, when they need it. So yeah, it might seem to get a little bit more complicated if you're dealing with bigger areas and, say, large pipelines and things like that, but you're really dealing with the exact same characteristics. So, as you expand it, it really doesn't change that much.

Tiffany: Great! I just have one last question here. Oh, I have another question here rather, about the organization system, 3s, and I'm not too familiar about that. I don't know about you guys, but what makes 5S better than perhaps 3s?

Bryan: I've not heard of 3s. Now, like I’ve mentioned before, I'm just going to throw this out without — you might ask what 3s is. Like I mentioned before, remember, 5S as a structure has been around for a long time. I said there's evidence 16th Century shipbuilding is used as part of the JA Program. So, and this is like one of the hang-ups that people get into with Lean in general, say, trying to stick with the Japanese names or this or that. It doesn't matter. You know, understand the principles by what you're trying to do. This is where value stream maps, again, are so powerful. So, you identify every activity, look for those eight forms of waste. 5S + 1 is, yes, an excellent tool for your environment. So, I don't know what level you'd be trying to skip, but for almost any transformation, you're still going to go through those five steps. I don't care how you jockey him around, you're still going to have to do the Sort, Set order design it, you know, standardize and sustain, and then safety through all of it. So, again, it might be a different terminology, but I'm betting you're still going to go through the same thing.

Tiffany: Alright, sorry about that. Can it be effect… I just have one last question. Can it be effective when you're working in an environment with multiple contractors or with a variety of different trades involved?

Bryan: You betcha. As matter of fact, this is — that's a very environment where you do want that. When you have different people coming in and out, I'll go back to that McDonald's or that Disney World. That's where you need more visuals. Because when you have someone who's not used to an area coming into it, or like landscaping places or always moving around, then we need to be able to control the things we can’t control. So, the service trucks, you know, check sheets, using everything we can to put visuals in place to where is people are changing, you know, different contractors, you know, different individuals, they can see that pattern. They have visuals to answer their questions, so they know how to interact with the environment, where tools, supplies and information are. So yeah, actually, I'd say it’s more important with an environment like that.

Tiffany: Great. Thank you so much. That is it for the Q&A. We'd like to thank everyone for attending today's webinar. Bryan and Patrick, thank you so much for the presentation and answering our questions. I'd like to thank National Marker Company and Safety Network for putting today's webinar on.

And just a reminder, we will be sending out a link to the recording and the presentation slides in a few days. Thanks again. Take care and stay safe!