Carronade The Yankee Sailor Carronade

The Sea is a choosy mistress. She takes the men that come to her and weighs them and measures them. The ones she adores, she keeps; the ones she hates, she destroys. The rest she casts back to land. I count myself among the adored, for I am Her willing Captive.

I've relocated to a new Yankee Sailor.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

SECNAV Applauds Lean Savings

First, some bits from the story:

Secretary of the Navy Donald C. Winter visited Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY) Feb. 15 and got a firsthand look at progress on two of the shipyard’s most important initiatives, lean savings and improving safety.
“We are beginning to see pockets of unprompted actions being taken by members of our workforce at NNSY, resulting in cost savings on the job site,” said Mike Zydron, NNSY’s Process Improvement director. He then cited the increasing number of NAVSEA Lean Six Sigma College alumni being deployed at NNSY as Black Belts and Green Belts now trained in facilitating effective process improvements.
“We’ve had 35 Rapid Improvement Events in the past year-and-a-half, and we have plenty more to do,” Jack Harris, mechanical group superintendent and Lean champion said.

This Six Sigma/Lean thing has become a big deal in the Navy lately. I've got a good friend that set aside his dolphins to go work for GE about a decade ago and was one of their first blackbelts. Since then he's become quite a critic of Six Sigma, and GE in general hasn't seen the payoff they had hoped to. Now, said friend, knowing the Navy thought that we could probably see significant benefits because of the tremendous ineffiencies in our system, but as this article points out, Six Sigma's not a cure-all. Oh, and he also said the Navy would need to stick with it past the 18-24 month point - when a new decision-maker is looking to leave his mark on things and has "a better idea."