Ray Howcroft, Lean Enterprise manager at Ball Beverage Packaging Europe, is still basking in the sheer delight of lifting the most coveted prize in lean – with some help from The Manufacturing Institute.
Ball’s Naro Fominsk site just outside Moscow makes Ends for Beverage Can production and was highly praised for creating an employee culture which should be an “inspiration” to other companies.
Says Ray: “Naro Fominsk was already one of our top sites and they learned so much following the Shingo journey.
“We had worked with The Manufacturing Institute’s Peter Sussex before and we totally trusted him and liked his style. He’s very easy to get on with and his Shingo knowledge is very good. He knows what he is talking about.
“We asked him to come in and assess the site and tell us honestly what was good and what was bad.
“We felt we knew where the gaps were but we needed outside help in verifying them.
“Peter’s feedback confirmed our concerns about the non-manufacturing areas and we introduced a fast track programme to improve them. It could have let us down during the Shingo Assessment had this not be identified and corrected.”
The Shingo assessors visited the site and two weeks later Ray got a call to tell him that they had won the top Shingo Prize.
“I was gobsmacked,” says Ray. “They were totally blown away by our shop floor engagement. I was hoping for a silver but to get the gold at the first try was amazing.
“At the award ceremony the plant manager Sergey was waving the trophy around like the World Cup. The whole team is so very proud.
“Six out of our 24 sites are currently active with Shingo but we’ll do it at the right pace and for the right reasons. It’s not just for the medal, it’s about the learning and the value added that Shingo brings. “
“We had worked with The Manufacturing Institute’s Peter Sussex before and we totally trusted him and liked his style. He’s very easy to get on with and his Shingo knowledge is very good. He knows what he is talking about.”
Ray Howcroft, Lean Enterprise manager at Ball Beverage Packaging Europe.
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