Hi, and many thanks for your question. I agree we are experiencing a difficult jobs market, not least because of the huge impact of Digital Transformation, which will only increase the challenges. Some people predict we’re entering another industrial revolution, and I tend to agree.
Business improvement models are often introduced at difficult times, and this is why they sometimes become associated with job losses. However Lean, when done properly, is all about doing more with less. It links high level business objectives to operational activities through all levels of the organisation. This ensures all activity is streamlined, and there is no waste in the system. Meaningful data, evidence and KPIs are introduced to verify that performance is as good as it can be. . Problem solving and visual management are tools to generate further improvement. In service organisations, there is a real focus on people, empowerment, and training which encourages everyone to pull in the same direction, and support business objectives.
Lean was introduced in the mid-nineties by Womack & Jones, and stems from the approaches introduced by the Japanese and Americans. As someone who has worked in every reinvention of continuous improvement over 35 years, I too was a little cynical about Lean! However it has been fantastic for me, it’s helped me apply ‘simple science’ to my approach, both to make the right improvements, and more importantly to demonstrate the benefits and give people confidence to spread the word and spread the skills. See here for some examples of the benefits I’ve helped people identify. https://nottinghammanagement.co.uk/our-services/