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Sustaining a lean ideology

Bhasin, Saanjay and Found, Pauline ORCID: 2021. Sustaining a lean ideology. Management Decision 59 (3) 10.1108/MD-09-2019-1254

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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore the interface between Lean strategy and organisational transformation, by scrutinising the literature on why Lean strategies fail to be implemented and/or sustained. Design/methodology/approach As a conceptual and research paper it develops a hypothesis. It encompasses philosophical discussions and comparative studies of others' work and Lean thinking alongside its links to the principles, ideology, philosophy and the underpinning values. The search involved a total of 1,931 articles spanning across 75 different journals. The content analysis approach suggested by Mayring (2004) was selected. Findings Successfully implementing Lean is more complex than often recognized within literature and the alignment between strategy and organisational transformation is repeatedly not undertaken. The investigation indicates policy makers need to view Lean as an ideology and not simply another process. Research limitations/implications This paper addresses the inaccurate representation which exists of the concept of Lean as a strategy. Whilst a major evolution has occurred comprising the inputs 2 perceived as imperative for Lean success, a translucent empathy of its philosophy alongside an acknowledgement of the magnitude of the change and transformation necessary has been comparatively perplexing. This paper has implications for academic scholars of strategy and organisational change as well as for practitioners seeking to implement organisational change. Originality/value Empirical evidence suggests that most Lean strategies struggle. Customers are becoming more demanding, markets are becoming more customised, and product life-cycles getting shorter are dictating that Lean needs to be embraced as an ideology.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Publisher: Emerald
ISSN: 0025-1747
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 23 June 2020
Date of Acceptance: 30 April 2020
Last Modified: 09 Nov 2022 15:27

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