BLOG: "Start Your Lean Journey!" at the VRCA Construction Leadership Forum

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by JOC Digital Media

Serge Massicotte of the Lean Construction Institute – Canada spoke at the Vancouver Regional Construction Association's Construction Leadership Forum in Whistler, B.C. on May 6.
BLOG: "Start Your Lean Journey!" at the VRCA Construction Leadership Forum

Massicotte began by explaining the LCI-Canada is a special committee of the Canadian Construction Association, and is a diverse volunteer group of owner representatives, designers, constructors and industry suppliers, established in 2015.

"We have a bit of a broken industry," Massicotte said, starting with very poor productivity in construction. Even with more technology, "we aren't as productive as we should be."

Lean is five principles, he said, all based upon trust.

  • Defining value
  • Mapping the value stream
  • Creating flow
  • Establishing pull
  • The pursuit of perfection

Lean began in the automotive industry with the advent of the assembly line, and was fine-tuned by Japanese auto manufacturers.

Lean Project Delivery is a highly collaborative process based on trust, respect and continuous learning, he said. This creates value through waste reduction and creates reliable workflows through better planning.

Lean is sometimes used in Integrated Project Delivery, but they are not the same thing, Massicotte cautioned. He said Lean can be used in IPD but also can be applied to other areas.

Waste, Massicotte said, can be defects, overproduction, waiting, non-utilized talent, transportation, inventory, motion and extra processing.

The "Big Room" is a lean tool where every trade in a team works collaboratively and uses sticky notes on a large board to plan out a project and iron out conflict ahead of time. Tasks are also scheduled on a "push" basis, with a granular level of detail.

"The people in the room make commitments to each other, and because of peer pressure, those commitments are kept," Massicotte said.

LCI-Canada's goal, Massicotte said, is to deliver education and training, challenge conventional thinking, and create industry awareness.

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