Let’s talk dishwashers for a bit. If you’ve ever (re)designed your kitchen, you know there’s an overwhelmingly huge amount of them out there. So, how do you separate the wheat from the chaff? And how on earth does this relate to Visual Management?

Two types of dishwashers: which one’s better?

What information would you prefer to see when the dishwasher rumbles on? It’s a question manufacturers have racked their brains over. Their thinking has resulted in two main types of dishwashers: those with a status indicator and those with an information indicator. Which one is better?

The status indicator is straightforward: when the red light turns off, you can take the dishes out of the machine. At a single glance, you know what’s up. The downside: if you have guests in the dining room, you don’t know when it’s safe to open the dishwasher and take out a few plates. The information indicator will tell you that – plus a bunch of other things. The latter can be confusing. Like we shared before, filtering is paramount, and the information indicator makes you work a lot harder in this regard.

How to share the right information

So, what’s the takeaway from all this? Simple: the information you need depends on the situation. Let’s take that statement one step further: the situation is determined by the people involved. When applied to Visual Management, this means the decisive factor should always be the recipient of information – or, the employee who needs to work with the data you share. When organizing our business workshops, we ask employees what they need to know to make independent decisions on the work floor. Only then, we can ensure the right information is shown to the right people in the right place.

However, organizations often still fail to go about Visual Management in this way. A top-down approach is usually favored over a bottom-up one. Want to know more about this pitfall (and how to avoid it)? Read our next blog!

Ready to explore your Visual Management opportunities? Please don’t hesitate to contact us. We’d be happy to perform a Quick Scan and discuss your information sharing strategy.