29 March 2012
Jargon could hinder improvement programmes
Cutting down on unnecessary jargon could help manufacturers win workforce support for continuous improvement, the Best Factory Awards heard.
A delegate queried manufacturing industry lingo when English translations could be more inclusive, quoting the use of the Japonic term "muda" instead of simply "waste".
Carefusion's mechanical engineering manager Chris Haw explained that certain terminologies may be appropriate within one site but "you'll need to ease the language for other people to understand".
He backed common terms such as 5S and kaizen as "everyone in this conference and other companies knows what I'm talking about".
The panel, consisting of Haw, Carefusion's Robert Turnbull and Arla Foods' Mick Craig, agreed there was a need for "balance" in workplace language. However, the general consensus was that certain terms are accepted throughout the manufacturing industry and therefore may connect with the workforce.
But Craig warned: "If you start using certain terminology you switch people off. You need to keep it simple."
Arla Foods UK plc
Cranfield School of Management
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