Virginia Cooperative Extension, in conjunction with the Department of Wood Science and Forest Products and the Sloan Foundation Forest Industry Center in Virginia Tech's College of Natural Resources, announces a workshop entitled "Lean Thinking" to be held in four locations across Virginia this spring.

This workshop is open to anyone in business or manufacturing and is designed to help Virginia companies be globally competitive.

“Lean thinking” is simply defined as a method of doing more with less in any business function. World-class companies have achieved significant cost savings, quality improvements, lead-time reductions, and profitability increases by employing lean thinking throughout their organizations. Lean thinking offers benefits for any kind and size of business, administration, or non-profit organization.

The workshop will be held at four locations in Virginia between March and May:

  • March 24 at the Virginia Cooperative Extension Office in Harrisonburg, Va.;
  • April 2 at the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon, Va.;
  • May 7 at the Hampton Roads Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Virginia Beach, Va.; and
  • May 14 at the Regional Center for Advanced Technology and Training (RCATT) at Danville Community College in Danville, Va.

The program will be conducted by Earl Kline and Urs Buehlmann of the wood science department at Virginia Tech.

The “Lean Thinking” workshop will introduce business owners, managers, administrators, supervisors, and entrepreneurs to the principles and benefits of lean thinking. Using hands-on simulation, participants will experience the improvements possible through using a common sense approach when organizing, scheduling, and operating business functions. Participants will also gain a basic understanding of lean thinking and will be guided to the next steps in assessing opportunities for businesses in implementing lean principles into their operations.

For more information, visit the workshop’s webpage or contact Urs Buehlmann, Virginia Cooperative Extension and Department of Wood Science and Forest Products in the College of Natural Resources, at (540) 231-9759.