About a year ago John Tooley introduced me to Training Within Industry (TWI) and lean. 


We've been using TWI Job Instruction (JI) for training our home counselors and technicians and have adopted those methods for our homeowner education.

Over 60% of our staff at CEE has gone thru JI training. Enterprise, Minnesota, our state Manufacturing Extension Partner (MEP), provided the training for us. Other states should have similar resources.

We have also gone thru lean training and have begun the process of applying lean approaches to our processes.

Anybody else have experience with this?

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Hi Lester CHEN


Can you tell me more about learning about LEAN/TWI and WX

is there a ciriculum developed for installation part of WX?

What processes have you manged to make more LEAN.

What does CEE stand for ?


This sounds very exciting I hope folks will react to your post 



Jan E. Gravemaker

Seattle WA


Hi, Jan,


I know that John Tooley is a strong adherent to TWI and that this surely was an influence in the development of the wx guidelines that DOE recently published. This would be manifested in the form of Job Breakdown Sheets for training.


In our residential program we've created Job Breakdown Sheets for training of our counselors and technicians who perform our home visits as well as for our administrative staff for our workshops and record keeping. All of our staff has had training in lean methods and we try to foster a culture of continuous improvement. We've done some value stream mapping and undertaken a few kaizen activities. It is still very much an ongoing process though since the program is new and we're learning as we implement. As a result, defining what we would call Standard Work can be a moving target as we learn from experience.


If you are interested in lean, I would suggest taking training in TWI Job Methods, Toyota problem solving method (A3 reports), value stream mapping and kaizen events. These are all very useful tools


btw CEE stands for Center for Energy and Environment. We're a not-for-profit in Minneapolis with over 30 years of experience in the field. http://www.mncee.org


Thanks for your reply and interest.


Lester S. Shen

Minneapolis, MN



Thanks for your reply,

Yes a couple of years back John Tooley, made me aware how Energy Star NW was bringing

out these 8.5 X 11 visual go-no go (poke-yoke) sheets error proofing and how these tied in to

QA by the workers, while the job was done.

I had earlier experience in my college (MBA in sustainabilty) with the books on Toyota (LEAN)

production system by,  Jeffrey Liker CS and was really taken by the philosophy of a constantly

learning and improving organization, where management and line workers together figure out

what the best way is, to do the work.

Just came back from an exam in cold IOWA, for my LEAN bronze (lowest level) certification

as a LEAN professional.

Standard work is a real important starting point because it provides the stable basis to compare

the outcomes of KAIZEN improvements with, and establish through a PDCA cycle if an

"improvement" is really making things operate better, and than becomes the new standard,

or if the old standard is still the way to go.

Standard work is the basis fro training as well, so it is really a key stone  both in TWI and LEAN.

What has CEE put in place so far?

Have you worked on any office processes?

Audits or work orders for field work ? 

I really believe  this TWI?LEAN movement has the possibility in it, to lift this industry into

a much higher level of professionalism and maturity.

After all energy conservation/efficiency is the cheapest, least polluting form of energy production

available, and has a pretty high employment potential 

Thanks for sharing.



Kind Regards

Jan E Gravemaker




I'd love to hear your suggestions and advice on how to implement lean. I wish that I could say that we had explicitly implemented lean process but it is more like an underlying influence. We have more explicitly adopted TWI tools for both our home visit and office procedures. What is driving our efforts at continuous improvement has been setting some clear, measurable goals. We've defined goals for cycle times (workshop length, home visit length, # of home visits per day per crew). We do job shadowing (gemba walk) on a regular basis. We have program goals for number of visits and upgrades and that has served as a strong motivator. We have our home visit down to an hour and a half. Our efforts with lean has helped us to get to that point. As we continue to adapt the program to get better results, we have to adapt and improve our audit procedures. So, I guess that I would say that standard work and measurable results are really important for the lean process. Our experience is that this has been lacking in the past.



Lester, I have developed a curriculum for green building, weatherization, auditing and green jobs. A major component of the curriculum if OTJ training and hands on activities. You can check it out at www.organicthink.com.


Rob Moody

Organic Think Inc


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