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Reading Kevin Meyer’s newest article over at Emerging Excellence, contemplating lean over a cup of crappy coffee at work, and what is he writing about?

Coffee.  and Lean.  and how he relates using a Keurig to make his coffee-making leaner.

I agree with his concept that making a cup of coffee the traditional pot at a time with an old-school drip maker is wasteful (makes too much inventory for demand).

That’s if your demand isn’t there.  Problem is, I can EASILY down a pot of coffee in the morning.

I like his reasoning that the Keurig is handy in that it makes a single serving of coffee (in a bunch of tasty options), and costs less than a tall at Starbucks.

Only problem I see with that reasoning is that a lot of people don’t usually get a regular cup o’ joe at Starbucks – they usually opt for one of their “Cadillac” drinks, like a latte or cappuccino.  So, kind of different products.

There’s also the waste aspect.  Keurig owners usually make their coffee using one of the disposable cups – which produces physical waste – a no-no for lean thinking.

Meyer explained – in the spirited comments that accompanied his article – that he compared the cup waste with a Starbucks cup and lid, and he certainly has a point there, but I am also comparing it with a pot.

This is obviously kind of nitpicking of Meyer’s article.

Frankly, I think he hit a home run with this comparison, and he might even have the groundwork for a successful lean simulation, a la Bruce Hamilton’s very successful DVD, Toast Kaizen.

> To read the article, “The Lean Value of Coffee,” click here.

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