Kanban, the Japanese word for “visual signal”, is a process improvement methodology used since the 1940s to foster clear communication of what work needs to be done and when.
Some proven benefits of Kanban are not holding more stock than you need (more space, less clutter, no items expiring), cutting expenses (not buying more than you need), and having items available when you need to use them.
Kanban can be used in many facets of your life. Today, let’s focus on kitchen replenishment systems (aka. how not to run out of needed ingredients while not keeping a warehouse in your basement):
- Set a place for your back-stock (aka. pantry);
- Organize your products by category and give each category a “home” (a designated space such as a box, a drawer…);
- Set each “home” with the amount of product you would use on a regular cycle (your regular cycle is the amount of time between your shopping/replenishment trips);
- Now, set the visual cue and the replenishment trigger (this doesn’t need to be fancy, just work, without fail, for you and your family!).