This past weekend I made a quick visit to see my parents. It was my mom’s birthday and a great opportunity to share some time with my ailing father. And there was a glimpse of some domestic lean

I was grilling steak and grabbed a knife to check the center. Yes, I know real cooks don’t do that. I am not a real cook.

Anyway, as I picked up the knife by the handle, there was something poking my hand. It was a twist tie!

I gave my mother an incredulous look. She explained.

Seems my father tends to put the wood handled knives in the dishwasher. High temp water bath and wood – not a good combination. So, my mother slapped a twist tie on the knife to remind him that it is not a candidate for the dishwasher (unless he’s the dishwasher).

Now, I usually prefer a more self-explaining control, but the gemba-based population within my folks’ house is pretty small. Overall, inventive and a little bizarre.

Visual and tactile control – zero dollars. Time with my folks – priceless.

Related posts: Effective Visual Controls Are Self-Explaining, Kaizen in the Laundry Room…and My Domestic Shortcomings