May 7, 2006

Lean Directions en Espanol

Five of the ten Shingo Prizes went to companies in Mexico. Several of the people they sent to receive the prize were not fluent in English. It was a wake-up call for me. "Lean Directions" has to include Spanish-language articles. I've e-mailed a few folks I found by Googling Spanish-language websites about lean and using the "translate this page" tool.

Machine translation of "lean manufacturing" is at first baffling, and then hilarious. Mostly it appears as "he reads." The correct term seems to be manufactura ajustado. I kinda like that - adjusted manufacturing.

On Piquer0's advice, I thought about people whose first language was Spanish who would write in Spanish. Ordinarily, I'd be conditioned to find something in English and get it translated.

My limitation is not speaking or reading Spanish. Like most Americans, I am appallingly monolingual. That means I need a subject matter expert to tell me if an article is worth publishing and an editor to make it read well. I've got a couple of people who've said they would help. The people I've asked have said that even one article in Spanish would be helpful. It would allow the bilingual readers to give their folks stuff to read.

Enrique Mora, a bilingual TPM guy now working for the California Manufacturing Technology Center (or something like that adding up to CMTC), has offered to submit articles in both English and Spanish. He'll let me edit in English and then edit the Spanish himself, which might work out pretty well.

If any of my blog-readers are interested, let me know. I can imagine a "Direcciones a Manufactura Ajustado" in the future. Guess I'd better get some of those quick CD courses on Spanish if I'm going to be able to be its editor.

"Lean Directions" is a labor of love. It's my baby and I don't want to ever give it up to anyone. I kept at it through years of obscurity and am so deeply gratified that it has achieved some level of recognition in the lean world. Now I want it to live up to ever-higher expectations. If I can't be an accomplished practitioner, I want to be a good onlooker. Someday I'll even be a good observer. Anytime you want to tell me what you need as a reader, I'll listen.

2 comments:

Bill Waddell said...

Hola Karen,

Estaré alegre ayudar hacia fuera con cualquier traducción Española que usted necesite.

Karen Wilhelm said...

Bill,

You're a prince.

Karen

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