Book Talk: Making the Numbers Count

When you think of a lean change agent within a company, do you think of someone in operations? Perhaps an engineer? Maybe you should think of an accountant.

In Making the Numbers Count, Second Edition: The Accountant as Change Agent on the World-Class Team, author Brian Maskell clarifies methods for innovative, proactive management accounting and presents techniques for simplifying accounting systems so that they serve production, marketing, and engineering sectors with equal efficiency.

Maskell, who is also the co-author of Practical Lean Accounting: A Proven System for Measuring and Managing the Lean Enterprise, sounds a call to arms for accountants and controllers at manufacturers pursuing lean transformations.

The book details such methods as value stream costing, VAM, performance measurement, concurrent engineering, target costing, value engineering, and life cycle costing.

A truly lean company has all departments involved in its initiatives, from the shop floor to the back office. Appropriate and accurate financial metrics are critical to that effort, so financial people should absolutely be part of the lean leadership. Maskell’s book can help bring that about.

Do you have a question or comment about a book(s) that you would like addressed in Book Talk? Email me directly at Ralph.bernstein@taylorandfrancis.com.

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