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Journal cover: Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction

Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction

ISSN: 1366-4387

Online from: 2005

Subject Area: Built Environment

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Applying lean thinking in commercial management

Document Information:
Title:Applying lean thinking in commercial management
Author(s):Daria Zimina, (Civil and Engineering Department, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK), Christine L. Pasquire, (School of Architecture, Design and Built Environment, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK)
Citation:Daria Zimina, Christine L. Pasquire, (2011) "Applying lean thinking in commercial management", Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction, Vol. 16 Iss: 1, pp.64 - 72
Keywords:Construction industry, Management strategy
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/13664381111116098 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to develop two hypotheses explaining the role of commercial management in the lean business model: lean construction is a viable choice of commercial strategy; and lean commercial management is an integral part of lean construction system subordinate to the project delivery. This is completed as a part of conceptualisation of the lean commercial management discipline in construction on the abstract level and followed by deriving its main principles.

Design/methodology/approach – The research is based on the direct observation of the companies pursuing lean strategy in construction as well as of those following non-lean business models, review of case studies and literature.

Findings – Traditional commercial arrangements do not comply with the lean construction requirements and may hamper the exploration of its full potential. Lean commercial management differs in the way that its primary role is to support the production process thus it is subordinated to it.

Research limitations/implications – This research would benefit from links with the existent field of social and economic studies where deeper reasoning to substantiate the theory might be found. Experiments with lean companies in the construction sector are also necessary for theory validation.

Practical implications – The approach offered in this paper vectors the way of dealing with the commercial decisions within lean enterprise. This potentially can further enhance benefits from lean construction.

Originality/value – The paper builds upon the related research and papers, further advancing the topic of lean construction.

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