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Foreign exchange (FX) is a growing concern for more than 50 percent of companies around the globe. That’s why an increasing number of businesses are now incorporating process improvement practices—such as Lean, Six Sigma, and kaizen—into their financial risk management processes.

These methodologies, now widely used in all kinds of businesses, were originally used by manufacturers, most notably Toyota. The Toyota Production System (TPS) popularized the idea of taking a strategic approach to managing manufacturing operations with the goal of saving time and money. A flow of production based on Henry Ford’s assembly line, the TPS model helped Toyota make major strides in productivity and propelled the company into the global market. Other corporations began to follow suit and apply the principles to their own businesses. Ultimately, the TPS philosophies influenced development of the modern principles of Six Sigma and Lean production.

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