Lean – Back to the Basics

A few weeks ago, I had the honor and privilege to speak to the founders of four manufacturing startup companies as part of the Vogt Awards program.  The topic was near and dear to my heart – Lean Manufacturing.  Continue reading


What If We Ran Our Organizations Like Sports Teams?

One of the interesting things I always notice as we approach big games, like the recent Super Bore, is that business writers and observers tend to skew their musings toward sport, or the business of sport (maybe that’s just a way for them to justify their employer paying for a trip to the game??).

Anyway, not being one to miss the boat, I began to think – what if an organization was run like a sports team?  Continue reading

An Overly Simplistic View of PI

Process Identification -> Process Improvement -> Performance Improvement -> Performance Excellence -> Operational Excellence

The journey of Continuous Improvement is long, arduous, and best of all, never-ending.  One could say that is the whole nature of the word “continuous”.  This road does, however, have several checkpoints.  With that said, here we’ll provide an overview of the entire journey, but spend more time at the beginning – because that’s where it all starts!

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Problem Solving or Thinking Process?

I’ve been spending some time lately working on improving our ability to solve problems, specifically developing a more structured problem solving method, including root cause analysis. Historically we have used problem solving and root cause analysis to, well, solve problems. But one thing we need to realize is that it can also be used to create opportunities. Here’s an example: Continue reading

Still Missing the Point of Lean

Saw a headline for an article the other day in a local Medical News journal espousing the benefits of Lean Management.  Needless to say, I was excited to see Lean get some press in the local medical community which has been slow to implement the tenants of Lean Thinking.  That is, until I started reading the article… Continue reading