Lean Blog Interviews - Healthcare, Manufacturing, Business, and Leadership

In this series, started in 2006, Mark Graban interviews leaders, practitioners, innovators, and legends in the ”Lean community.” Topics include Lean in manufacturing, healthcare, startups, and other settings. Special emphasis is given to leadership and management system concepts, including the Toyota Production System and related methods. But, we don‘t talk about ”Lean Six Sigma” much around here, if that‘s of interest to you... if you agree that Lean is more than ”just a bunch of tools in the improvement toolbox,” then this is the place for you. Visit the blog at www.leanblog.org. For feedback, email mark@leanblog.org. All past episodes, with show notes and more, can be found at www.leancast.org.

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Episodes

7 days ago

Episode page: https://leanblog.org/447 My guest for Episode #447 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Lauren Hisey. Lauren is a Continuous Business Process Improvement consultant, coach, trainer, and speaker. She specializes in helping business owners and leaders from mid-size organizations uncover and solve their business problems with Continuous Business Process Improvement (Lean, Six Sigma, etc.). She helps your business and organization become simpler… faster… BETTER. Today, we discuss topics and questions including: Why is it important not to jump to solutions with technology (Robotic Process Automation, AI, Machine Learning, or the new Hyper automation)? What is RPA? What do you mean by “digital transformation”? Bridging the gap – people, process, and technology Don't automate a bad process Why should you start with Value Stream mapping and then process mapping the current state and future state? VSM vs. process maps? Differences? Current state observation vs. future state creation? Virtual suggestion box situation – technology adoption? Virtual Gemba walks? Why are Gemba walks so important with understanding the current state and then the future state? Putting two things together — Lean transformation and digital transformation? The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Tuesday Apr 26, 2022

Partner with Svakarma Advisory, LLP, based in Mumbai India.  Episode page: https://leanblog.org/446  My guest for Episode #446 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Sumitra Vig. She is a partner with her advisory firm Svakarma Advisory, LLP, based in Mumbai India.  She is a customer experience specialist, an ASQ (American Society for Quality) Certified Manager of Quality & Organizational Excellence, and a master trainer & retail banker with years of hands-on international experience in Asia, Europe, Middle East, and Africa.  Sumitra has designed & conducted successful training programs, mentored employees & created an impact across continents Today, we discuss topics and questions including: How did you get introduced to Quality? First time right / first time quality from a customer lens — What is this? Does this mean “no mistakes”? What do we learn from mistakes? Does “first time right” put too much pressure on people? How can we design the product or service in a way that ALLOWS first time right? Design thinking — what does the customer really want? Measures — Problems vs reported problems — how to handle unreported problems? Customer is king? The employee is really king to then deliver a transformational experience?? The 5 Toyota Precepts The book Atomic Habits Women in Lean – Our Table group on LinkedIn Has a master class available online on First Time Right Working with a foundation – mobile hospital for villages, remote Himalaya The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Wednesday Apr 13, 2022

Consultant and author of "The Lean Innovation Cycle" Episode page: https://leanblog.org/445 My guest for Episode #445 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Michael Parent. He is the Managing Director of Michael Parent Consulting Services and a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt with AAA Auto Club Group in Michigan. He has written a new book titled The Lean Innovation Cycle: A Multi-Disciplinary Framework for Designing Value with Lean and Human-Centered Design.  Today, we're going to take a dive deep into topics that augment both the Lean and Human Centered Design frameworks. Today, we discuss topics and questions including: How about an Operational Definition: What is Human Centered Design? Tools — but more than the tools Design something… empathize with the end user “Transparency is a good thing” Design thinking (prototyping?) vs. human-centered design?? Observing people vs. asking them about needs as customers? Converging toward a design? What made you interested in exploring Human Centered Design?  What value does Human Centered Design offer for Lean, Six Sigma, and continuous improvement? Methodology, being an experimentalist Customer journey vs. VSM? Or Customer Journey VSM hybrid? What is the Kano model? The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Tuesday Mar 29, 2022

Episode page: https://www.leanblog.org/444 My guest for Episode #444 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Michele Smith. She is CEO and an Executive Coach with her firm Better Possibilities, LLC. Michele is the former director for the Sutter Improvement System at Sutter Health. She is a Catalysis faculty member and she is is leading a workshop June 7th at the Lean Healthcare Transformation Summit called Winning the People Side of Transformation in Salt Lake City. The Summit is being held June 6 to 9 (with the main days being the 8th and 9th). I hope to see you at the Summit. Michele is a dedicated Executive/Leadership Coach with extensive experience coaching individuals across all levels of the organization. She has broad experience as a designated leader and change management consultant, with expertise in team building, leadership development, and facilitation/coaching of leadership to arrive at an organizational strategy with aligned goals, solutions, and ultimately culture change. Today, we discuss topics and questions including: Tell us a bit about Lean at Sutter — the Sutter Improvement System A management system? A roadmap vs. GPS? Wanting an “organization of problem solvers” – how do we define problem solving? How to help shift from fire fighting and workarounds to problem solving to root? Short-term countermeasures vs long-term countermeasures  Management behaviors that lead to the continuous improvement culture? “Leaders to let go of control” Helping leaders through this via change management methods? Motivations to change?   What is ADKAR? Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability, Reinforcement Ah-has — Change management vs. “just change”  Shoehorning change (communication to the masses) in at the end of an improvement event? Bringing the broader team along — keeping them informed, getting their input before and during the event, not just after? Leaders going through their ADKAR process and then how do you help others go through it??? The important of joy / happiness in accepting change?? Secret sauce – “The Happiness Advantage”

Tuesday Mar 15, 2022

My guest for Episode #443 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Dr. Nicole Tschierske, a scientist and positive psychology coach who helps experts and teams in STEM do better work. Nicole works with her clients to improve their collaboration and communication skills so their work gets the momentum and recognition it deserves. She also helps construct ways of working that reduce stress, increase motivation and engagement, and deliver results. Nicole lives in Hamburg, Germany, holds a PhD in chemistry and is trained in coaching, positive psychology, change management, and advanced problem-solving. When she's not buried in research papers and books you can find her taking long hikes in the German countryside or mesmerised by Mary Poppins on the screen. Her new podcast is called “Better Work” and I had the honor of being her first guest! Today, we discuss topics and questions including: How and where were you first introduced to Lean? Why she was burned out in a product research team Moved from science to supply chain — they were starting with Lean  Why was this important to you? Was was energizing about this? The collaborative, engaging approach of Lean Workshops? Kaizen events (and then into science areas, finance) As a scientist likes an approach that's “rigorous not rigid” Avoid moving too fast, avoid jumping to solutions, not jumping to causes “When ‘is' deviates from the ‘should' What does Lean have to do with stress and burnout prevention? Physical, cognitive, emotional demands on people Getting to the root causes of stress vs countermeasures? Supply chain impact and social support with war going on? Tell us about some Deep-dive process improvements How does Lean apply to Roles & Responsibilities and partnerships? The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Tuesday Mar 01, 2022

Episode Page: https://www.leanblog.org/442 My guest for Episode #442 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Crystal Davis, the Founder, CEO & Principal Lean Practitioner at her firm, The Lean Coach, Inc. She was previously a guest in Episode 363 of the series, at the start of the pandemic. Crystal Davis is an experienced business management consultant with twenty years of experience in the design, development, and implementation of Lean Business System solutions. She has extensive domestic and international expertise in the design and implementation of solutions for automotive and healthcare manufacturing, and consumer packaged industries.  Her podcast is “Lead Lean with Crystal Y. Davis“ Today, we discuss topics and questions including: Reflections back on Covid times, in general? How do we move from crisis mode, to survival mode, to recovery mode? How long was the crisis mode? CPG supply chains — hoarding Why do we need courageous leadership during these challenging times? Courageous to do something everyone else isn't doing  Eric Dickson – UMass Memorial Health, link to latest episode Principles — Toyota vs GM during this current shutdown Principles and values are scaleable Principles vs. biz decisions Focused on honing in on what it takes for Leaders to make a shift with all of these supply chain challenges? What leadership characteristics are needed? How do you define a “Lean Business System”? People, process, and infrastructure and how that works together Using the Socratic method? People sometimes get annoyed by this? The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Saturday Feb 26, 2022

This bonus episode is a cross posting of Episode 137 of "My Favorite Mistake" with author Daniel H. Pink. Show notes and more: https://www.markgraban.com/author-dan-pink-on-the-mistake-of-not-having-a-mentor-and-the-power-of-regret/ 

Tuesday Feb 22, 2022

Episode page: https://www.leanblog.org/441  My guest for Episode #441 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is John Dues, an accomplished education systems leader and improvement science scholar-practitioner with more than two decades of experience in the sector.  He is the Chief Learning Officer of the United Schools Network (USN) where he directs the network's Continual Improvement Fellowship and serves as an improvement advisor.  He draws heavily on the work of W. Edwards Deming and his System of Profound Knowledge (SoPK) to equip him with the theory and statistical tools by which to perform this role.  Under John's leadership, USN schools have regularly been among the state and nation's highest performing urban schools. In 2013, John was recognized as the Ohio School Leader of the Year by the Ohio Alliance for Public Charter Schools.  John graduated with Honors from Miami (OH) University, holds a Master of Education degree from the University of Cincinnati, and is an alumnus of Teach For America He is currently continuing his education through the Improvement Advisor program at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in Boston, Massachusetts.  John is the author of a free eBook, Rethinking Improvement. Today, we discuss topics and questions including: “System” – design and then improvement? Voice of the Customer – who is the “customer” for education? Or customers? Where did you first learn about continuous / continual improvement practices and principles? Book Learning to Improve Carnegie Foundation — “improvement science“ Factors out of your control including poverty, home life instability? Focusing on what you can control? Learning from IHI? Deming? Initially turned off by Deming? – hard to understand? What changed in March 2020? Applicability into education? Things Deming said specifically about education? Alfie Kohn, episode #57 Don Wheeler, also using my book Measures of Success Use of Process Behavior Charts What is “engagement” for remote learning? in education? Signal vs. noise The trouble with arbitrary targets? The role of “the system” on performance? Under appreciation of systems thinking? What's the impact of spending on individual “professional development”? Theory of knowledge – why do we do the things we do? So engrained we don't question them?  The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Wednesday Feb 16, 2022

Episode page: https://www.leanblog.org/440 My guest for Episode #440 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Bella Englebach, the Lead Consultant at her firm “Lean for Humans.” She is also the host of the podcast “The Edges of Lean,” which is part of the Lean Communicators group. Bella is also the author of the book Creatively Lean: How to Get Out of Your Own Way and Drive Innovation Throughout Your Organization. Today, we discuss topics and questions including: Finding the balance between listening to a sensei vs. trying things and experimenting yourself? Managing to Learn book – pulling back from telling Working with middle managers caught in the middle What's your Lean origin story?? Getting out of the “way we've always done it” habit Six Sigma – didn't work well in R&D — why? Creative problem solving methodology? Creative solution generation? “Don't be so sure!” Lean – at a company via the phrase “process excellence” Are we solving the right / biggest problem?? The people side… Meaning behind the name of your company? “Lean for Humans” Episode 32 of “Lean Whiskey” Host of “The Edges of Lean” — podcast Episode 437 Peter Docker The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

Tuesday Feb 08, 2022

Prof. Emeritus - Darden / University of Virginia Episode Page: https://www.leanblog.org/439 My guest for Episode #439 of the Lean Blog Interviews Podcast is Elliott Weiss, the Oliver Wight Professor Emeritus of Business Administration, having taught in the Technology and Operations Management area at Darden.  He is the author of numerous articles in the areas of production and operations management and has extensive consulting experience for both manufacturing and service companies in the areas of production scheduling, workflow management, logistics, lean conversions and total productive maintenance. He's also a co-author of the book The Lean Anthology: A Practical Primer in Continual Improvement. Before coming to Darden in 1987, Weiss was on the faculty of the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. He has held visiting appointments at the Graduate School of Management and the University of Melbourne, Australia, and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Elliott's degrees are all from the University of Pennsylvania: B.S., B.A., Math & Economics MS Operations Research MBA Ph.D., Operations Research I reached out to Elliott to discuss his recent writing: ON THE (BASKET)BALL: WHAT BUSINESS CAN LEARN FROM STEPH CURRY He was writing about this excellent WSJ article: Stephen Curry's Scientific Quest for the Perfect Shot Today, we discuss topics and questions including: Lean & operations origin story — what sparked your interest in this as a field? The vanity plate? 0 MUDA — also had one NOMUDA Elimination of variation, enhancement of the wait, expectations management  Lean applied to teaching? Research? Taguchi loss function? Is Curry reacting to noise? Hoshin Kanri — Application to retirement – mind/body/soul Book — “The Lean Anthology” case studies Chapter on using SPC charts to monitor blood sugar & diabetes The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity, and healthcare industries. Learn more. This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network. 

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