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State Of Readiness

Author: Joseph F Paris Jr

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A podcast devoted to sharing knowledge of how companies can become high-performance organizations. Hosted by Joseph Paris.
43 Episodes
Video Version About the Podcast Hello and welcome to another edition of State of Readiness with your host, Joseph Paris.  My guest today is Norbert Majerus; Author of “Lean-Driven Innovation” and “Winning Innovation” and a Lean Champion (Ret) from the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. He confesses that he went into engineering because he didn’t like to working with people and felt that a career in engineering would find him in the corner of a room with a computer and being left alone to do his work.  It did not quite work out that way. Norbert spent most of his career at Goodyear’s Innovation Centers.  Having first been introduced to Six Sigma, his natural gravitation was more towards Lean and the “people” side and skills associated with creating a problem-solving and leadership culture. We then talk about culture change; a topic which appears to be on many people’s minds.  But people rarely speak of what they would like to change from what, to what.  They share the phrase “culture change” and just leave it hang there in the air like a cartoon bubble and leave it to others to figure out what was meant; a grand assumption on everyone’s part. But Norbert does take the time to explain his ideas with respect to culture change; including the from what, to what.  Fun fact; “Luxembourgish” is a language… About Norbert Majerus Norbert Majerus Norbert was born in Luxembourg and has a Master’s Degree in chemistry from the University of Saarlandes, Saarbrucken Germany in 1978.  After graduation and for the next almost 40 years, Norbert works for the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, starting as a rubber chemist.  Over the course of his career with Goodyear, he held several roles in the Goodyear Innovation Centers in Luxembourg and in Akron, Ohio and holds over 60 patents and trade secrets in the United States alone.  The role he held the longest and for the final 15 years with the company was that of Lean Champion and is a Master Black Belt. Norbert has taught workshops and given keynotes at many conferences around the world.  Since retiring from Goodyear in 2017, Norbert continues to share with others the wisdom he has gained through his consultancy, his speaking opportunities, and his writings, which include two books; “Lean-Driven Innovation” and “Winning Innovation”. Norbert is also a Shingo Academy Fellow, an Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME) Assessor, and serves on the board of the Lean Product and Process Development Exchange (LPPDE). LinkedIn Profile: Company: Norbert Majerus Consulting LLC Title: Owner/Member Website: Headquarters:  Akron, Ohio Year Founded: 2018 Company Type: Privately held Company Size: Independent Consultancy Industry Experience: Retired in 2017 with almost 40 years at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co, holding the role of Lean Champion Innovation for the last almost 15 years. Practice Areas: Assist companies with; Lean Product Development and Innovation, Change Management, Lean Project Management, Managing People in a Lean Environment
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Ben Cook, Chief Supply Chain Officer at Spreetail, a next-generation 3PL company headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska.  We start the conversation with Ben sharing his early years.  His father was an Army Officer who resigned soon after Ben was born to have a more stable family life.  But that didn’t mean they set roots and became grounded, quite the opposite, as his father became a high-school football coach who moved through several high-schools in the Southeastern United States; and also did some time in Spain and in Africa on volunteer work.  So Ben struggles with where “home” is, except that it’s the United States. Ben then shares some details of his military career.  Being in the Special Forces, the assignments were not the most comfortable (including stints above the arctic circle).  But it was pre-9/11, so the assignments were (perhaps) a bit easier than afterwards. After the military, he became interested in Supply Chain.  Perhaps recognizing the importance of supply chains during his military career somehow influenced his gravitation to the discipline which, in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, was in its infancy. We walk though the various roles he had; including one in China soon after China’s assentation to being a member of the World Trade Organization.  And Ben shares some of the lessons learned along the way, some by design, some by accident, including a lesson-learned about culture eating strategy for breakfast. These experiences led him to develop his personal approach to leadership which he calls “One Team”, and I am sure you will find his thoughts on this quite interesting; perhaps even adoptable. About Ben Cook Ben Cook With over 20 years of leadership experience with a focus on leading startups, driving turnaround efforts, scaling revenue, invest to grow and global expansion, Ben Cook is a hands-on, people-focused, leader and board member.  He has had senior leadership roles at six Fortune 150 companies including; Apple, The Home Depot, Kimberly-Clark and two startup ventures and is currently the Chief Supply Chain Officer for Spreetail.  His passion is on people and helping to shape strong values-based cultures where high-performing teams master change and execute the vision for the next phase of the company’s life. Ben has served on the Board of Advisors for several startup companies, the Auburn University College of Business and the University of Tennessee’s Global Supply Chain Institute. He is also a US Army Special Operations veteran and is an avid outdoorsman and adventurer who can be frequently found hiking and camping the in Colorado wilderness. Ben is an lifelong learner who holds a BS in International Business from Auburn University, an MBA with a focus on Supply Chain Management from the University of Tennessee and multiple leadership and coaching certifications from The Wharton School, Harvard Business School, and the Center for Creative Leadership. LinkedIn Profile: Company: Spreetail, LLC Title: Chief Supply Chain Officer Website: Headquarters:  Lincoln, Nebraska Year Founded: 2006 Company Type: Privately held Company Size: Approximately $500 Million Annual Sales Industry: Spreetail is a next-generation third-party logistics (3PL) company.  In addition to traditional 3PL services, Spreetail also offers sales channel management, internet marketing services, eCommerce, end-user customer service, and software applications to support all your business fulfillment needs.
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Sanjeev Khot; Director of Global Product Quality, Cummins, Incorporated and is responsible for overall Global Quality Strategy, Supplier Quality, Reliability, APQP, and Logistics Quality Transformation to support growth and drive long-term business value. Sanjeev is a highly accomplished senior executive with global experience in manufacturing, quality, project management, and quality systems and and operations management. He is especially capable of building highly motivated teams focused on achieving results, customer satisfaction and business growth; and we explore his journey and lessons learned. What is unmistakable in our conversation is the passion and conviction Sanjeev has for his profession and for living a life worth living in general. As is plain to see, Sanjeev believes that it is important to do what you love doing, and then the success will come. What form that success might be needs to be in harmony with where your passions lie, of course. Sanjeev was born, raised, and educated in India and it is also where he joined Cummins as an operations leader in 2005. He grew his role and corresponding responsibilities at Cummins in India until and opportunity to join the Cummins team in the States became available in 2017; to which he applied and was hired. Not just a quality and process improvement professional, Sanjeev is also a systems thinker and considers the end-to-end value chain in his deliberations and deciion-making. About Sanjeev Khot Sanjeev Khot Sanjeev Khot currently serves as the Global Products Quality Director for Cummins Filtration Business. He has a demonstrated track record in; business turnarounds, global footprint execution, creating profitable and cost effective organization. With more than twenty-four years of experience, he drived long-term vision, tactical planning, and organizational growth to optimize quality, productivity and the overall customer experience. He has lead and still leads, numerous initiatives to enhance KPI management, developing business and quality strategy programs, global launch systems and other programs that foster significant cost of quality reduction and maximize satisfaction among business partners. Given his responsiblities, he leads multiple cross-functional teams globally to standardize and improve business processes and continuously identifies opportunities to elevate supply chain operations (plants, logistics and suppliers) to ensure all customer quality goals are consistently met. Sanjeev is an ASQ Certified Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence (CMQ/OE), Cummins certified Six Sigma Black Belt with 22+years of progressive leadership experience in Manufacturing Operations, Process and Product Quality improvements, Quality Systems (ISO/IATF 16949 & ISO 9001), Manufacturing Engineering, Lean and Six sigma, Quality Functional Excellence, Operations Excellence, TPM (Total Preventive Maintenance), Supplier Quality, Projects Management & Plant and facilities maintenance in national and international organizations. LinkedIn Profile: Company: Cummins Filtration, a division of Cummins, Incorporated Title: Website: , Headquarters:  Columbus, Indiana (USA) Year Founded: 1919 Company Type: Publicly Traded (CMI:NYSE) Company Size: $26-Billion, 60,000 employees worldwide Industry: Cummins Filtration is a global power leader that designs, manufactures and sells air, fuel, hydraulic and lube filtration, as well as chemical technology products for diesel and gas-powered equipment around the world. Cummins serves its customers through its network of 600 company-owned and independent distributor facilities and more than 7,200 dealer locations in over 190 countries and territories. Cummins Incorporated is an American multinational corporation that designs, manufactures, and distributes engines, filtration, and power generation products. Cummins also services engines and related equipment, including fuel systems, controls, air handling, filtration, emission control, electrical power generation systems, and trucks.
Video Version About the Podcast Hello and welcome to another edition of State of Readiness with your host, Joseph Paris. Chaos And Oceans Ltd. Today I am happy to have Mark McGrath, Founder of Chaos and Oceans Ltd, a consultancy specializing in helping individuals and teams thrive in Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous (VUCA) environments. He does this by sharing his cross-functional experience and education in the areas of strategic planning, decision-making, process improvement, capital markets, economics, training, and coaching. We start where every journey starts, at the beginning, where Mark shares his early life experiences including being an "Army Brat" of a career officer and how the original Top-Gun changed his trajectory from land to sea; becoming a Marine. And Mark shares the experiences and wisdom gained from his attending university and the instructors who were impactful in his personal and professional development. But it is in the Marines where Mark was exposed to, and became fascinated with, operating in VUCA environments and the Observe, Orient, Decide, and Act (OODA) Loop as a counter-measure. In the podcast, Mark goes on to explain why chaos and VUCA are nothing to fear and shares his “three immutable points”. He also shares why he emphasizes Orientation over observe and why he teaches OODA, and not “OODA Loop”. Everyone operates in chaos and the chaos is only increasing in amplitude and velocity over time. We need to learn, think, and decide in less time and with more orientation. Mark's sharing of his thoughts and experiences may prove invaluable. Mark also shared an article with the Operational Excellence Society entitled, "The Adaptive Entrepreneurial Method". It's worth a read. About Mark McGrath Mark McGrath Mark is the son of a West Point career officer, but he became obsessed with the sea; a convert thanks to Top Gun – the original. He attended Marquette University on a Marine Option NROTC scholarship and earned a BA in History with an emphasis on social and intellectual history in United States and Europe. After graduation, Mark served six-years active duty as a field artillery officer and another two years in the Reserves. After his time in the Marines, he held several leadership roles over the course of almost twenty years in private sector; mostly in finance and asset management industries. He also furthered his academic career and attended the University of Detroit Mercy where he earned a Masters Degree in Economics; with an emphasis on theory based on the Austrian School of Economics. Feeling he had much more to give and create and believing he could not achieve that in the corporate world, he started his consultancy. Mark is a book addict (as is evidenced by the book-shelf in the video), speaks Spanish and is a distance swimmer and surfer. LinkedIn Profile: Company: Chaos and Oceans Ltd Title: Website: Headquarters: Columbus, OH Year Founded: 2022 Company Type: Consultancy Company Size: Sole Practitioner Industry Experience: Finance, Asset Management, Practice Areas:  Team Building · Thought Leadership · Process Improvement · New Business Development · Public Speaking · Conference Speaking · Spanish · Dynamic Speaker · Experienced Speaker · Impromptu Speaking · Employee Training · Training & Development · Team Leadership · Cross-functional Team Leadership · Leadership Development · Leadership · Training · Sales · Time Management
Video Version About the Podcast Hello and welcome to another edition of State of Readiness with your host, Joseph Paris. Today I am happy to have Billy Ray Taylor, CEO of LinkedXL and author of "The Winning Link" on my podcast. Billy previously worked at Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company for 30 years; starting off on the plant floor and retiring as Global Head of Diversity and Inclusion and Executive Director of Commercial, Off Highway, and Support Manufacturing North America. The Winning Link We start the conversation taking a stroll down memory lane. Soon after graduating from Prairie View A&M University with a Bachelor's Degree in Electrical Engineering, Billy joined Goodyear starting where every recent graduate does; on the floor of the night shift. A life-long learner, Billy recognized early on as he steadily climbed the ranks at Goodyear that he had to "earn the right" to be appointed to the various roles and to retain the right to remain there. This meant that he had to have both the technical skills and also the leadership skills necessary to succeed in the various roles. The conversation comes to diversity and inclusion; with Joseph sharing that, having walked the Earth and worked with many companies located around the world, that the completive advantage of companies based in the States (along with those in Canada and the United Kingdom), is their diversity (regardless of what might be current assumptions). People bring forward what they have learned during their lives. And if everyone on a team has had the same life experiences and brought-up in a homogeneous culture, then everyone will look at a challenge with the same solution set. As the saying goes; "If everyone is thinking the same, then nobody is thinking". Diversity and Inclusion - What's the difference? But Billy also drove the point that there is a significant difference between "diversity" and "inclusion". Whereas diversity means there are a members on the team with a variety of backgrounds and expertise, inclusion means you use that talent. I guess I never gave the difference too much mind because, as an entrepreneur since 1985, I don't have resources that I would gain but not use. The thought would never occur to me. So it's not about quotas and making sure every race, creed, and sex is included in the picture (like marketing departments are apt to do). It's about understanding that the differences are strengths, but only if you use them. This was a really good, interesting, and valuable conversation. Give a listen... About Billy Ray Taylor Billy Ray Taylor Billy Taylor is an American business executive, dynamic speaker and leadership guru. He is the Founder and President of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm. Billy spent 30 years with The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT), serving as Director of North America Operations and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer. During his tenure at Goodyear, the company's earnings rose from a loss of 38M to +17.5B. As the Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion for Goodyear, Billy formulated and led the diversity and inclusion strategies for 64,000 employees across the 22 countries where Goodyear operates. After retiring from Goodyear, Billy founded LinkedXL, a consultancy that specializes in helping companies architect their Business Operating Systems, and serves as its CEO. Billy is a dynamic speaker and leadership guru who is routinely called upon by universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Armed Forces to demonstrate how to drive and sustain effective results through creating a culture of leadership and enabling employee ownership. He is a disciple of continuous improvement and operational excellence. And as a trusted global industry leader, Taylor is a member of the executive advisory board for the Shingo Institute, Utah State University Jon M. Huntsman School of Business, and The Executive Board for the Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME). He is also an independent Board Member of M-D Products. LinkedIn Profile: Company: CEO of LinkedXL, Retired from Goodyear Tire and Rubber Title: Website: Headquarters:  Independence, OH Year Founded: 2020 Company Type: LLC Company Size: 3 Employees Industry Experience: Across industries, but specializing in the Process Industry Practice Areas:  Business Operating System Architecting Firm. We’re a Premium Business Solutions Provider. We analyze your business needs and develop a custom operating and daily management system that aligns your enterprise -- Linking people, processes, and assets to deliver Customer & Company value.
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Stephan Meyer PhD, CEO of Almademey Ltd. I have known Stephan for some years now, he being one of the first professionals when I arrived in Germany over a decade ago. I have always found our conversations quite interesting. Like me, he knows you can't hit home-runs without the risk of breaking a few windows. The conversation starts where it always starts, at the beginning. Stephan shares that his father was an electrical engineer and he hoped that Stephan would also become an electrical engineer. But Stephan found himself rather bored with the complicated and gravitated towards the complex (listen or watch the intro for a really elegant explanation for the difference of the two). As such, Stephan gravitated towards psychology. Exterminating Sacred Cows Stephan shares many highlights of his professional journey, including the journey of researching the subject for his PhD, "Sacred Cows" and how they should be sought in an organization and eliminated. And he also makes the case for the necessity for businesses to face perils and even doom every now and then which would offer the opportunity for a radical change and cleansing purge; to be reborn again better. All in, a really great session and I believe you will enjoy it. I did… About Stephan Meyer, PhD Dr Stephan Meyer Stephan has orchestrated successful change initiatives in digital transformation for 25 years. During this time, he has held roles as CEO, Member of the Board, Program Manager, Mentor and Coach. At a rather mature age (you are never too old to learn), Stephan received his PhD in Business Administration and Management at the University of Gloucestershire in England for his research in radical change by finding and killing "sacred cows" in organizations. For his research, he interviewed interim managers, consultants, and line managers. Stephan is a forward-thinking advisor for avant-garde clients. Stephan is not for those who shrink from leading. There are bold choices and there are easy choices. And he stands for those in the front of the line – the bold and visionary, the entrepreneurs, and the risk-takers. Stephan clients are those who surprise the world by taking a leap into the future. LinkedIn Profile: Company: Almademey Ltd Title: CEO Website: Headquarters:  Paphos District, Cyprus Year Founded: 2022 Company Type: Privately Held, LLC Company Size: Himself Industry Experience: Service, Healthcare, Mobility, Automotive, Life Sciences, Finance, Infrastructure, Media and others Practice Areas:  Business Psychology, Business Wargaming, Change Management, Corporate Foresight, Crisis Management, Cultural Change, Digital Transformation, Innovation Management, Lean Management, Merger & Acquisition, Multi-Project Management, Operational Excellence, Organization Design, Performance Measurement, Private Equity, Program Management, Restructuring, Service Management, Strategic Management, Turnaround
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Larry Long Jr, CEO (Chief Energy Officer) of LLJR LLC and the author of the book "JOLT! Get Zapped into Intentionality: Rediscover and Believe in Your Inner Greatness". Buy the book here! Larry has a lot of energy and passion. But he is also approachable and does not shy away from sharing his own challenges and setbacks that he has faced and had to overcome. It is one of the most genuine conversations I have ever had. His parents worked for the Veteran's Administration serving those who had served. And as a result, he moved around quite a bit when he was younger. But it also instilled in him a duty to serve others. One of his core tenants is "you are what you consume", and he is not referring to just food, but media, books, even the people with which you surround yourself. If a person consumes negative, they will be negatively charged – and if they consume positive, they will be positively charged. This is not to say a person needs to become delusional by becoming falsely positive, but that they need to constantly assess that those who are perpetually negative and the professional victims need to be taken in small quantities. And similarly, not to become cynical or loose your empathy, but understand that there is only so much energy that can be devoted to helping others and a person needs to guard against over-investing in one person or cause and neglecting others – seek a balance. All in, a really great session and I believe you will enjoy it. I did... About Larry Long Jr. Larry Long Jr is the Founder and CEO of LLJR Enterprises, which focuses on sales motivation, inspiration, training & coaching. He is the host of the ‘Midweek Midday Motivational Minute’ and Author of JOLT! (*released May 19th). As a former college athlete (Go Terps! He played baseball for University of Maryland), Larry is extremely passionate about coaching, and helping professionals take their game to the 'next level'. As an experienced sales leader with a demonstrated history of success in SaaS sales, Larry brings a unique perspective to the table and understands many of the challenges faced by sales professionals. His areas of experience include Sales Training, Team Development, Leadership, & Motivation within organizations of all stages (start-up to publicly traded). Practicing what he preaches, Larry continuously seeks opportunities to learn & grow. Larry looks forward to assisting your organization. You can find Larry on his YouTube channel which includes his series entitled the Midweek Mid-Day Motivational Minute. LinkedIn Profile: Company: LLJR Enterprises Title: CEO (Chief Energy Officer) Website: LLJR LLC Headquarters:  Raleigh-Durham, Chapel Hill Year Founded: 2021 Company Type: Privately Held, LLC Company Size: Himself Practice Areas:  Motivational Speaking, Coaching, Consulting, Author
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Tim Pettry, Program Director for Continuous Improvement at the Cleveland Clinic’s Akron General (CCAG) Hospital where he directs the implementation of a Culture of Improvement for over 5,500 caregivers, utilizing the Cleveland Clinic Improvement Model. One of the biggest “take-aways” of this conversation is the difference in syntax between manufacturing and healthcare that needs to be considered when attempting to deploy an Continuous Improvement program in a healthcare environment. But we start the conversation at the beginning (where else?) with Tim’s 18 years of experience at Ford Motor Company at their Cleveland Manufacturing Site. As a result of the continuous improvement efforts of Tim and his colleagues, Ford won the Shingo Prize with Tim himself being appointed to the Shingo Institute’s Board of Examiners in 1996. I am sure you will enjoy listening to the conversation as much as I did. Give a listen. About Tim Pettry Tim Pettry is the Program Director, Continuous Improvement at Cleveland Clinic Akron General (CCAG) where he directs the implementation of a Culture of Improvement for over 5,500 caregivers, utilizing the Cleveland Clinic Improvement Model. He has been a member of a Continuous Improvement team since 2008 that serves over 70,000 Cleveland Clinic caregivers worldwide. Prior to jumping into the Healthcare field, he spent 18 years with the Ford Motor Company at their Cleveland Manufacturing Site in several roles including Cost Analyst, Training Manager, and Ford Production System Coordinator. His final year at Ford he served as a Ford Production System Coach for Powertrain Operations. Tim’s career started in retailing as a Department Manager for the May Company (now part of Macy’s) where he learned to appreciate the concepts of customer service. Recognizing that a career in Retailing did not fit with his new role as a father, Tim joined Ernst & Whinney’s (now Ernst & Young) National Client Services department in Cleveland, where he led a team of 6 analysts and multiple students who were responsible for providing secondary research data and analysis in support of major request for proposals for Audit and Consulting services, and maintaining the firm’s Mailing and Alumni programs. Tim’s passion for continuous improvement work comes from participating in and leading several cultural transformation efforts while at Ford and the Cleveland Clinic. A highlight of his career was helping to save Ford’s Cleveland Engine Plant 1 from closing in 2002. The work there was recognized as one of the pivotal events in valuing work and delivering results in the book, “Inside the Ford-UAW Transformation” Tim was appointed to the Shingo Institute’s Board of Examiners in 1996 after leading the team responsible for writing Cleveland Engine Plant 2’s Achievement Report and coordinating the site visit that led to the plant being awarded the Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing. He has served as a lead examiner for over 10 years. As an examiner, he has participated in a number of site visits to a variety of different manufacturing and healthcare organizations. Additionally, as an examiner, Tim has had the opportunity to review numerous books vying for the Shingo Prize for Publications. Tim served for 6 years as the Shingo Institute’s representative on the AME / Shingo Institute / SME Lean Certification Oversight and Appeals Committee, serving as Chairman of the committee in 2010. He earned his Master of Business Administration in Management and Labor Relations from Cleveland State University. He and his wife, Lisa, have 5 grown children and 7 grandchildren. LinkedIn Profile: Company: Cleveland Clinic Title: Program Director, Continuous Improvement Headquarters:  Cleveland, Ohio, USA Year Founded: 1921 Company Type: Not-for-profit Hospital Company Size: 72,500 Employees, $12.4 Billion in Revenue Practice Areas:  Cleveland Clinic is a not-for-profit American academic medical center based in Cleveland, Ohio with expertise in all healthcare practice areas and is consistently ranked as one of the best hospitals in the United States. It is owned and operated by the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, an Ohio not-for-profit corporation established in 1921. It runs a 170-acre (69 ha) campus in Cleveland, as well as 11 affiliated hospitals, 19 family health centers in Northeast Ohio, and hospitals in Florida and Nevada. International operations include the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi hospital in the United Arab Emirates and Cleveland Clinic Canada, which has two executive health and sports medicine clinics in Toronto. Another hospital campus in the United Kingdom, Cleveland Clinic London, opened to outpatients in 2021 and is scheduled to fully open in 2022
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Kevin Robinson, Managing Director of OPEX Performance Solutions Ltd and Toyota Alumni; having spent over 28 years at Toyota UK at the Deeside Engine Plant; starting as an Engineer in 1991 and working his way up the ranks until retiring as the General Manager of Manufacturing Operations. Rather than starting at the beginning of Kevin's journey, we start in the present with Kevin sharing that he had many mentors along his journey who proved invaluable to him on a professional and personal level. And to honor them, he devotes a considerable amount of time being a mentor to others. A lifelong learner, Kevin shares his passion for exploration and discovery. That he is humble and understands that what he knows is nothing compared to what is left still to learn is obvious throughout our conversation. Throughout the entire conversation, Kevin shares nugget of wisdom (knowledge with experience) on a wide variety of topics, which is not a surprise considering his journey within Toyota. I am sure you will enjoy listening to the conversation as much as I did. About Kevin Robinson Kevin Robinson Kevin Robinson has three decades of hands on leadership experience in manufacturing operations within Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK. Having enjoyed a diverse career working in all key functions before stepping into a general management position. Responsible for delivering on all performance measures he led power train manufacturing operations in the UK through a period of significant challenge, securing a 30% manufacturing capacity improvement with zero capital investment and becoming a benchmark for Toyota global best practice. With a deep knowledge of the Toyota Production System (TPS) and the Toyota Way, Kevin understands the key leadership behaviors, practical methodologies and skills that are essential for delivering operational excellence into any organization. As the founding senior manager for the Toyota Lean Management Centre (TLMC) he developed a program of educational materials and onsite coaching support for sharing Toyota best practice to external clients across a diverse range of sectors, including Government economic development initiatives in Wales and the Republic of Ireland. Kevin’s passion lies in creating the right environment to engage all employees, allowing them to contribute positively, grow as individuals and deliver on the key metrics that really matter. He continues to support organizations in their pursuit of operational excellence, providing both executive coaching and mentoring services. Additionally, he continues to share his knowledge as an adjunct lecturer with Trinity College, Dublin and as a Non-executive director with the Irish Centre for Business Excellence (ICBE). LinkedIn Profile: Company: OPEX Performance Solutions Ltd (retired Toyota-UK) Title: Managing director (GM Manufacturing Operations at Toyota-UK) Headquarters:  Greater Cheshire West and Chester Area Year Founded: OPEX Performance Solutions was founded in 2019 Company Type: Privately Held Practice Areas:   OPEX Performance Solutions exists to help organizations achieve their true potential. Through the provision of coaching, mentoring and consulting services we aim to add significant value to your current operations. We bring practical hands on experience, deep subject knowledge and a passionate desire to share and make peoples working lives richer and more rewarding.
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Sam Smolik, SVP Americas Manufacturing (retired) for LyondellBasell and author of the book, "The Power of Goal Zero". After his retirement, Sam decided to share the lessons learned during his journey and years of experience - the best practices and techniques for achieving Operational Excellence - and that led him to authoring his book, "The Power of Goal ZERO" (published in June 2021). Through the telling of personal stories and sharing his experiences, "The Power of Goal ZERO" provides a proven roadmap for demonstrating strong leadership, creating a culture of excellence, implementing organizational change, developing effective management systems, and achieving superior performance. In today's competitive environment, individuals and organizations must be best in class to compete and win. The book is designed for leaders and aspiring leaders at all levels to improve personal effectiveness, organizational efficiency, and motivation of people; with the principles helping to enable rapid transformation in any organization. In my interview of Sam, you will gain insights that will undoubtedly help you and your organization become best in class. About Sam Smolik Before retiring from LyondellBasell Industries in 2017, Sam served as Global Vice President for Environment, Health, and Safety for LyondellBasell, Royal Dutch Shell, and The Dow Chemical Company (where he started his career). Sam earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, and currently serves on the Engineering Advisory Board there. In addition, Sam currently serves on several Boards of Directors including; Axalta Coating Systems, Evergreen Industrial Services, and Ducks Unlimited. LinkedIn Profile: Company: LyondellBasell Title: SVP Americas Manufacturing (retired) Website: Headquarters:  Houston, Texas (for US) Year Founded: 2007 (as a result of the acquisition of Lyondell Chemical Company by Basell Polyolefins. Company Type: Publicly Traded (NYSE; LYB) Practice Areas:  LyondellBasell is one of the largest plastics, chemicals and refining companies in the world and produces materials and products that are key to advancing solutions to modern challenges like enhancing food safety through; lightweight and flexible packaging, protecting the purity of water supplies through stronger and more versatile pipes, improving the safety, comfort and fuel efficiency of many of the cars and trucks on the road, and ensuring the safe and effective functionality in electronics and appliances. LyondellBasell sells products into more than 100 countries and is the world's largest producer of polypropylene compounds and the largest licensor of polyolefin technologies. In 2021, LyondellBasell was named to Fortune Magazine’s list of the “World’s Most Admired Companies” for the fourth consecutive year.
Video Version About the Podcast Hello and welcome to another episode of “State of Readiness”. My guest today is William "Bill" Bierce, Co-Founder of Bierce & Kenerson PC and author of the book, "Smarter Business Exits". The topic of discussion for this episode is the importance of taking into consideration the exit strategies that might present themselves in the future and how to properly prepare to minimize the anxiety and angst and maximize the return. Founded in 1990, Bierce & Kenerson, P.C. has over twenty-five years of experience in advising American and foreign entrepreneurs and businesses on sustainable growth through corporate transactions, commercial contracts and technology and intellectual property management. William’s business advisories assist companies, their owners, boards, and investors throughout a company’s business lifecycles where he advises on such matters as organizational design, business formation, capital raising, equity compensation, governance, risk management, crisis resolution, resiliency planning, compliance, roll-ups, corporate sales and divestitures. And with his technical advisory, he assists domestic and foreign clients on digital transformation, e-commerce, privacy, cybersecurity and strategic transactions. Fluent in French, William has an undergraduate diploma from Yale and law degrees from New York University and the University of Grenoble, France. About William Bierce LinkedIn Profile; Company; Bierce & Kenerson, P.C. Website; Headquarters;  Mount Kisco, New York Year Founded; 1990 Company Type; Private Corporation Specialties;  
Video Version About the Podcast In this episode of "State of Readiness", I welcome Michael F. Schein; the Head Hype Man at MicroFame Media. We met at a "non-conference" in Saratoga Springs in the summer of 2021 where Michael was speaking about "hype". When Michael graduated from university (much to his parent's chagrin) he announced that he was going to be in a rock-band. Even though the band didn't become its own genre, they did pretty well. Much of the band's success was attributed to do with Michael "hyping-up" the band and its promotion; even going so far as purposefully booking themselves in a venue where they knew they would be booed off the stage. After all, there is no such thing as "bad publicity". In our conversation, Michael shares his thoughts on what hype is and how to use it as a positive force to create an energy around your persona to stand-out from the crowd and be recognized; mastering the art and science of using shameless propaganda for personal and social good. Imagine if you could generate and leverage hype for positive purposes―like legitimate business success, helping people, or effecting positive change in your community. Influencers have always deployed the power of hype to get what they want. But never in history have people been so susceptible to propaganda and persuasion as they are now. Hype truly runs our world. About Michael F. Schein Michael F. Schein is the Head Hype Man at MicroFame Media, a company that specializes in making consultants and coaches famous in their fields, and author of the book entitled “The Hype Handbook: 12 Indispensable Success Secrets From the World’s Greatest Propagandists, Self-Promoters, Cult Leaders, Mischief Makers, and Boundary Breakers” which is published by McGraw Hill and released in January of 2021 and is available on Amazon and wherever else books are sold. Michael’s clients range from the outliers with fresh ideas who want to get their message out and make their mark – to executives at companies such as eBay, Magento, The Medici Group, Ricoh, LinkedIn, Citrix and many others. Michael graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelors of Arts degree in English and his writing has appeared in Fortune, Forbes, Inc., Psychology Today, and Huffington Post, and he is a speaker for international audiences spanning from the northeastern United States to the southeastern coast of China. LinkedIn Profile; Company; MicroFame Media Website; Headquarters;  Beacon, New York Year Founded; 2012 Company Type; Private Corporation Specialties;  MicroFame Media is a marketing agency that turns consultants (and other idea-based businesses) into thought leaders when they don’t have the time to do it on their own.
Video Version About the Podcast On Your Game In this episode of "State of Readiness", I welcome Marcy Axelrod, Author of "On Your Game" where she explains that each of us have our "A-game"; our individual "superpowers" that we bring every day. And most of the time we are on our game. But what do we do when we get knocked off our game and what do we need to do to fix it? She shares that "research shows that 80+% of Americans lays in bed every night feeling they are not accomplishing what they feel they can", attributing to loneliness, discontentment, and depression; often leading to substance abuse. On Your Game On Your Game is a wake-up call to all of us who find our days whizzing by without achieving our goals. In a witty, captivating style, Marcy explains the challenges people face, why they face them, and how they can be overcome (and not you). She shares how the "off your game" systems that surround us are constantly conspiring to block our achievement and details what living "on our game" is really about; providing elegant solutions and easy tools to propel us back "On Our Game!" and keep us there. About Marcy Axlerod Marcy Axelrod Marcy Axelrod is a Management Consultant, subject-matter expert/keynote speaker, Author of “On Your Game!”, and Forbes Magazine contributor on trending topic of Customer Journey Mapping with over 25 years of hands-on strategy and innovation work at 'Big 4' consulting firms and boutique consulting organizations focused on accelerating company growth. Marcy's award-winning book, On Your Game! directs consulting tools to drive achievement in our busy lives, supporting business and personal achievement, and earning highly favorable reviews from professors at Harvard, Yale, Columbia and Cornell. With a foundation of ten years as a leader in KPMG Consulting’s (BearingPoint’s) High Technology Practice in Silicon Valley, Ms. Axelrod proved her abilities to secure new clients and build ongoing revenue streams by delivering meaningful process and financial results. She utilizes a mix proven and innovative approaches to customer strategy, operational effectiveness, and growth strategy by integrating design thinking (a la Dave Evans and Bill Burnett), Jobs-to-be-Done and customer empathy based approaches. Marcy helped build Gartner Group’s Silicon Valley Strategy Consulting practice, was Vice President of Strategy for 3Q Digital, (Silicon Valley’s digital agency of record, where she built the company’s consulting capability, contributing to its 40% revenue growth and redirecting how the company goes to market. Since then she has been delivering independent work (see attached), and advising CEO’s from Wall Street firms to computer science camps. Prior to joining KPMG Consulting/BearingPoint (1999), Ms. Axelrod performed buy-side equity research at Lehman Brothers on Wall Street. She also consulted to Fortune 500 companies such as Applied Materials, Hillenbrand Industries and others in business strategy, process redesign and go-to-market strategy creation. Ms. Axelrod earned a Bachelor’s degree with honors from Cornell University and an MBA in International Business from Thunderbird. LinkedIn Profile; Company; On Your Game Corporation Website; Headquarters;  Port Chester, New York Year Founded; 2008 Company Type; Private Corporation Specialties;  Deliver corporate growth, innovation and effectiveness projects for global leaders and late stage start-up organizations. Deliver Jobs-to-be-Done customer strategy through primary and secondary research surfacing what they need to accomplish (important, under-satisfied jobs). Accelerate top line growth and internal effectiveness. Work with executives to evaluate issues, design and implement changes to make teams more effective and innovative. Speak about the nature of achievement today, how it actually works, what keeps people and businesses from achieving more, and what her 20 years of research shows.
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is John Bicknell, CEO and Founder of More Cowbell Unlimited. Our conversation focuses on processes and the data, and information, that is captured and generated in these systems. But more important, what this information is trying to tell us, how we can hear the messaging, and how it can help in our decision-making process by adding clarity, squelching the noise, and increasing our confidence in that what we are about to do is wise (or not) Processes underlie all naturally occurring phenomena. Poorly understood or opaque processes are a national security intelligence gap. If corporate, critical infrastructure, government, and societal processes were visible and explicit, opportunities become available to strengthen, exploit or monitor these processes. Process mining interrogates system event logs to find the wisdom that might exist in the data and information (with information being data with context). And although many might immediately think of digital information system such as an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system or Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system when they think of event logs, this does not have to be the case. For instance, a pilot's flight log is a system event log; with the people reviewing it being the interrogators. A really interesting conversation which I am sure you will enjoy. About John Bicknell John is a national security thought leader and passionate analytics visionary. He has written extensively on national security matters related to information warfare, critical infrastructure defense, and space situational awareness. And he founded More Cowbell Unlimited to help America remain a beacon of hope and strength on the world stage. America must adopt Process Dominance as a core capability in order to innovate and survive in the Information Age. His vision is for process technologies to be as ubiquitous as processes are. John earned his Bachelor or Engineering degree at Vanderbilt University and was a NROTC Midshipman (but without a scholarship). Afterwards, John joined the United States Marine Corps and served worldwide including tours in Afghanistan and assignments at the Pentagon. He retired as Lieutenant Colonel in 2010.  He also earned a Master’s Degree in Manpower Analysis from the Naval Postgraduate School. If you’d like to understand more about how John and the More Cowbell Unlimited team are adapting process mining to enable better, faster decisions for United States Space Force, be sure to check out John’s guest article, Process Mining, Situational Awareness, and Competitive Advantage, published by the Operational Excellence Society. Company; More Cowbell Unlimited Website; Headquarters;  Lake Oswego, Oregon Year Founded; 2018 Company Type; Private Corporation Specialties;   More Cowbell Unlimited is developing bleeding edge process technologies for national defense and industry. We create machine readable process models of naturally occurring phenomena such as; societies, governments, businesses enable numerous applications: Reflexive maneuver operations; Information warfare defense; Antifragility and network vulnerability analyses; Trans-national crime organization chart discovery; Red Team projects such as realistic threat emulation; Business and government agency optimization and “what if” simulations
Video Version About the Podcast My guest today is Steven Leuschel, Director of Operational Excellence at Guardian Elder Care, with a network of elderly care facilities located across Western Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Eastern Ohio. Steven and I had met at the Operational Excellence Summit at the Kennametal Center for Operational Excellence at Saint Vincent College where I was delivering a "State of Readiness Masterclass and Workshop in 2018. With four books under his belt and another in process, Steven is a rather prolific writer and we start by discussing the books he had written and the messages and lessons he hoped to convey to the reader. A true academic at heart, Steven is always studying, researching, learning, and teaching. But the real meat on the bone is our discussions related to Lean and the healthcare industry; how the adaptation and application of Lean principles in the healthcare industry are different and how they are similar to their origins in manufacturing. About Steven Leuschel Steven is an experienced practitioner and academic of Lean and Operational Excellence with an emphasis in applying his skills in the field of healthcare. He has published several books including; • "Lean Culture Change: Using a Daily Management System" • "The Executive Guide to Lean Culture Change", a companion workbook • Why Lean Transformation Fails: Common Challenges to Adopting New Leadership and Management • and his latest book; "Sensei Secrets: Mentoring at Toyota Georgetown" which is based on his thesis for his Doctorate Degree and is a study with former members of Toyota Georgetown's start-up years and their relationships with their Senseis. He was previously an adjunct professor at his alma mater, Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania and a member of the Operational Excellence team at Indiana Regional Medical Center located in Indiana, Pennsylvania. Steven earned his Bachelors in Liberal Arts and his Masters in Business Management, Operational Excellence at Saint Vincent College (one of the few institutes of higher learning that offer a degree in Operational Excellence). And he earned his PhD in Business Administration and Leadership Studies at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He is married and the father of four. And his goal is to climb the highest point in all 50 States. Company; Guardian Elder Care Website; Headquarters;  8796 US-219, Brockway, PA 15824 Year Founded; 1995 Company Type; Non-Profit Company Size;  5,500 Employees Specialties;  Rehabilitation Services, Long-Term Care, Pharmacy Services, Healthcare Staffing
Video Version About the Podcast I invite David Mackey is a senior manager at AbbVie presently responsible for the implementation of the SAP "procure to pay" processes at AbbVie. Previously, he was the Director of Operational Excellence at Pharmacyclics (a subsidiary of AbbVie). In addition to AbbVie, he has had senior leadership roles at Genentech and Roche. We start the conversation with David's early days when he was "bitten" by the travel bug, specifically the international travel bug. He was an exchange student to Sweden in high school and to Mexico when at community college. His first degree was in Geography with an emphasis on international trade from Humboldt State University and he earned his MBA in International Business Trade and Operations from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. His love of travel has guided his professional journey; always seeking and chasing opportunities which would take him near (across the US) and far (everywhere else). Most of this work was found in the pharma/biotech industries. David shares the various companies he has worked for and the assignments he had there; each building on the other and each adding to his ever-increasing variety and scope of his accumulated life's experiences. We also spend some time discussing how he and the people who he leads, which are located around the world, have coped during the COVID pandemic. Interestingly, he shares that already being a disbursed workforce, the workings of his team were already purposely designed and configured for working virtually. The conversation then gravitates to post-pandemic business operations, what that may look like, what challenges might be faced, and what may be needed to keep a edge of the team's knife sharp. Give a listen. I am sure you will enjoy hearing David's story as much as I did. About David Mackey David is a global operational excellence leader that focuses on competitive advantage by optimizing employees, teams, technology, organization structure/culture, physical infrastructure, processes and the ability to measure and manage performance and results. His extensive experience managing operations and leading/participating in strategic global initiatives include; the design and launch of a new and ecommerce capable corporate websites, to restructuring multiple regional global supply chains and global service centers, to mapping the customers' experience to launch several improved and/or new operational processes and organizations.  After high school graduation, David departed as an exchange student for a second senior year to Sweden where he lived with an exchange family, attended school, and got a job on a dairy farm in the village where he lived. During his time there, he auditioned successfully to play keyboards in a rock band called Sista Utvagen (The Last Way Out); an opening act for more famous Swedish bands (such as Cal P Dahl) whose US hit "Can't Get That Feeling", with the crazy "Uga chaga uga chaga" as the memorable chorus. This gave him the opportunity to travel around Europe. He returned to California and attended Delta Community College, during which he was a summer exchange student to Mexico to improve his Spanish. Given his worldly experiences, he thrives in and across different cultures leading diverse, multi-site teams. And he has leveraged these experiences in his professional career with opportunities to work extensively in countries such as France, Mexico, Singapore, Sweden and across the US for extensive periods of time; as well as many other countries for shorter time periods. He considers his Core Competencies to be: Customer Focus • Coaching to Potential • Global Process Development • GxP • Data and Process Management, Analysis and Communication • Global/Trade Challenges • Continuous Improvement • Program Development and Execution Company; AbbVie Website; Headquarters;  North Chicago, Illinois Year Founded; 2013 Company Type; Pharmaceuticals Company Size;  ~48,000 employees worldwide Specialties;  Immunology, Oncology, Neuroscience research, manufacturing and sales/distribution. AbbVie may have been founded in 2013, but its roots run deep. In 2013, AbbVie became a separate company from Abbott, though the company shares a common legacy and strong prospects for future success. When formed, AbbVie became a new kind of enterprise—a biopharmaceutical company. AbbVie, sees a future full of possibility; where health is in reach and patient lives are improved. They blend the stability, global scale, resources and commercial capabilities of a pharmaceutical company with the focus and culture of a biotech. Today, their employees around the world focus on delivering transformational medicines and therapies that offer significant patient benefits. AbbVie's ~48,000 employees are scientists, researchers, communicators, manufacturing specialists and regulatory experts located around the globe. They come up with new approaches to addressing today’s health issues—from life-threatening illness to chronic conditions. We target specific difficult-to-cure diseases where we can leverage our core R&D expertise to advance science. We’re constantly working to create solutions that go beyond treating the illness to have a positive impact on patients’ lives, on societies—and on science itself.
Video version About the Podcast Today I invite back to "State of Readiness", Brent Gleeson, a Navy SEAL combat veteran and serial entrepreneur. In addition to being a best-selling author of "Taking Point" and his new release, "Embrace the Suck", Brent has leveraged the principles of leadership, discipline, accountability and resiliency learned in training and applied down range for building high-performance teams in the business world. Brent was the very first guest on "State of Readiness" back when it was audio only and the conversation was riveting. In this episode, we talk about how he came to be a SEAL (hint: it wasn't a life-long ambition), what was involved, and the experiences and wisdom he has gained from his experiences; which he uses to help individuals and companies become the best versions of themselves they can be. And, of course, we talk about the lessons he shares in his books. I am sure you will enjoy the conversation as much as I did. Upon leaving SEAL Team 5, Brent turned his discipline and battlefield lessons to the world of business and has become an accomplished entrepreneur, author, and acclaimed speaker on topics ranging from leadership and building high-performance teams to culture and organizational transformation. I am sure you will enjoy the conversation as much as I did. About Brent Gleeson Brent Gleeson is a Navy SEAL combat veteran with multiple tours to Iraq and Africa. Upon leaving SEAL Team 5, Brent turned his discipline and battlefield lessons to the world of business and has become an accomplished entrepreneur, author, and acclaimed speaker on topics ranging from leadership and building high performance teams to culture and organizational transformation. You can learn more about his leadership philosophies in his weekly columns on and Brent is the Founder and CEO of TakingPoint Leadership, a progressive leadership and management consulting firm with a focus on business transformation and building high-performance cultures. With degrees in finance and economics from Southern Methodist University, certificates in English and History from Oxford University in England and a graduate business degree from University of San Diego, Gleeson’s extensive experience is both academic and real-world in nature. Gleeson has won awards for business leadership and was named one of the “Top 10 CEOs” in Entrepreneur Magazine’s October 2013 issue for his exemplary approach to building high-performance teams in business. Between his experiences in the SEAL Teams and building award winning organizations that have topped the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing companies, Brent has become a business transformation expert. TakingPoint highlights his ten-principle program all leaders and managers will need to lead change and achieve winning results in the twenty-first century business landscape. Company; Taking Point Leadership Website; Headquarters; Rancho Santa Fe, California Year Founded; 2014 Company Type; Consultancy Company Size;  10 Specialties;  Leadership and Organizational Development, Culture Transformation, Team Building, Workshops, and Keynotes.
Video version About the Podcast My guest today is Carey 'Vixen' Lohrenz and was one of the first female F-14 fighter pilots in the United States Navy; call-sign Vixen. Given her experiences, she knows well that inconsistent execution in fast-moving, dynamic environments can generate catastrophic results. Carey has translated her training, leadership, and strategy experience in the Navy to helping business leaders supercharge their performance in today’s competitive business environments; adapting strategies under pressure, reducing errors, and overcoming obstacles along the way. Her first book, “Fearless Leadership”, was a Wall Street Journal Best Seller – and explored the characteristics of true leaders—courage, tenacity, and integrity. Her latest book, “Span of Control”, picks up where Fearless Leadership left off – encouraging and guiding readers to develop resilience for facing hard times – offering a clear path out of the chaos when we are seemingly overwhelmed. Carey is a selfless individual, the very definition of a servant leader, and I am very pleased to consider her a personal friend of mine. About Carey 'Vixen' Lohrenz Carey 'Vixen' Lohrenz Carey Lohrenz is a dynamic communicator with an incredible story. As the first female F-14 Tomcat pilot, she was a pioneer in military aviation. Having flown missions worldwide as a combat, mission-ready United States Navy pilot, Carey Lohrenz is used to working in fast moving, dynamic environments where inconsistent execution can generate catastrophic results. Carey is uniquely qualified in the fundamentals of winning under pressure, reducing errors and overcoming obstacles. Her mastery of these fundamentals can help your team triumph in this high-risk, time crunched world. Her experience in the all-male environment of fighter aviation and her ability to pass on the lessons learned in her career allow her to deliver insight and guidance from a credible platform. As a high content Keynote Speaker, who is both motivational and inspirational, Carey Lohrenz inspires Fearless Leadership and increased team performance. Carey has been requested by name from some of the top Fortune 100 businesses. Her ability to connect with both an audience and on a one-on-one level, coupled with her knowledge and experience in leading high-performing, diverse teams, has made her highly sought after as a business consultant and leadership speaker. Carey Lohrenz is the author of “Fearless Leadership" and "Span of Control." She resides in Excelsior, MN and is currently working on her Masters in Business Administration in Strategic Leadership. Company; Carey Lohrenz Website; Headquarters; Minnetonka, MN Year Founded; 2012 Company Type; Consultancy Company Size;  1 Specialties;  Keynote Speaker, Workshops, Team Building, Strategic Partnerships, Creating High Performance Teams, Achieving Life Balance
Video version About the Podcast My guest today is Dave Light, owner of Certainty Resources Limited and author of the book, “The Certainty Principle”. Dave has had a very interesting career path; beginning as a Teamster working on the docks in San Francisco before going to UC Berkeley where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemistry and Biophysics. After graduation, he worked for several companies including Genentech and had several roles, including that of CEO. Dave earned his Masters Degree in Management and Leadership at Western Governors University. And in 2015, started his firm which is dedicated to helping hone the leadership and sales skills. His clients include some of the most well-known companies in the world. A new book, “Culture of Certainty”, will be published is the summer of 2021. About David Light Company; Certainty Resources Website; Headquarters;  Year Founded; Company Type; Company Size;  Specialties;  
  Video version About the Podcast I invite Aaron Roe, presently the Process Owner of Customer Experience at Roche Diabetes Care, as my guest on this episode of "State of Readiness". This is a really great conversation full of enthusiasm and passion. Aaron started his professional career out of tech school at a small start-up weighing drops of water as part of the testing process for medical devices. His process included queuing 10 devices at a time. One day, a colleague suggested there was a better way; and that better way was queuing three at a time. This proved to be more efficient and Aaron has been infatuated with process improvement ever since. But the real "ah-ha" moment came as Aaron saw the start-up grow and move from Lean principles to value-based manufacturing. This resulted in employees working to the KPI (as naturally occurs), but not in what was in the best interests of the company. The results looked good on paper for a time, but the company was building inventory; with much of the inventory expiring before it was sold and brought the company to near failure. A true tail of woe. But an experience which would shape Aaron's thinking since. Give a listen. I am sure you will enjoy hearing Aaron's story as much as I did. About Aaron Roe Aaron Roe has spent the last 15 years at Roche, holding positions and roles including; Commercial Excellence Director, Business Process Owner for Global Marketing and Customer Experience and various roles in Continuous Improvement, Quality, and Compliance. For the past seven years, he has also been an Instructor and Course Designer in Lean Principles at Purdue’s College of Engineering. His career began in food service before moving on to automotive service and then to Medical-Devices.  From the factory, to the warehouse, to the customer’s lab, he has specialized in leading professionals to take what is and make it better. But his passion and specialization are tackling the “Big Hairy Performance Problems” that loom large and prevent business from moving forward and is especially adept at facilitating collaboration and progress in complex scenarios. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix and his MBA at Indiana Wesleyan University. Company; Roche Website; Headquarters;  Basel, Switzerland Year Founded; 1896 Company Type; Pharmaceuticals Company Size;  80,000 employees worldwide Specialties;  F. Hoffmann-La Roche AG (aka "Roche") is a Swiss multinational healthcare company that operates worldwide under two divisions: Pharmaceuticals and Diagnostics. Its holding company, Roche Holding AG, has bearer shares listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange. Roche Diabetes Care is a leading provider of blood sugar monitoring systems and insulin pumps. With more than 40 years experience, our number one goal is to help people living with diabetes track and manage their blood sugar so they may have better control of their health.
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