News & Updates

Maintaining a Culture of Continuous Improvement

Posted on July 3rd, 2019 at 7:17 AM
Maintaining a Culture of Continuous Improvement

Manufacturers who implement lean often see significant results after initial training and running some key events. But, for many, it’s a challenge to continue the efforts and engage all of their employees in continuous improvement. Lean Together™ is an ongoing collaborative learning program focused on developing true and lasting cultural changes, where everyone’s job is making small incremental improvements- everyday.

 Northwest Industrial Resource Center (NWIRC) is starting a new cohort of Lean Together™ 1.0 on August 8, 2019. This working group for operational excellence is designed for manufacturing companies to study and implement concepts from the book, 2 Second Lean™, by Paul Akers. The agenda provides a structured approach with practice and collaborative learning along the way. The program involves attending 9 monthly, 2 hour sessions; ‘book club’ discussions regarding focused on 2 Second Lean™, sessions facilitated by an accomplished Lean expert; facility tours to see 2 Second Lean successes; and one on one onsite assistance for each company.

 New companies are joining Lean Together 1.0 each year and many of the graduate companies have now moved on to Lean Together 2.0, Lean Together Advanced, and/or the Lean Together CEO Roundtable. Debbie Neal, CFO at Franklin Industries, said, “Lean Together has helped our employees realize that working together as a group, and gathering multiple ideas from each other, makes us a stronger and more productive team. As a result, multiple new production records have been set.” Ashleigh Walters, President of Onex Inc, recently noted that “everyone now has a better understanding of how their job impacts their co-workers, the company as a whole, and our customers. The key to success is for owners or executives of companies to give employees the support and time needed for the program. It will then create a domino effect throughout the organization.”

Contact Molly Reichard if you are interested in learning more or having your company participate in the next cohort at (814) 217-6067 or