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Ken Eakin

Ken Eakin

Owner, Founder, Ken Eakin Consulting

Ken Eakin is author of Office Lean: Understanding and Implementing Flow in Administrative and Professional Environments (CRC Press, 2020). He currently works as a lean consultant, coach, facilitator and trainer at Ken Eakin Consulting. Prior to being a consultant, he was Senior Advisor of Operational Excellence at Export Development Canada and a Proces Improvement Manager with Maersk Line. He holds an MA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. He teaches part-time in the MBA program at the University of Ottawa's Telfer School of Management.  

Articles by Ken Eakin
It's Time to See JIT as A Hero Rather than A Villain
Lean and JIT production have never been the primary causes of materials in the world's supply chains reported over the past year, says Ken Eakin. He explains the true nature of JIT and suggests that it can in fact support powerful solutions that are far more resilient and efficient than we have today. More »
Does A Lack Of Physical Inventory Make Office Work “Different”?
While "waste" is easy to see and address in a factory setting, people working in an office environment have just as much to gain from learning how to reduce excess inventory and other forms of waste, says Ken Eakin. More »
What Ever Happened to Mura?
If we really want to dig down into the root causes of waste, we need to bring the two lost Ms of muri and mura back into the basic “Lean 101” curriculum and vocabulary, argues lean thinker Ken Eakin More »
Is There a Tradeoff Between Employee Morale and Productivity?
"Is there a tradeoff between employee morale and productivity?" is a question oft-discussed in lean circles. Ken Eakin has his own take on this ages-old question -- read more to see his answer. More »
Advice from the Gemba: Top Mistakes Lean Leaders Make II
Everybody makes mistakes, lean leaders included. Our previous list of mistakes made by lean leaders was the highest-performing installment in the Advice from the Gemba series - we now follow it up with a sequel. More »
Advice from the Gemba: The Most Frustrating Types of Waste (and How to Eliminate Them!)
If you've ever lost sleep over a particularly frustrating source of waste in your organization, you're not alone. Some forms of waste are easier to eliminate - others are so hard that they start to blur the line between "challenging" and "enraging.  " Today we feature three experienced lean practitioners with the most frustrating types of waste they've encountered, plus their favorite tips for eliminating them. More »
Advice from the Gemba: Keeping Senior Leadership Committed
The cost savings of lean are not always apparent in the short term. If your senior leadership was skeptical going into the transformation, this situation can easily make them lose confidence and pull the plug. What's the best way to keep them onboard and committed? Three lean practitioners share their thoughts. More »
Boatloads of Muda
Ken Eakin saw his fair share of waste during his 13 years in the ocean-shipping industry, especially in the transportation process. Now a lean coach, he looks back on some of the industry's most common wasteful practices and shares some lean tips and logic for avoiding them. If your lean work involves transportation, we're willing to bet you'll find something to relate to! Read more. More »