Driving High Performance in Product and Process Development
Thank you for your interest in our inaugural lean product and process development (LPPD) conference "Designing the Future".
Why call it "Designing the Future"? Because that’s exactly what organizations do when they develop new products and processes – nothing less than designing their future because the decisions made during development will impact them for years to come.
I am thrilled that some of the most successful practitioners and leading thinkers have agreed to speak at this important learning and sharing event.
LPPD principles and practices comprise a unique and powerful system that has been successfully applied to transform development capability in automotive, construction, robotics, health care, aerospace, furniture and others. Consider joining us in Traverse City to meet others who are on this journey and learn how a diverse group of organizations are applying LPPD methods to create new value in their industry.
We are working diligently to make this conference the most important lean conference you will attend this year.
LEI’s Lean Product and Process Development initiative started in earnest 4 years ago. During that time, much has been learned and innovations have been created and a community is beginning to form.
This event features speakers and attendees from all sorts of industries and walks of life. Each presentation is sourced and vetted by thought leaders in the community. We focus on community pull, industry trends, and the expertise of our coaches when vetting and analyzing the right content for our community.
We wanted to create the ideal environment were every attendee gets up close to hear, see, participate and learn. In order to do so we are keeping this event to a limited audience size. We highly recommend you register as soon as possible as with this line up it will sell out.
Plenary & Breakout Sessions
Lean Product Development in the Context of New Vehicle Architecture at Rivian
Rivian is developing electric vehicles that inspire people to get out and explore the world. In 2020, the company will launch a pickup and SUV with a level of performance, capability, and utility beyond anything else on the market. Starting with a clean sheet, Rivian has developed a vehicle architecture optimized for connectivity, an electric drivetrain, and autonomy.
The company’s scalable architecture will support a portfolio of vehicle models in a wide range of segments and new technologies as the industry transforms from personally owned vehicles to mobility services. Rivian’s systems-based product development approach is enabled by a multi-disciplinary, cross-functional organizational architecture that reduces the need for iterative design processes and the overall time-to-market.
Applying LPPD to Solve Challenges in the Contexts of Poverty
What if we applied Lean Product and Process Development (LPPD) principles to some of the world’s most difficult challenges in the contexts of poverty and humanitarian work? In this session, Kendra will talk about how MIT D-Lab, a program at that works with people around the world to develop and advance collaborative approaches and practical solutions to global poverty challenges, has applied LPPD principles to its research, courses, and technology development projects.
Curating a Legend
The crown jewel of Ford Motor Co., the Mustang is one of the most-coveted vehicles in the world. As one of the very few who have served as its Chief Engineer, we will discuss the daunting task of gaining credibility and acceptance from the Mustang’s cult-like customer base, and subsequently leading a team to develop a highly anticipated 50th Anniversary product. The role of the Chief engineer is to lead the team through the bureaucracy, uncertainty and unchartered waters. We will discuss the characteristics of a leader in challenging the norm, setting the vision and unlocking the potential of his or her employees.
We will also discuss how transferring the skills of the Mustang’s Chief Engineer enabled the creation of the Ford Performance organization. FP not only created Ford’s strongest lineup of performance vehicles, but also was responsible for Ford’s triumphant return to LeMans, where its GT beat Ferrari for the first time in 50 years.
Teaching Lean Thinking in Product Development
We thought lean was a toolkit to optimize processes. Then we learned we had to create a system of people, processes and tools. Next, we figured out that lean is a way of thinking, a practical approach to scientific thinking. The thinking way is taught within Toyota as Toyota Business Practices and On-the-Job Development. More recently, Mike Rother has been teaching it as the improvement kata and coaching kata. We will review the Toyota model of designing to meet a challenge through iterative learning and discuss ways to develop this thinking way in your people.
LPPD for a Complex System: Mobility 2.0
We are making progress in applying LPPD concepts to an ever expanding range of discrete goods and services. But what about complex systems involving many goods and services, which may themselves be clean sheet designs? The design of Mobility 2.0 -- autonomous vehicles using low carbon-fuels as shared assets in a digitally connected system – is a fascinating current example. Who is the chief engineer? Where is the concept paper? How can concurrent engineering with set-based design work? The challenge for LPPD of designing large systems will be the focus of Jim Womack’s plenary presentation.
James P. Womack
The Clinical Design and Innovation Program of Michigan Medicine
In this session, Medical Director Lawrence Marentette, MD, will describe how a cross-functional team of project managers, industrial and operational engineers, and data, financial, and business analysts used LPPD thinking as an approach to reduce unnecessary admissions, improve ambulatory care access, and develope care pathways. It also is starting a new cost accounting strategy. Working with lean product and process coaches and practitioners, the team is reinventing new ways to improve its analyses of programs and conditions.
Build a Workplace People Love - Just add Joy
Create an intentional team culture focused on the business value of joy and unleash the human energy and the results you always knew were possible.
In this talk, Rich Sheridan will explore what an intentionally joyful culture must choose as its focus, what joy looks like, feels like, how it is organized. Along the way, you will be confronted by paradoxical approaches of how workplace noise increases productivity, how two people at one computer outperforms hero-based organizations 10-to-1, how rigor and discipline emanate from a shared-belief system, how transparency conquers fear, how all of the disciplines you study including agile, lean, and six sigma when done well are really about building human relationships at the intersections of business and technology, between project management and software development, between development and design and how quality can be a natural result of a team built on trust.
This is not a theoretical talk, but rather a talk built from well over a decade of experience of leading a team focused on "the business value of joy".
The power of TRIZ (Theory of Inventive Problem Solving) is to transform design contradictions into opportunity for innovation through a systematic way of thinking out of the box. Every system embeds one or more (technical) contradictions that are challenging for designers and engineers to overcome. For example, the ability to be as strong and as light as possible at the same time, or to be fast and easy to control, or a smaller size with a higher capacity.
During this session the participants will face real design challenges and will learn how TRIZ principles easily guide problem solving initiatives towards innovative solutions, able to exceed customer expectations. Moreover, the session will give insights on how to use TRIZ within A3 thinking and how to approach contradictions in order to support and address set-based design initiatives.
What you will learn:
- What is TRIZ and systematic innovation and how to apply it
- How TRIZ supports problem solving within A3 thinking initiatives
- How to address your system contradictions and how to innovate
- How to systematically cover knowledge gaps and how to address open ended problems
- How to address innovation efforts and how to increase their outcomes by prioritizing innovation areas impact
Solar Turbines (a Caterpillar Company), one of the largest producers of industrial gas turbines in the world, has a history of continuously improving the value it delivers to customers. After successfully implementing lean principles in manufacturing, the company has brought them to the office and product development.
Join them for this reflection on their journey, which has yielded huge improvements in development velocity, product cost management, quality, and product/program financial success. You’ll hear about real challenges, failures, and LPPD experiments, including value stream mapping, front loading, obeya rooms, and – their best experiment to date -- workflow management to level work and improve value-stream flow.
You’ll also learn about the cultural values and associated behaviors that sustain process gains and some simple rules to make workflow management a success and your biggest competitive advantage.
Solar’s workflow management system has achieved:
- Clarity and alignment of priorities, internally and with customers (no more priority meetings, hallway lobbying, or associated start/stop madness)
- Elimination of “hidden factories” (over processing, working on the wrong project) velocity gains (improvements exceeding 30%!)
- Reduced work queues and process bottlenecks
- More engaged and empowered work groups
When organizations start experimenting with lean thinking in product and process development they often start with visual management – usually an obeya. Obeya is literally a “big room,” but it can be so much more. Come to this session to discuss ways to effectively use your obeya to create products customers want.
In this interactive session you will learn about:
- Obeya purpose and process
- Management system
- Cross-functional integration
- Problem solving
- Alignment to product vision
- How to transform your culture using an obeya
- Common obeya failure modes and how to avoid them
- Tips to effectively use obeya
As a mega-variability company, Zingerman's Mail Order, does over half of its annual revenue in a single month. Far from the predicable and stable output of a Toyota plant, Mail Order's volume can swing thousands of shipments in a single week. In order to process 11 months of volume in four weeks, Mail Order hires over 450 temporary employees, reduces its standard takt by 75% and sustains that pace for 96 - 108 hours in a row during 4, week long, sprints.
Thoughtful, people oriented work design, visual management, standard operating procedures and a culture of staff lead continuous improvement have allowed Mail Order to thrive. Despite a doubling of revenues, Mail Order hires half as many holiday staff as 10 years ago, while occupying the same 24,000ft facility.
During this session you will hear about how Zingerman's Mail Order took a deep company culture of staff empowerment and servant leadership and parlayed it into a process improvement success story. By ensuring that processes serve people, rather than people serving processes, Mail Order has increased capacity, staff engagement and profit. With lots of anecdotes and stories from the frontline, Tom Root, will share how focusing on the people has allowed Mail Order to grow in an industry where increasingly "the process" IS the product.
By the end of this session you'll learn how Zingerman’s Mail Order:
* accommodates mega-variability by applying lean thinking
* balances the needs of the staff with the needs of the organization
* lives their management philosophy through the practice of Lean
Finding the best solution for our customers’ needs is a challenging aspect of product development. There are many conflicting needs and tradeoffs that must be considered to ensure we maximize customer value while achieving our company’s goals. Lean Product & Process Development (LPPD) helps you meet these conflicting challenges by front-loading the development process to thoroughly explore alternative solutions while there is a maximum design space.
In this session, you will compare and contrast the differences between traditional point-based design and LPPD set-based design approaches. Through an interactive exercise, you will experience the quantitative and qualitative benefits of set-based design. We will also discuss the impact of point-based versus set-based design on team dynamics. In addition, we’ll analyze a case study on the application of set-based concurrent engineering.
In this session, you’ll learn:
- What is set-based concurrent engineering methodology
- What are the benefits of set-based design through a hands-on exercise
- How to get started in applying set-based principles in your product development system
Tired of seeing the same problems over and over? Frustrated by an inability to really leverage what you learn during a development project? Not seeing the desired improvement in lead-time or innovation from project to project despite your organization’s best efforts? If so, this session is for you!
Based on a manuscript by Allen Ward, this session will introduce you to a powerful knowledge management approach he called “visible knowledge.” Visible knowledge increases innovative capacity by helping developers “see” and understand the design space, creating a currency for real dialog about design limits and trade-offs, and forming an objective foundation for cross-functional collaboration. Visible knowledge can be retained, reused, and expanded in future projects, enabling ever increasing performance improvement. Through a combination of presentation and interactive activities, you will:
- Understand the central role of knowledge management in lean product/process development.
- Explore simple, practical ways to apply a visible knowledge mindset.
- Learn a practical approach to generating visible knowledge through cause-effect diagrams and trade-off curves.
Lean thinking has not found the interest in R&D organizations or in companies trying to innovate their processes that it deserves. At Goodyear we found that there may be an even higher reward by applying lean to R&D and innovation creation processes than there is in manufacturing. Other myths that we have refuted are that lean stifles creativity and that lean principles proven successful in manufacturing do not apply in an R&D environment.
Goodyear releases 1,500 new products globally every year. Thanks the lean initiative, they are now all on time, on target and meet the business case (which often specifies the profitability of the project). This session shows how to apply lean thinking in an R&D or an innovation creating organization and illustrates the principles with examples from the Goodyear transformation and other companies.
- How lean should be applied to R&D and innovation creation
- The 2 different processes: the creative part and the execution
- Some key features of both processes
- How Goodyear releases 1,500 new products every year (this process received the AME OpEx award in 2016)
- How to go engage people in a major change like this
Lean Product and Process Development (LPPD) is about creating profitable value streams. This includes designing all of the steps required to deliver your product or service to your customer with maximum value and minimum waste. Upon launch of a new product, nearly 80% of the cost--and hence waste--has already been locked-in by the product and process designs. Unfortunately, many leaders choose to focus the majority of their improvement efforts post-launch. This session explores how to focus lean process design energy within the development system. The session is targeted at individuals who are involved in the design or operation of new products and services.
- Failure modes that get in the way of Lean Process Creation with new product development
- Key enablers for Lean Process Creation that will enable successful structuring to increase value and avoid waste
- The Iterative actions and framework that make up Lean Process Creation
- An example of the performance gap that will be closed with effective Lean Process Creation
- Action Steps for Moving the Organization Forward on “Monday morning”
Inspired by the speaker's use of the MIT Beer Game in university teaching, The Craft Beer Game presents the challenges of leading development in organizations with a student-active exercise. The exercise scenario is built around a regional craft beer producer that introduces several new beers each year. Through decisions to select development projects, participants are introduced to the challenges of leading the innovation system.
You will begin with a traditional product development process and participants typically apply traditional thinking resulting in poor performance. Periodically the exercise is paused to assess the participant dashboards and briefly introduce Lean Thinking ways of leading innovation. Topics covered include Innovation Performance, Strategy and Selection, Balance and Flow, and Capacity and Discipline.
The exercise concludes with presentation of development as a dynamic system and how Systems Thinking applied with Lean Thinking principles can produce superior innovation system performance. Conclusions are based on the experience of the instructor learning the hard way while leading a development process for 10 years as well as research that supports Lean methods in managing innovation. The intended learning outcome is that development is a process with characteristics fundamentally different than typical business processes where Lean principles can address system dynamics for improved development performance.
This hands-on session is designed for any level of experience. Inexperienced participants will be introduced to how Lean Thinking supports improved performance. Experienced participants should recognize the application of Lean approaches and logically apply them to their development systems.
- Development Performance
- Project Selection
- Portfolio Balance
- Pipeline Flow
- Development Capacity
- Systems Thinking & Lean Thinking
The summit is designed to be the best networking venue in the Lean Community by providing formal and informal ways for you to connect with counterparts facing the same challenges as you:
- Networking Happy Hour (continue conversations and compare notes after the first day)
- Networking Breaks (30 minutes to allow time for a phone call, cup of coffee, and conversation)
- Lunch Roundtables (attendee-led discussions on topics you've told us are important to you)