Thought Leaders

Our Lean Leaders

The latest information and insights from the Lean Community’s foremost coaches and practitioners.

Michael Balle

Michael Ballé

Michael Ballé is co-author of The Gold Mine, a best-selling business novel of lean turnaround, and recently The Lean Manager, a novel of lean transformation, both published by the Lean Enterprise Institute. For the past 25 years, he has studied lean transformation and helped companies develop a lean culture. He is an engaging and colorful public […]

Josh Howell Headshot

Josh Howell

President, Executive Team Leader, Lean Enterprise Institute

Joshua Howell is president and executive team leader at the Lean Enterprise Institute (LEI). For over a decade, he has supported individuals and organizations with lean transformations for improved business performance. As a coach, he helps people become lean thinkers and practitioners through experiential learning, believing such an approach can lead to enterprise-wide improvement. Regular e-letters […]

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Karen Gaudet

Director HR and Organizational Development, Lean Enterprise Institute

Karen has over 30 years’ experience leading business, training, and developing the capability of team members and executives in rapid-growth environments.  Previously, as Regional Director of Operations at Starbucks Coffee Company, she built a consistent track record of growing the operating performance across a large area of retail stores along with the continuous improvement capabilities […]

Daniel Jones

Dan Jones

Founder and Chairman of the Lean Enterprise Academy in the U.K., Daniel T. Jones is a senior advisor to the Lean Enterprise Institute, management thought leader, and mentor on applying lean process thinking to every type of business. He is the author with James P. Womack of the influential and popular management books that describe […]

Alice Lee Headshot

Alice Lee

Senior Lean Coach

Continuous improvement leader and coach. Her responsibilities include:​ Collaborating with universities and other research communities. ​ Developing educational content in traditional and new media.​ Coaching executives in creating continuous improvement cultures.​ Lee served as vice president and special assistant to the president for business transformation at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a major teaching affiliate of Harvard […]

Jim Morgan Headshot

Jim Morgan

Senior Advisor, Lean Enterprise Institute

Jim Morgan, Ph.D. is President of EMC Network, a research and consulting firm specializing in new product and process creation. He is also Senior Advisor to the Lean Enterprise Institute for their lean product and process development initiative.  In these roles Jim has helped senior leaders from a wide variety of industries to improve their organizations development performance.  […]

Mark Reich Headshot

Mark Reich

Senior Coach, Lean Enterprise Institute

During his extensive career, Mark has led lean transformations and coached executives in various companies and business sectors. Clients include GE Appliances and Ingersoll Rand (manufacturers); Michigan Medicine and Mt. Sinai (healthcare systems); Turner Construction; Kroger (retail); Legal Seafood (hospitality); and Microsoft (software). In coaching many executive teams, Mark guides them through the Lean Leader […]

John Shook

John Shook

Chairman, Lean Global Network; Senior Advisor, Lean Enterprise Institute

John Shook learned about lean management while working for Toyota for 11 years in Japan and the U.S., helping it transfer production, engineering, and management systems from Japan to NUMMI and other operations around the world. While at Toyota’s headquarters, he became the company’s first American kacho (manager) in Japan. In the U.S., Shook joined […]

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James (Jim) Womack, PhD

Founder and Senior Advisor, Lean Enterprise Institute

Widely considered the father of the lean movement, Womack has been talking and publishing about creating value through continuous innovation around deep customer understanding for many years. In the late eighties, he and Dan Jones led MIT’s International Motor Vehicle Research Program (IMVP), which introduced the term “lean” to describe Toyota’s revolutionary management system. Based […]

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