Steve Spear


Senior Lecturer

 

Spear is a well-recognized expert on how select organizations manage complex development, design, and delivery efforts to create unmatched rates of internally generated, broad based improvement and innovation. Resulting leadership on reliability, agility, cost, quality, safety, and so forth produces sustainable competitive advantage even in the face of intense rivalry. Spear's book, The High Velocity Edge: How Market Leaders Leverage Operational Excellence to Beat the Competition (McGraw Hill, 2010), has won several awards including the Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing Research and the Philip Crosby Medal from the American Society for Quality.

His articles, “Decoding the DNA of the Toyota Production System” and “Learning to Lead at Toyota” have been widely read and have become part of the lean manufacturing canon. Spear's “Fixing Healthcare from the Inside, Today,” won a McKinsey Award as one of the best Harvard Business Review articles in 2005 and his fourth Shingo Prize for Research Excellence. He has published in Annals of Internal Medicine and other medical journals as well and has had op-ed pieces in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Fortune.com, and Industry Week. He has been interviewed on Bloomberg TV and radio and on CBS News and quoted in a number of magazines and newspapers and has spoken to audiences as diverse as the Association for Manufacturing Excellence and the Institute of Medicine.

As a consultant and advisor, Spear works actively with organizations to develop their capacity for high speed sustained improvement and innovation. He played an integral role in developing the Alcoa Business System, which has been credited with saving hundreds of millions of dollars in Alcoa's annual report, and the Perfecting Patient Care system of the Pittsburgh Regional Healthcare Initiative, which helped raise quality and safety of care in area hospitals and which has been credited with saving many lives and much money. His clients include organizations such as Lockheed Martin, John Deere, Intel, Intuit, Brigham Women's Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. He consulted for the MacArthur Foundation, and works with Toyota on supplier development efforts. A senior lecturer, both in MIT's Sloan School of Management and also the Engineering Systems Division, Spear teaches a course about high velocity organizations in the Leaders for Global Operations Program and in several executive education programs. He supports the Institute for Healthcare Improvement efforts as a senior fellow.

Spear’s academic degrees include a doctorate from Harvard Business School, masters degrees – in management and mechanical engineering – from MIT, and a bachelors degree in economics from Princeton. He worked for the investment bank Prudential-Bache, the US Congress Office of Technology Assessment, and the University of Tokyo, and he taught at Harvard Business School for six years. He and his wife, Miriam, an architect, live in Brookline MA with their three children.


Faculty Media

  • competencia e innovacion en el mercadeo 2

    In part 2 of his interview with Noel Capon, Steven Spear shares his thoughts on competition and innovation in marketing.


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  • competencia e inovacion en el mercadeo 1

    Steven Spear discusses competition and innovation in marketing


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  • Spear Interview Part Four: Daring to Question

    Lakshman Swamy sits down with Steven Spear, Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and author of the The High Velocity...


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  • Spear Interview Part Three: The High Velocity Edge

    Lakshman Swamy sits down with Steven Spear, Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and author of the The High Velocity...


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  • Spear Interview Part Two: Learning from Gas Stations

    Lakshman Swamy sits down with Steven Spear, Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and author of the The High Velocity...


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  • Spear Interview Part One: Passing the Baton

    Lakshman Swamy sits down with Steven Spear, Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management, a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and author of the The High Velocity...


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  • Dr. Steven Spear, LEAN Expert, MIT Sloan School of Management

    Spear addresses the potential LEAN systems have for improving cost containment in health care, while improving outcomes.


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  • Achieving the High Velocity Edge in System Design, Deployment and Operations

    A select few organizations dominate their competition on every conceivable measure: time to market, quality, system reliability, security, and so forth. They do so by creating and sustaining a...


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  • The New Competitive Advantage: Not Leaning In, But Leaning Forward

    The most successful organizations are the ones creating high value with their products, in less time, using less effort. These organizations, according to Steven Spear, Senior Lecturer at MIT Sloan...


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  • Don't Be A Zombie Organization!

    Be sure to check out MIT Sloan Professor Steven Spear's program, Creating High Velocity Organizations. Zombies are all the entertainment rage these days—mindless brutes in relentless pursuit...


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Contact Information

Office: E40-315
Phone: 617-281-7620
Fax:
Email: sspear@mit.edu
Website:
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Teaches In

Creating High Velocity Organizations Mar 19-20, 2015 | May 28-29, 2015 | Oct 27-28, 2015