Technology, Operations, and Value Chain Management

Implementing Improvement Strategies: Practical Tools and Methods

Dates: Jul 10-11, 2014| Nov 20-21, 2014

Certificate Track: Technology, Operations, and Value Chain Management

Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Tuition: $3,300 (excluding accommodations)

Program Days (for certificate credit): 2

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This program goes beyond traditional Toyota-style tools and far beyond the factory floor, translating Toyota methods to western cultures and language, and to industries to all kinds. It provides participants with a framework for understanding what drives improvement and how it can be implemented in every function across the organization. It also helps leaders see how these methods can be applied and integrated with major business targets and work streams. It focuses on the thinking behind the tools and methods, allowing improvement to be accomplished in a rapid and natural way. The course helps managers identify the true value-added elements of work and understand the good practices that they already have in place so that they can build on their successes in a principled way rather than forcing a formulaic, programmatic approach. Inspired by extensive research on several leading companies, this program highlights the principles and practices that have enabled several such companies to consistently and significantly outperform their competitors year after year.

Join the MySloanExecEd Community Group for this program to network with past, present, and future participants.

The main purpose of this program is two-fold: one is to help participants understand how continuous improvement strategies, sustained over a long period of time, affect core business metrics and contribute to the success of the organization from bottom-up and top-down perspectives; and the other is how to change the way managers see work and their own roles as leaders in the culture of improvement. This program will enable participants to:

  • Understand the principles and approaches that drive improvement; and apply them in all areas in the context of a particular company, thus creating a tangible culture of continuous improvement
  • Implement improvement naturally in their everyday work, not from a prescribed list, but from a deep personal understanding of the principles
  • Recognize successful improvement initiatives already in place and build on them
  • Identify the true value-added aspects of work performed by individual workers and the entire organization
  • Ensure that business targets and improvement activities are tightly linked at every level
  • Develop inquiry and evidence-based problem solving skills for individuals and for organizations
  • Transform managers from controllers to enablers by leveraging the relationship between designing the work well and the engagement of employees that follows
  • Generate “pull” from within the organization for new methods of work
  • Make results (and problems) visible so that they can be addressed constructively
  • Not just remove defects, but learn how to design work correctly from the beginning

The program is intended for executives, senior managers, and leaders from every sector. Managers at any level of responsibility will benefit from this program, but it's the senior leadership that should be able to embrace and champion the principles of improvement for the benefit of the entire organization.

Here are some indicators that this program will be of value:

  • An organization's need for improvement is greater than its ability to deliver it.
  • Company executives are drowning in data, emails, and meetings, and suffering under the weight of a large number of activities and initiatives, many of which are not focused on the important issues.
  • Management behavior doesn’t change much or is actively resistant to improvement.
  • Improvement methods are not integrated into all of the company's work beyond that of the improvement department.
  • There is lack of clear understanding how improvement methodologies and value-add apply to executives, knowledge workers, and technical and administrative staff in non-factory settings.

Please note that faculty are subject to change and not all faculty teach in each session of the program.

  • Don Kieffer

    Senior Lecturer, Operations Management

    Don Kieffer is a career operations executive and an expert in Toyota methods, particularly at the leadership level. He advises on a range of areas, from large-scale improvement campaigns and specific projects to the coaching of executive leaders and their teams. His mantra is "30% improvement is a good place to start" and works in areas as diverse as IT, Product Development, Finance, Operations, and Supply Chain... ... (more)
  • Nelson Repenning

    School of Management Distinguished Professor of System Dynamics and Organization Studies
    Faculty Director, MIT Executive MBA Program

    Nelson P. Repenning is the School of Management Distinguished Professor of System Dynamics and Organization Studies at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

    Repenning currently serves as the faculty director for the MIT Executive MBA program. He is also the faculty director for the BP-MIT Operations Academy...

    ... (more)
07:45 AM - 08:30 AMRegistration and Continental Breakfast
08:30 AM - 09:00 AMIntroduction and Program Objectives
09:00 AM - 10:30 AMPrinciples of Improvement
11:00 AM - 12:00 PMPractical Applications
12:00 PM - 01:00 PMLunch
01:00 PM - 02:00 PMProblem Solving, Structured Thinking
02:00 PM - 02:30 PMProblem Solving, Practice and Live Coaching
03:00 PM - 05:30 PMPractical Applications II; The Kieffer Company Simulation
05:30 PM - 06:30 PMReception
07:45 AM - 08:30 AMContinental Breakfast
08:30 AM - 10:00 AMSystematic Management
10:30 AM - 12:00 PMPractical Systematic Management
12:00 PM - 01:00 PMLuncheon
01:00 PM - 02:30 PMScaling up: Visual Management and Collapsing Square
03:00 PM - 04:30 PMHow Do Leaders Show Up?
04:30 PM - 05:00 PMAdjournment

View Professor Repenning's Webinar

Useful Doesnt Always Mean Used

This is the recording of the webinar, Useful Doesnt Always Mean Used, presented by MIT Sloan Executive Education faculty ...more

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