In this week's 5 Questions we meet Ron Pereira, who many of you follow over at Lean Six Sigma Academy.
1. Who are you, what organization are you with, and what are your current lean-oriented activities?
Hello Evolving Excellence readers! My name is Ron Pereira and I currently wear many lean related hats. During the day I work as a director of manufacturing for a $5 billion company in the flow control industry. I also maintain a blog focused on leadership and all things related to continuous improvement. I started LSS Academy as a small hobby but now find myself writing to several thousand daily readers which is beyond humbling. Most recently I helped co-found a company called Gemba Academy. I suppose the best way to describe Gemba Academy is to say we're focused on improving the improvement learning world!
2. How, when, and why did you get introduced to lean and what fueled and fuels the passion?
Hmm, good question. I've been dabbling with continuous improvement methods for 15+ years but I suppose my formal introduction to lean came when I worked at Nokia 10 or so years ago. I started reading books on my own and then we hired Gemba Research to help us move beyond our six sigma roots. It was the best thing that ever happened to me!
3. In your opinion what is the most powerful aspect of lean?
Easy. The thinking behind the system. The tools, honestly, are easy. But the thinking behind the tools… that is where the true power lies.
4. In your opinion what is the most misunderstood or unrecognized aspect of lean?
5. In your opinion what is the biggest opportunity for lean in today's world? How can that be accomplished?
Our children. We need to change the way our kids think and solve problems. We need to do our best to never grow tired of hearing them ask why again and again. I have 4 kids so trust me when I say this is not easy. But if we're able to find a way to keep our kids asking why and thinking and challenging the status quo our world will be a far better place. Oh, and if you ask my 6, 4, or 2 year old what "point of use" means they'll gladly explain it to you. You see, we practice it every night at the clothes hamper! I grant dispensation to my 6 month old for now… but in a few months she needs to get on board! ;-)