LeanBlog Podcast #30 — Bob Emiliani, Update on Wiremold

LeanBlog Podcast #30 is an interview with Bob Emiliani, President the Center for Lean Business Management and author of the books Better Thinking, Better Results and Real Lean: Understanding the Lean Management System (Volume One) (and Volume Two). Before starting the CLBM, Bob had a long career at United Technologies, Pratt & Whitney and also has degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Chemical Engineering, as well as a PhD in engineering from Brown University.

Better Thinking, Better Results, which is now out in a 2nd revised edition, has a new epilogue about Wiremold, the subject of the book, and how they have moved away from Lean after their acquisition by another company. In this podcast, we’ll talk about why that happened and what others can learn from the story, in efforts to prevent the dismantling of even the most successful of Lean transformations. You can visit his website at theclbm.com. You can visit the page for this podcast at leanpodcast.org for links to Bob and his books, including the “Real Lean” series.

Click to play:

MP3 File

If you enjoy this podcast, I hope you’ll check out the rest of the series by visiting the LeanBlog podcast main page.

Keywords and Main Points, Episode #30

  • Background on the story, via Evolving Excellence
  • Why did you update the Wiremold story and produce a second edition of your book Better Thinking, Better Results?”
  • So what happened?
  • Why didn’t Legrand value the Lean transformation that Art, his team, and the people of Wiremold did?
  • So it looks like Legrand make some mistakes.
  • What can we learn from what happened to Wiremold?

If you have feedback on the podcast, or any questions for me or my guests, you can email me at leanpodcast@gmail.com or you can call and leave a voicemail by calling the “Lean Line” at (817) 776-LEAN (817-776-5326) or contact me via Skype id “mgraban”. Please give your location and your first name. Any comments (email or voicemail) might be used in follow ups to the podcast. Click here for the main LeanBlog Podcast page with all previous episodes.

Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please scroll down to post a comment. Click here to be notified about posts via email. Learn more about Mark Graban’s speaking, writing, and consulting.

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Mark Graban's passion is creating a better, safer, more cost effective healthcare system for patients and better workplaces for all. Mark is a consultant, author, and speaker in the "Lean healthcare" methodology. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent project is an book titled Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus.


  1. Joe says

    excellent podcast, Mark, thanks for traking Bob down.

    There is much to learn from Wiremold, yet it is a sad story for the employees who had such pride in competing with low-cost foreign imports, successfully.

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