Katie Labedz on “How to Improve Absolutely Anything”


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My guest for Episode #408 of the Lean Blog Interviews podcast is Katie Labedz, the author of the new book How to Improve Absolutely Anything: Continuous Improvement in Your Home, Office and Family Life.

Katie Labedz is a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt with over 20 years of experience implementing continuous improvement solutions within non-manufacturing and manufacturing environments.  Her company is Learning to Lean. Katie also has her Master's certification in instructional design, her Project Management Professional (PMP) certification through PMI and is a certified instructor/facilitator through Langevin.

Topics and questions in today's episode include:

  • What's your Lean origin story?
  • What did you learn moving from IT to manufacturing to working with Lean in office settings?
  • How is Lean different with “carpet walkers”?
  • How do you define “continuous improvement”?
  • When do you need to take a break from improvement to stabilize things?
  • Lessons from working on virtual improvement this year?
  • Why write the book?
  • Favorite practical tips and tricks (Lean methods at home) from the book?
  • Lessons about motivations and “resistance to change”?

The podcast is sponsored by Stiles Associates, now in their 30th year of business. They are the go-to Lean recruiting firm serving the manufacturing, private equity and healthcare industries. Learn more.

This podcast is part of the #LeanCommunicators network

You can listen to the audio or watch the video, below. I hope you enjoy it like I did.

Video of the Episode:

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This podcast is part of the Lean Communicators network… check it out!


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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. His latest book is Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. He also published the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.

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