Blog Contributors

Here are links to posts by Lean Blog authors and contributors (see all Guest Blog posts here).

Founder and Main Contributor:

Other Authors

Ryan McCormackRyan McCormack (139)

Ryan is an operational excellence professional with over 18 years experience practicing continuous improvement in healthcare, insurance, food manufacturing, and aerospace. He is an avid student of the application of Lean principles in work and life to create measurably better value.

Jamie FlinchbaughJamie Flinchbaugh (114)

Jamie Flinchbaugh is an accomplished Entrepreneur, Senior Executive, and Board Member with more than 20 years of success spanning finance, manufacturing, automotive, and management consulting. Leveraging extensive operational experience, Jamie is an invaluable asset for a company seeking expert guidance with process improvements, lean strategies, and leadership coaching in order to transform operations, reduce costs, and drive profitability. His areas of expertise include continuous improvement, entrepreneurship, coaching and training, process transformation, business strategy, and organizational design.

Luke Van DongenLuke Van Dongen (60)

Luke, an auto industry engineering veteran, blogged here from 2005 to 2006.

Andy WagnerAndy Wagner (25)

Andy Wagner works for a major aerospace company. Andy blogged here regularly from 2007 to 2010 and still contributes occasionally.

Dan MarkovitzDan Markovitz (25)

Dan Markovitz is president of Markovitz Consulting, a firm that radically improves operational speed and efficiency by applying lean concepts to knowledge work.

He is a faculty member at the Lean Enterprise Institute and teaches at the Stanford University Continuing Studies Program. He also lectures on A3 thinking at the Ohio State University’s Fisher School of Business.

Dan is a frequent speaker and presenter at conferences, and has consulted to organizations as diverse as Camelbak, Clif Bar, Abbott Vascular, WL Gore & Associates, Intel, the City of Menlo Park, and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

His book, A Factory of One, was honored with a Shingo Research Award in 2013.

Dan has also published articles in the Harvard Business Review blog, Quality Progress, Industry Week magazine, Reliable Plant magazine, and Management Services Journal, among other magazines. All of these articles are available for download on the Resources page.

Earlier in his career, he held management positions in product marketing at Sierra Designs, Adidas, CNET and Asics Tiger, where he worked in sales, product marketing, and product development. He also has experience as an entrepreneur, having founded his own skateboarding footwear company.

Dan lived in Japan for four years and is fluent in Japanese. He holds a BA from Wesleyan University and an MBA from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

Mark EdmondsonMark Edmondson (19)

Mark Edmondson is passionate about achieving rapid, breakthrough results during a company’s lean transformation. With 30 years of front-line experience while working with over 80 companies, Mr. Edmondson developed a philosophy of helping companies create a culture that sustains operational excellence through low cost yet transformative changes.

Scott McDuffeeScott McDuffee (12)

Scott is a Lean Change Leader who has worked in multiple manufacturing sectors. He blogged primarily about his steps taken to investigate switching into healthcare in 2009.

avatar for Christina KachChristina Kach (12)

Christina Kach is a Senior Business Analyst on the Continuous Improvement team for a financial services company in Boston, Ma. Christina held her first Lean position as in intern in 2006. Since then she has continued to seek out varied roles of increasing responsibility and actively pursues further Lean education. She recently held the role of Continuous Improvement Lead for a Government Defense Company based in Massachusetts, focusing on Lean implementation and process improvement in a manufacturing environment.

Paul CritchleyPaul Critchley (10)

Paul W. Critchley founded New England Lean Consulting after enjoying a successful career implementing Lean Principles throughout the Automotive, Medical Device and Aerospace industries. He is co-author of “The Whole Professional, A Collection of Essays to Help You Achieve a Full and Satisfying Life”. He can be reached at

Adam ZakAdam Zak (6)

My name is Adam Zak. I help companies recruit truly exceptional Lean leaders.

I had been doing retained executive search work for a number of years when I decided to break out on my own and create Adams & Associates International in 1990. Working for a few years with a couple of the very largest search firms had convinced me that I could add significantly more value and provide infinitely better service and quality to my clients from a smaller and more focused and responsive platform. Plus, even as a big-firm partner, I had never really felt much like my own boss. That changed when my name – today Adam Zak Executive Search – went on the door.

avatar for Liz GuthridgeLiz Guthridge (5)

Liz turns blue-sky thinking into greener-pastures actions. Helps leaders improve by applying neuroscience, behavior design and lean communications.

Chad WaltersChad Walters (5)

Chad Walters is a Lean consultant and owner of Lean Blitz Consulting in Augusta, Georgia, a firm focused on continuous improvement for small businesses and sports organizations. He has run projects for the Atlanta Braves, the Salvation Army, Automatic Data Processing (ADP), Eaton Corporation, The Dannon Company, and the South Bend Silver Hawks among other companies.

Joseph E. SwartzJoseph E. Swartz (5)

Joseph E. Swartz is the Administrative Director of Business Transformation for Franciscan St. Francis Health of Indianapolis, Indiana. He has been leading continuous improvement efforts for over 20 years, including seven years in healthcare, and has led more than 200 Lean and Six Sigma improvement projects. Joseph is the co-author of Seeing David in the Stone and was previously an instructor at the University of Wisconsin. Joseph earned an MS in Management from Purdue University as a Krannert Scholar for academic excellence. Joseph is co-author of the Shingo Award-winning book Healthcare Kaizen and The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen.

Paul SerafinoPaul Serafino (5)

Paul's mission is to provide Lean and Continuous Improvement change agents with the tools they need to influence up and accelerate real change in the absence of the right support structure. Paul has held positions in the high-tech arena, the old-school manufacturing space, and the Lean training and consulting world. He taps into these experiences to share what works, what's possible, and how to make it happen in very simple, highly effective ways. He writes and coaches with the goal of helping creative thinkers find the best path to launching their improvement ideas into action. You can learn more at his blog “Accelerated Journey.”

David MeierDavid Meier (3)

David Meier is the founder and president of Lean Associates, Inc., and is the co-author with Jeffrey Liker of the best-selling books, The Toyota Way Fieldbook and Toyota Talent: Developing Your People the Toyota Way.

David learned the Toyota Production System as one of the first leaders hired at Toyota’s Georgetown, KY, facility where he worked in the plastic molding department. Over a 10-year period in Kentucky and Japan, he received training and mentoring in TPS principles including full-time coaching by TPS experts.

As a trainer and speaker on how to launch and sustain lean transformations, David has worked in North America, Russia, Europe, Brazil, and Asia for a variety of service and manufacturing industries, including healthcare, food processing, automotive, aerospace, wood and plastic products, chemical processing, metal machining, fabricating, welding, and assembly operations. He currently helps companies implement lean principles through Lean Associates, Inc.

Bill HanoverBill Hanover (3)

Bill Hanover, from

avatar for Ankit PatelAnkit Patel (3)

The Lean Way Consulting is led by Managing Partner, Ankit (ahn-kit) Patel. Ankit’s personal vision is to help people, organizations and communities flourish by using the proven thinking and methodology associated with Lean Transformations.

With his primary focus on companies between $1 million and $100 million in revenue, Ankit has worked with companies in a wide spectrum of industries from high tech to healthcare.

avatar for Naida GrundenNaida Grunden (3)

A professional writer for over 20 years, Naida Grunden has spent the last decade documenting Lean/Toyota improvements in the health care setting. Ms. Grunden also shares an interest in applying what has been learned in aviation safety and reliability to healthcare.

In addition to writing numerous general and academic articles, Ms. Grunden wrote the book, The Pittsburgh Way to Efficient Healthcare: Improving Patient Care Using Toyota Based Methods, which describes the work of the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative (PRHI), a small nonprofit organization, which began in 2001 to pilot Lean experiments in competing hospitals across Southwestern Pennsylvania. The effort produced some of the first genuine, on-the-ground evidence that a Toyota-based industrial model could work in health care.

Wiljeana GloverWiljeana Glover (3)

Wiljeana Glover is an Assistant Professor of Technology, Operations, and Information Management. She currently teaches technology and operations management to undergraduate students.

Prof. Glover studies healthcare and non-profit organizations to understand how continuous improvement approaches, coordination practices, service innovation, and complexity influence service delivery. She explores these topics via research and teaching partnerships, including with the Clalit Health Systems-Israel (in collaboration with the Israel Institute of Technology) and the Greater Boston Food Bank (in collaboration with the Toyota Production System Support Center-TSSC).

avatar for Dr. Les MudaDr. Les Muda (3)

Les Muda, MD FACHE FART FACP helps heal patients with the healing power of laughter – that and a large toolbox full of orthopedic surgery instruments. After graduating from Hartford Medical School, the Ohio College of Clown Arts, and the improv studies program at the Second City (Kankakee extension campus), Dr. Muda has practiced for the last 30 years within the Kaizen Continuente health system near Las Vegas. Dr. Muda occasionally performs as an opening act at numerous casino show rooms and as a featured performer at the Funny Bone in Boulder City, NV. Dr. Muda asks that you not make cheap jokes about an orthopedic surgeon performing at the Funny Bone. He has heard it before. His time is valuable.

Graced with a soaring intellect and world-class humility, Dr. Muda has never once forgotten a joke, let he still uses checklists to prevent surgical errors and to prepare for his standup act, including his upcoming 4-city tour of Manitoba. He was host of a TV pilot called “So You Think You Can Operate?” that might still be picked up as a mid-season replacement on NBC and he is also pitching the show “Hospital Nightmares” to Gordon Ramsay and FOX.

Dr. Muda has four unflinching Toyota-based principles in his act and his life:

perfect quality
continuos improvement and
respect for humor.

Dean BlissDean Bliss (3)

Dean Bliss is a now-retired Lean healthcare practitioner.

Drew LocherDrew Locher (3)

Drew is currently Managing Director for Change Management Associates. CMA provides various Business Improvement Consulting and Organizational Development services to industrial and service organizations.

In 2004, Drew Locher co-authored book titled, “The Complete Lean Enterprise – Value Stream Mapping for Office and Administrative Processes”. In April 2005, the book won the prestigious Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing. He published “Value Stream Mapping for Lean Development – a How-to Guide to Streamline Time to Market” in 2008. His book “Lean Office & Service Simplified: the Definitive How-to Guide” was a 2012 Shingo Prize recipient. His latest book is titled “Unleashing the Power of 3P”.

Duke RoheDuke Rohe (3)

Duke Rohe currently works at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center as a Quality Improvement Education Specialist. Mr. Rohe graduated from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering. He is a Life Fellow member of the Healthcare Information Systems Society and has achieved its Quality Management Award, Outstanding Fellows Service Award, and Chapter Leadership Award. He authored two chapters in the Management Engineering guidebook, co-authored a book on Quality Tools, has co-authored four books on organizational change and is on his mother's top ten list.

Michael LombardMichael Lombard (2)

Michael Lombard, MBA is a seasoned leader in healthcare performance improvement. His mission is to help healthcare systems deliver ever-increasing value to patients and the community by improving quality and reducing cost. His approach is to get results by facilitating process improvement while increasing the improvement capabilities of the people in our organizations, in an effort to build cultures of continuous improvement.

His goal for blogging is to explore ideas and continuously improve his understanding of kaizen in healthcare settings.

Lean Pathways, Inc.Lean Pathways, Inc. (2)

Lean Pathways helps progressive organizations implement the Lean Business System for breakthrough performance.

Lean Pathways has developed a proven transformation model that roots Lean thinking in all areas of the organization. We have supported successful transformations in manufacturing, health care, construction, the process and service industries.

Tony MilianTony Milian (1)

Throughout a 12-year career at multiple Johnson & Johnson operating companies, Tony learned how to successfully apply Lean Management concepts to improve the delivery and quality of health care in numerous sectors. As an entrepreneur, Tony has utilized Lean Management concepts to help foster a culture of employee driven continuous improvement at more than 400 Eye Care practices across the United States and Canada. His approach has generated significant revenue growth, cost reductions, and operational efficiency within these practices, while also improving staff accountability and engagement.

Tom GormleyTom Gormley (1)

Tom is a lean healthcare coach, trainer, and manager with experience in multiple systems in the New England area, including Franciscan Childrens, South Shore Hospital, VA New England Healthcare, and UMass Memorial Health Care. At Franciscan currently, he leads the development of lean thinking and continuous improvement activities for the pediatric care system which specializes in integrated post-acute care, primary care, dental care, surgery, a wide range of outpatient therapies, and education.

Tom received an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management and a BA in economics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He also studied healthcare industry innovation and lean thinking for an additional year at MIT in 2009, and earned a Lean Black Belt at UMass Memorial in 2011.

Nathalie KhodrNathalie Khodr (1)

Nathalie Khodr has been involved in Continuous Improvement since 2000, and is a passionate advocate of using Lean and Six Sigma methodology in manufacturing and healthcare. She has worked at Eaton Corporation, Saint Gobain and MD Anderson. More recently, she was responsible for deploying a Continuous Improvement program from the ground up at the Center for Health Care Services (San Antonio, TX). She is currently working as an independent consultant. Between assignments, she enjoys reading historical novels, hiking all around the US, and cooking international food among other things. She has a Bachelor’s in Chemical Engineering (McGill University, Canada), a Master’s in Business Administration (Texas A&M). Nathalie is also a Six Sigma Black Belt and a Certified Quality Engineer (ASQ).

Jason MorinJason Morin (1)

Jason Morin is Director of Continuous Improvement for a $15 billion global logistics and transportation company. He specializes in the development and deployment of world-class solutions, tools, and performance programs for distribution centers and warehouses for Fortune 500 companies. He is a strong advocate for and experienced practitioner in the application of Lean and Theory of Constraints to distribution centers and across the broader supply chain. He also serves as a Lean coach and teaches fundamental Lean principles and concepts to warehouse managers, supervisors, and frontline workers. He has a B.S. in Industrial Management from Purdue University, a M.S. in Operations Management from Georgia State University, and is a Six Sigma Green Belt.

Steve HoeftSteve Hoeft (1)

Steve Hoeft, BSIE and OR, MBA, PMP

SVP, Chief of Operations Excellence, Baylor Scott & White Healthcare
Lean Six Sigma Master Coach and Author

Steve serves as the chief servant and builder of Operations Excellence for 48,000 leaders and staff at Baylor Scott & White Health, the largest non-profit system in Texas. Steve has helped leaders build a wide and deep Culture of Continuous Improvement for ten years at this growing organization, receiving national recognition for their transformation thus far.

Steve taught Lean programs at University of Michigan, and now at University of Texas-Austin. His book Stories From My Sensei won a 2011 Shingo Research and Professional Publication Award. His new book, The Power of Ideas to Transform Healthcare: Engaging Staff by Building Daily Lean Management Systems, won the same award in 2015. Steve served under great sensei at Delta Kogyo and Johnson Controls (under Toyota).

Steve has a dual B.S. degree in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research from Wayne State University. He also has an MBA from the University of Toledo. Steve is a Certified Project Manager Professional (PMP) through the Project Management Institute. His most important roles are husband, father and grandfather.

Shrikant KalegaonkarShrikant Kalegaonkar (1)

Shrikant Kalegaonkar has worked as a quality engineer in various companies across multiple industries including semiconductors, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and energy storage. He has an MS and a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY. He was formerly an ASQ-Certified Quality Engineer (CQE), and ASQ-Certified Quality Auditor (CQA). He writes at his blog, Iterations and can be found on Twitter as @shrikale.

Kay KendallKay Kendall (1)

I love working with people who are as passionate about excellence as I am. For more than 20 years, the Baldrige Criteria for Performance Excellence has been my mental model for how organizations can transform from being good to being “award worthy.” Using the Baldrige Excellence Framework, I work with organizations across all sectors, large and small, to help senior leaders create focus and alignment, and to engage their workforce to achieve exceptional results.

As a Principal in BaldrigeCoach, I tailor each engagement to the unique strengths and challenges of that organization. Using proven change leadership techniques, we create a culture of continuous improvement and innovation.

I also continue to give back to the Baldrige community as a volunteer by serving as an examiner or Judge for the national program as well as many of the other Baldrige-based programs. I also serve as a technical editor and facilitate examiner training for some of these programs.

I am frequently asked to present at conferences as well as to provide customized in-house workshops. These opportunities only deepen my appreciation for all of the people engaged in making their organizations better through their commitment to excellence.

Jess OrrJess Orr (1)

Jess Orr is a continuous improvement practitioner at WestRock, a large paper and packaging company, where she helps plants foster a culture of continuous improvement and employee engagement. Her experience includes working directly for Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky. She is particularly passionate about sharing best practices across industries, which motivated her to found Yokoten Learning (

Erwin van der KooghErwin van der Koogh (1)

Erwin van der Koogh is a principal consultant at Elabor8 ( in Melbourne. His passion is in helping grow amazing organisations. Unfortunately, there is no blueprint for creating amazing companies. So, to draw inspiration to help his organisations and clients, Erwin is an active member in many improvement communities such as the Agile, Lean, Beyond Budgeting, Systems Thinking and Complexity Science movements. Erwin is currently setting up a new site: to share what he has learned in those communities and during his research of amazing companies such as Spotify, WL Gore, Buurtzorg and Svenska Handelsbanken. You can follow him on Twitter here: @evanderkoogh

Sam SelaySam Selay (1)

Tragically, Sam passed away in October 2018… His Bio: Sam Selay has been practicing lean since 2010, and has been using Lean and Six-Sigma methodology in the military, federal government, and manufacturing. He worked in the United States Marine Corps in supply chain, logistics, quality, and continuous improvement for 13 years, worked as an on-sight consultant for the Department of Defense, Defense Logistics Agency for 1.5 years with Optimize Consulting prior joining RAB Lighting as a Lean Facilitator. He has a BS in Management Studies from the University of Maryland University College, an MBA in Management and Strategy from Western Governors University. Sam is a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt from the University of San Diego. Sam is passionate about helping others solve problems, and continuously improve. He focuses on developing the problem-solving capabilities of others to drive sustainable improvements and a lean culture.

avatar for Value CaptureValue Capture (1)

Value Capture is a principles-based trusted advisory firm that partners with healthcare CEOs and senior leaders who seek to achieve and sustain operational excellence for their organizations. Employing Lean methodologies, Value Capture helps design learning and management systems that allow everyone to solve problems to root cause, at a rapid rate, while lowering costs.

Laura TownsendLaura Townsend (1)

On April 14, 2009, Laura’s Mom, Louise H. Batz went to have routine knee surgery. Her surgery was successful, but then after a series of oversights and medication errors on the General Floor, Louise went into respiratory depression and suffered an anoxic brain injury. 11 days later she passed away.

In her honor, Laura and her family created the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation (Batz Foundation) in the summer of 2009. Laura Batz Townsend and her family have turned heartbreak and loss into the promise of improved safety for hospital patients in San Antonio and across the country. Laura grew up in the medical community of San Antonio, with five physicians in her family. Laura entered the sports marketing and sports grant management field, where she has worked for 13 years. That family medical background combined with Laura’s organizational and development skills equipped her family to create the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation in the hope that others could avoid the family tragedy they experienced upon the untimely loss of their mother.

The mission of the Batz Foundation is to prevent medical errors by ensuring that patients and families have the knowledge they need for a safe hospital experience, and to support innovative advancements in patient safety. Our greatest hope is that patients, families, and caregivers will work together, as a team, to improve patient safety in our hospitals.

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