Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Straight Talk from Wiremold’s CEO

I mentioned last week that I had a mind-stretching time at Productivity Inc’s conference on Lean and TPM on October 10-11.

One highlight was an hour-long presentation from Art Byrne, the just-retired CEO of Wiremold. My notes were full and I wondered how I could communicate what I learned. Then my colleage, Gary Stewart, from the Wabash Valley Lean Network passed these links to me. If you want to stretch your mind about what is possible in manufacturing, go to these pages and read. Then go reflect on it. These two interview summaries contain virtually all of Art’s content that he shared at the conference.

After spending a week in a kaizen event at Wiremold in August, I can tell you, this is the real deal. Then, go take some action. Email me with your comments.

From The Society of Manufacturing Engineers

Wiremold is a rare company. It has achieved national and international prominence not so much for the products it makes, but for the manner in which it makes them. Under the 10-year stewardship of Art Byrne, the company was one of the first in the U.S. to embrace the production and management techniques of the Toyota Production System. Since then, his company's sales have grown by more than a factor of four to $460 million, or by more than 38 percent per year. Its operating margin exceeds 12 percent. It continues to double inventory turns every two years and has improved quality by at least a factor of 10. In this article excerpt from Manufacturing News, Byrne offers some sound advice on what it takes to succeed and fail at lean.

Click here for interview summary.

From Manufacturing News

This is a longer interview from Art…prepare to blow away many of your preconceptions.
Click here for full interview text.

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