- Hardcover: 352 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education; 1 edition (March 31, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0071833064
- ISBN-13: 978-0071833066
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #800,006 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Lean CEO: Leading the Way to World-Class Excellence Hardcover – March 31, 2015
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From the Back Cover
“an extremely readable account of how lean came to be and how top leaders can understand and harness its power for sweeping improvement. . . Anyone in top management at a company considering lean would be well served to read this book as a primer at the start of the journey.”
“Give this book to your CEO. It captures the passion, challenges, fun and impressive results achieved by pioneering Lean CEOs. Now you know what is involved, you can do so too.”
Daniel T Jones, author of The Machine that Changed the World and Lean Thinking and Chairman of the Lean Enterprise Academy in the UK
"What a triumph of a book on lean leadership―connecting the early history of lean and management theories with seminal examples of lean leaders and organizations in action! This is a unique and compelling read which will serve to inspire and guide."
Amir Dan Rubin, President and CEO, Stanford Health Care, Stanford University
“Finally in this book we learn the lesson so often missed. Lean is a total enterprise approach to adaptation and prosperity that must be understood and owned by the CEO.”
Jeffrey K. Liker, Professor, University of Michigan, and author of The Toyota Way
“Few books get into the hearts and minds of successful CEOs like Stoller’s does! Read this and learn what leading from the top truly means.”
Karen Martin, President, The Karen Martin Group, and co-author of Value Stream Mapping
“The Lean CEO allows the reader to join executive leaders as they take you through their journey of learning. Hear their lessons while they were knee-deep in the hands-on process of leadership, change, and implementation – with all the bumps, bruises, and successes along the way.”
Jim Huntzinger, President and Founder, Lean Frontiers
About the Author
Jacob Stoller is a writer and facilitator specializing in communication between experts and outsiders in areas such as Lean management, information technology, accounting, and engineering.
Top customer reviews
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Sadly this reviewer has seen and heard about a lot of poor, half-hearted Lean implementations over the years. This book manages to inject a bit of enthusiasm and respect back to Lean. For those who have already went along their Lean journey this book would be a good guide to help confirm you are doing things the right way. For those who are yet to take their first Lean steps, this book might focus your mind and help you deal with a sea of bulls*** and bravado that can come along, should you have picked the wrong “guru” to lead the process.
What was particularly great about this book is that the author has conducted many in-depth interviews with CEOs who have successfully introduced Lean as a corporate-wide management system. The move was not plain selling for every company, yet the trials and tribulations have been worth it, with the book giving a mass of practical advice for Lean and non-Lean companies alike.
The author notes (obliquely) the identity problems Lean can face, saying: “Most people … see Lean as merely a set of tactical methods and most organisations that practice Lean do so superficially. Typically, a company might undertake a series of Lean projects to reduce costs, cut down on defects, or solve a bottleneck in a manufacturing process. These isolated attempts rarely result in real change and invariably lead to the abandonment of Lean for the next flavour of the month. Lean's true potential to build world-class performance depends on a commitment to continuous improvement that involves every worker in the organisation and requires uncommon discipline and persistence. The basic tenets of Lean, moreover, challenge many aspects of traditional management theory and call for a mindset that is foreign to most executives.”
Hear hear! One problem is that anyone can set themselves up as a Lean guru – this reviewer included – and spout enough mumbo-jumbo that vaguely sounds credible or part of a “system” and get away with it, especially in smaller companies. Inflexible adherence to something that might be relevant by an automatic welding machine yet inappropriate in a sales office such as the location of a waste bin and a taped-out area where a pen (only one mind, not two and absolutely not three) doesn’t help the cause to Lean adoption. Small and stupid things can stand out, overshadowing the good parts.
Some of the claims made by the author in an almost matter-of-fact manner are stunningly alarming, such as: “a popular rule of thumb in the Lean community is that 95 per cent of Lean transformations fail from lack of senior management support.” Yet Lean is a lot more than being just a production-led efficiency scheme. It has the capability to challenge and change many common business practices such as standard cost accounting, top-down management, emphasis on batch sizes and economies of scale and an obsession with data, notes the author. Here’s the problem! This is at odds with conventional management thinking, something that is still being taught at possibly the majority of business schools worldwide, even in 2015.
This was a gripping, engaging, thoughtful and challenging book. The author notes that Lean is not an easy process even for those who believe in it and want it to succeed. For those who just want another “box to tick” you can imagine the end results are not as potentially lucrative.
Whatever your company’s size and whatever it does, reading this book might be one of your wiser decisions, even if you never will formally implement Lean. You may find that Lean can begin to take over your company by osmosis.
This is NOT a facile "12 Secrets of Lean Success" book. Mr Stoller has deeply researched the topic using interviews with top leaders from some of the most long-term, successful lean companies in North America. Out of these interviews come very clear and challenging themes, actions, and common threads.The companies chosen are pioneers of lean, and have shown outstanding success with hugely increased productivity, profitability, and both product and operational quality. Everyone of them focuses on the people and understands customer value.
Mr. Stoller does not pull any punches. He shows that our industries must diverge from traditional management to lean thinking if we are to keep up with global competition, fix healthcare, attract well-trained and enthusiastic people, and create sustainable, healthy, long-term businesses.
I highly recommend The Lean CEO , Brian Maskell