Engaging Executives with KanDo Lean

With 85% of CEO’s predicting tough economic conditions in the year ahead, businesses need to be efficient to survive.
In the manufacturing industry this means rigorously adopting a lean approach. This approach improves both the financial health of the business and drives customer satisfaction; though reduced waste and improving productivity.
Working with senior executives Steve Burrell, Managing Director of Unleash Enterprises, used experiential learning to strengthen the lean approach at a global manufacturer using MTa’s KanDo Lean. We sat down with him to discover more.

Steve, how did you use MTa’s KanDo Lean with the executive team of a global manufacturer?

Sure, we were brought in to run a short activity with the executives as part of a management understanding problem-solving workshop.
Our goal was to reconnect the top 50 executives of this manufacturer to the importance of lean within 45mins. Supporting that we were also asked to develop problem solving, communication and collaboration skills.
It was a big ask for such a short space of time but KanDo Lean was perfect. We had to adapt it to fit within the time but it allowed us to achieve the learning objectives and much more. You could speak to 10 different people and they would tell you that they learnt 10 different things.

Interesting, can you tell me more about what the executives learnt?

Of course. The main learning objective was to reconnect the executives to the importance of lean. This was a process of fully understanding the supply chain so that better business decisions could be made. The immersive experience of KanDo Lean gave participants that understanding. Supporting that, the periods of reflection allowed team members to learn from previous mistakes and improve.
Individuals spoke about how they had improved their; planning, communication, clarity, customer service, problem solving and customer service skills. This improvement led to the overall success of the team. It was also a stark reminder of the importance of getting it right first time in manufacturing.
Getting it right first time was highlighted when things went wrong. The participants were accountable and had to take ownership of mistakes. When they came to run the activity again those mistakes were improved upon and the team performed at a higher level.

“I’ve been training clients for 12 years. This is the first tool I’ve found which is seamless.”

Sounds stressful, what feedback did you receive from the executives?

Love it. Want to do it again.
They were all actively engaged and enjoyed the competition.
I also heard the phrase ‘I didn’t realise’ several times during the reflection periods which demonstrated the impact of the activity.

What do you like about MTa KanDo Lean so much?

The challenge is a stretch for anyone without being so hard that it makes people feel uncomfortable. It’s in the participants hands to solve the problem, they just need to think!
I also like that there is a clear process behind the activity; I can discreetly nudge groups, if they need it.

Would you recommend MTa Kando Lean?

I’ve been training clients for 12 years. This is the first tool I’ve found which is seamless. The engaging activity and practical learning flow and can easily be related to theory.
With other experiential learning I find that, whilst the activity is engaging, you need to force the learning points. They are focused on a fun experience with tenuous links to learning objectives. MTa is about meaningful activities. Ultimately MTa makes my life easier and the guides are so comprehensive anyone can run them.

What would you say to another facilitator who was thinking of buying the kit?

Go and buy it. If you are training anybody in any environment, I am confident you can develop key skills with this one kit. At less than £695 it is a bargain!

One final question, you’ve been improving processes around the UK for 12 years, how has your business changed?

I find that participants want to engage more and be interactive. When I first started, we were delivering PowerPoints interspersed with questions. As time went on it became clear that participants wanted to actively take control of their own learning. We adapted to the market and made presentations shorter and focused on delivering activities.

“MTa is the future for my business as it puts learners firmly in control of their own development.”

Glad to hear that Steve! If you want to develop Lean Processes you can find out more about KanDo Lean here or speak to us about your needs with a free consultation.
*Note: Photos are from other MTa led sessions which use KanDo Lean