My Favorite Mistake — 230: Shingo Institute Executive Director Ken Snyder: Navigating the Nuances of Lean Leadership and Sustainable Change

Episode page with video, transcript, and more

My guest for Episode #230 of the My Favorite Mistake podcast is Ken Snyder, Executive Director of the Shingo Institute and Senior Lecturer at Utah State University. 

Ken has been the executive director of the Shingo Institute since 2015. He developed an interest in Japanese business practices while living in Japan during the time he was a student. His interest led him to major in Japanese history from the University of Utah and then to pursue an MBA from Harvard Graduate School of Business for the purpose of working with a Japanese business expanding to the United States.

He joined the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business in 2008.

Before joining the Huntsman School, Ken was president of Marketing Communication Inc., an operating division of Taylor Corporation, where he directed a group of six companies while growing revenues from $25 million to over $80 million.

In this episode, Ken shares his favorite mistake story about his time at Taylor Corporation, when he thought he had made an improvement in their process for collecting data from 6,000 dealers — but everybody went back to the old way. Why did the change fail to stick? What did Ken learn from this? How does this influence his teaching today? We discuss that and more!

  • Questions and Topics:
  • General question: When is it a matter of backsliding or the change was never adopted?
  • Tell us about the Shingo Institute and its namesake Shigeo Shingo…
  • Lean Blog Interviews podcast with Ritsuo Shingo
  • Is it hard for companies to sustain performance after being awarded the Shingo Prize?
  • Not just tools, but Principles
  • The Shingo Model
  • Learning and improving — not just you but the Institute

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