All posts by George Friesen

About George Friesen

George Friesen serves as Business Practice Leader - Lean Manufacturing for the Workforce Solutions Group of St. Louis Community College. He has led the College's Lean business practice area since 2000. Prior to joining the College, George worked for Maritz Performance Improvement Company. Over the past 35 years, he has served a wide variety of Fortune 500 companies, specializing during the past eleven years in Lean Manufacturing, focusing especially on the 5S System, Lean leadership and thinking processes, Value Stream Mapping, and Lean team building. George is a graduate of Washington University (AB), Webster University (MA), and United States Air Force Flight Training.
  • Success Can Be Dangerous
    Success Can Be Dangerous

    When things are going smoothly and a lot of money is being made, we start to believe that today will last forever. It won’t. Further, when things are going smoothly and a lot of money is being...

    • Posted June 7, 2017
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  • The High Cost of Low Trust
    The High Cost of Low Trust

    Low trust has a very high cost. It drives down employee engagement. It damages productivity. It limits profitability. The bedrock of employer lack of trust is fear. Fear drives mistrust and showing mistrust makes employees untrustworthy. Want...

    • Posted May 24, 2017
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  • The Power of Corporate Myths
    The Power of Corporate Myths

    They literally define the character of the organization. Some of these stories exert a very positive influence over employees. Other stories exert a very negative influence over employees. They demotivate employees. They destroy a commitment to quality....

    • Posted April 20, 2017
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  • Awesome! Well, Not Really
    Awesome! Well, Not Really

    Weak processes. Disengaged employees. A perfect formula for failure. These two are the most common, and most destructive, forces that are at work in all too many work environments.

    • Posted March 28, 2017
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  • The Instant Pudding Myth
    The Instant Pudding Myth

    W. Edwards Deming was once asked to share the secret for creating a highly productive organization. The person making the request told Deming that he would pay whatever the price might be for this secret. And here’s...

    • Posted February 22, 2017
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  • Pete Lived Quality and Pete Loved His Work
    Pete Lived Quality and Pete Loved His Work

    What drives employees to do consistently high quality work and to be happy while they're at work? What it takes is a leadership team, the members of which consistently demonstrate that they respect their employees and need...

    • Posted February 7, 2017
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  • Is it “Our Company” or “Their Company”?
    Is it “Our Company” or “Their Company”?

    One of the first things I listen for when working with a new client is how their employees refer to the company for which they work. If they refer to it as “our company,” that tells me...

    • Posted January 24, 2017
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  • Do You Value Your Employees?
    Do You Value Your Employees?

    Should all companies value the knowledge and creativity of their line workers? Absolutely. Do employees need to know this? Absolutely. And when this happens, what will the outcome be? Work processes will continuously improve, driving significant gains...

    • Posted January 11, 2017
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  • The Truth is a Fearful Thing
    The Truth is a Fearful Thing

    Separate the problem from the person. Easy to say. Hard to do. But absolutely necessary if the kind of robust communication upon which good leadership depends is going to happen. And it has to start at the...

    • Posted December 13, 2016
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  • Comments that Kill Productivity
    Two Comments that Kill Productivity

    I’m sure all of us have heard variations of these two comments in conference rooms and on the floors of factories. I suspect many of us flinched when we heard them. And, if you’re like me through...

    • Posted November 9, 2016
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