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.
  • Nothing Beats Simplicity
    Nothing Beats Simplicity

    Start simple. Stay focused on taking the struggle out of everyone’s work. Let the power of Lean be experienced in simple ways. Nothing beats the power of simplicity.

    • Posted June 28, 2018
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  • Henry Ford: America’s First Lean Champion
    Henry Ford: America’s First Lean Champion

    "The ordinary way of doing business is not the best way." This statement gets right at the heart of the kind of thinking that drove the success of Ford Motor Company in the early part of the...

    • Posted June 19, 2018
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  • Quit Complaining!
    Quit Complaining!

    “We’re getting too many complaints in our suggestion box, I’m taking it down.” When managers personalize "complaints," or don't spend time on the floor listening to line workers on their ideas to improve work processes, it's a...

    • Posted June 6, 2018
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  • Knee-Jerk Management
    Knee-Jerk Management

    Knee-Jerk Management may feel good in the heat of battle but the anger or frustration or pain that triggers its use returns all too quickly and is more intense the second time around. There is only one...

    • Posted May 23, 2018
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  • The False Allure of Punishment
    The False Allure of Punishment

    The “punish ‘em when they’re not doing the right thing” mentality exists in far too many organizations despite the fact that it is a demonstrably ineffective way of driving improved performance. Given the ineffectiveness of the “punish...

    • Posted April 19, 2018
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  • Anger, Respect, and Productivity
    Anger, Respect, and Productivity

    Showing respect for workers makes all the difference in worker attitudes and product quality. And why is showing respect for workers of such supreme importance? Because not showing respect triggers anger (that great enemy of productivity and...

    • Posted April 5, 2018
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  • Yogi Berra: Lean Management Guru
    Yogi Berra: Lean Management Guru

    Yogi knew that if he wanted to improve his hitting he had to move far beyond blaming himself. He had to carefully analyze, with the help of coaches, all aspects of his work process, hitting a baseball....

    • Posted March 20, 2018
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  • Being Blinded by Machine Utilization Rate
    Being Blinded by Machine Utilization Rate

    We build more than our customer needs just to not waste production capacity. It’s magical thinking and it’s intoxicating. And thinking this way has a direct, negative impact on profitability. So what are some steps that can...

    • Posted February 21, 2018
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  • Nick Foles by Sgt. Kyle Richardson (DVIDS) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.
    Nick Foles, Second-Stringer, Delivers for the Eagles

    So what’s to be learned from this workplace called the Super Bowl? What’s to be learned about driving championship performance in any workplace, be it a factory, a corporate office, a warehouse, or a hospital? There are...

    • Posted February 8, 2018
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  • Incredible Power of the Uncommon and Unexpected
    The Incredible Power of the Uncommon and Unexpected

    Lackluster employee engagement seems all too common these days. Especially when it's so easy to create employee experiences that drive higher levels of motivation, confidence, and, most importantly, a sense of belonging to the organization. Unexpected. Personal....

    • Posted January 10, 2018
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