People Side of True Lean

Course Dates:
Lexington, KY

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The Cultural DNA Piece of True Lean

The People Side of Lean is the cultural DNA piece of sustainable lean transformation.  Organizations first implement the tools, improve efficiencies and eliminate waste, but then reach a plateau until they are able to gain full team member buy-in.  This is a natural struggle point and a normal phase of the lean journey.

The University of Kentucky Lean Systems Program offers many activities to support and partner with executives and lean transformation leaders as they successfully navigate through this phase of their journey – to succeed with the People Side of Lean!  These offerings are based upon our team’s Toyota experience as well as their experience partnering with other organizations to address the most common struggle-points with the People Side of Lean:

1. Understanding the True Lean Principles, People-Strategies and Leadership “Thinking Ways” and Behaviors needed to Achieve Mutual Trust and Mutual Understanding of Needs between Organization and Team Member (The 4 Principles)

2. Setting & Managing Uniform Expectations for Performance & Behaviors (One set of rules!)

3. Deploying Lean Throughout Employee Lifecycle (Recruiting, On-boarding, Performance Management, Development, Succession Planning)

4. Instituting Recognition and Rewards Programs to Reinforce True Lean Performance and Behaviors

5. Creating the “Building Blocks” to Measure and Confirm Value-added-Work – Asking What we do; Why we do it; How it adds value and links to Strategy and Goals

6. Realizing a Culture of Open Two-Way Communications (Infrastructure, Standards, Tools, Messages, Messengers)

Our Approach

We transfer knowledge and share experience and expertise gained through our years of working with organizations in manufacturing, healthcare, distribution, and food service to name a few.  We are not a consulting house.  Rather, we partner with organizations to assess and build internal capabilities allowing them to realize higher team member engagement.  We partner to build the necessary under-girding strength – the DNA needed to succeed in the people side of lean.

Note from webmaster: we are currently rebuilding these pages. If you are unable to find what you need please contact Sandra Dunn, 859-257-4886.

Our People Side Offerings

Offerings can be customized to meet organizations where they are on the lean journey.  They include but are not limited to:

Two-Day Session

One-Day Customized Executive Session

Customized SessionsFocused on Lean Elements

  • Uniform Expectations for Performance and Behaviors (One set of rules!)
  • Open Two-Way Communications (Infrastructure, Systems & Processes, Tools, Messages and Messengers)
  • “Building Blocks” Tool to Link/Align Activities to Strategy & Goals
  • Performance Management

Executive Coaching

Speaking Engagements


Our instructors will act as facilitators, coaches, and speakers as is appropriate for the type of event you have scheduled.

Pete Gritton

Pete Gritton

Pete is the former VP of Human Resources at Toyota Motor Engineering and Manufacturing, North America.  He was Toyota’s ninth hire in North America.  Pete retired in 2009 after twenty-two years of service. Since retirement, Pete has been partnering with global corporations and organizations on the People Side of Lean. He also coaches individual executives and works with executive teams on strategic planning – Hoshin Kanri.


Ownie McBrideOwnie McBride

Since 1998 Ownie has worked with Pete as a contractor strategic planning, executive coaching, strategic communications & change management, HR & employee relations. She also supports global organizations with Lean, including health care, manufacturing, and food service. Ownie previously was a management consultant through a labor & employment law firm, owned a Washington, DC, consulting business, served as Bush (41) Inaugural Communications Director and received a Reagan appointment to serve Transportation Secretary Elizabeth Dole.


For Information:

Want to know more?

We will be happy to provide more information about the People Side of True Lean and our offerings.

Ready to schedule?

We’ll be happy to help you choose and plan the course that’s right for you.

Please contact:

Sandra Dunn
Phone: 859-257-4886