Expert Speed Chat 
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Exploring the value of emerging technology in the lean enterprise

Manufacturing's need to leverage technology in its lean future state


Speed Chat with Experts
Tuesday, Oct. 10 Location Code
9:45am-12:00pm Hynes Center, Level 3, Room 312 TS/07

In this two-hour interactive session, three esteemed industry experts from Lean IT Strategies, Ingersoll Rand and Microsoft, will share their views, challenge our thinking, and facilitate a series of active roundtable discussion on a variety of topics that we can all share with and learn together.


Nearly every day, we witness a new and surprising example of the rapid advance of technology. In the Spring 2017 Target Magazine, AME chairman Greg Williams encourages us to consider the ‘fourth industrial revolution' and the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. In the same issue, The MPI Group shares survey results that suggest plant leaders must focus on better leveraging the use of technology in the workplace, while fostering innovations to increase organization’s market share. Technology can help us in many ways and this naturally leads us to ask ourselves: what we could be doing right now, and what should we be doing in the not-so-distant future?

A great deal of hype surrounds emerging technology, but there is also potential strategic value to be gained in areas including mobility, big (and small) data analytics, virtual/augmented reality, 3D/additive manufacturing, the Internet of Things, predictive maintenance, simulations, algorithms, learning machines and more. Experience has proven that lean startup, lean product development, agile and scrum practices can join with lean operational excellence capabilities to engage our employees and customers, enable rapid innovation, accelerate speed to market, and produce greater value for customers and the enterprise.  But ultimately, it’s up to each enterprise to make informed choices on which value hypotheses to explore, and how to experiment with least cost and risk, based on its unique strategic strengths and opportunities.

Presenters: Steve Bell / Dan McDonnell / Michael Walton

Steve Bell is co-founder of Lean IT Strategies. He is a pioneer and thought leader in the convergence of lean principles and technology to help enterprises simultaneously achieve operational excellence and rapid innovation in an increasingly digitized world. He is a Shingo Prize-winning author of three books: "Run Grow Transform," "Lean IT" and "Lean Enterprise Systems," and is a member of the Lean Enterprise Institute faculty. Bell and Karen Whitley Bell (co-founder of Lean IT Strategies) recently launched the Digital Lean Enterprise blog. 

Dan McDonnell has been with Ingersoll Rand for seven years serving as the vice president of operational excellence, vice president of operations for Trane residential HVAC, and most recently as vice president of operations for compressor technologies and services. McDonnell began his career at Multilin, where he rose from shop supervisor to vice president of operations. He spent 14 years with GE where he served as a plant manager and multi-site leader for 11 different factories, finishing as lean manager for GE Transportation. 

Michael Walton Michael Walton is the manufacturing industry solution executive from Microsoft where he collaborates with Fortune 500 manufacturers to introduce game-changing strategies and technologies into their manufacturing operations. He is passionate about helping manufacturers capture and leverage their data, cloud, and machine learning algorithms to revolutionize every aspect of their processes, production and products, including predictive maintenance, connected field services, remote monitoring and more. Walton joined Microsoft after working with industry-leading companies such as Atos, PACCAR, Caterpillar, Google, Procter & Gamble, Lexmark, Cameron, Varian Medical and many others where he established a strong reputation for building innovative manufacturing strategies and solutions. Walton earned a BA degree in computer science and AA in mathematics from Thomas More College, and is a graduate of the Army Command and General Staff College. He is a member of the U.S. Army Reserves and a Lieutenant Colonel in the Army Reserves with over 30 years of service.