Sempai 2015 Lean Awards...& More Honesty Please (#8)

Inspired by the BBC's “Sports Personality of the Year”awards last night I’ve been thinking back on the year and all things lean. The result of which is the glittering list below of Sempai Awards for services to lean in 2015.

Before we get into that, you may wonder about the photo of AP McCoy heading this blogpost. McCoy won a lifetime achievement award last night and whether you agree with horse racing or not, it’s hard to begrudge an award for a man quite as committed to breaking his own body for his profession. Now onto the (semi) serious stuff…

Best Lean Website goes to Planet-Lean where they peddle an excellent mix of varied content, fantastically short on academic dryness, but long on gemba examples.

Incidentally, the good people at Planet Lean also gave me the two Best Articles I Read This Year. The first "A Fast track to Cancer Treatment"around lean in breast cancer care by Evelin Marotta, Sheila Vianna Rais & Stela Maris Coelho who collectively pick up my vote in the category of Lean with Real Purpose.

The other great article was from Rob van Gorkom who secures himself Most Honest Reflection by a Clearly Skilled Practitioner in penning a beautifully balanced article on his work with lean in Siberian supermarkets "All by yourself? Find yourself a Lean Trojan Horse". Rob did a great job of laying bare and reflecting upon his early failure to generate later success.

Best Problem Solving in a Movie goes to Matt Damon for surviving on Mars via innovative fertilisation techniques. That takes some beating, so it has to be “The Martian” which brought to mind the Tom Hanks Apollo 13 film for its problem solving tuition.

Jon Miller of Gemba Panta Rei gifted the Most Unexpected Lean Treat of the Year.  He actually posted it in 2011 but somehow I missed this 4 years ago. I got real pleasure from Jon unearthing audio of Ohno-san speaking, like touching a little piece of our history.

Columnist Delivering Consistently Excellent Value Added Content heads the way of Michael Balle in his Gemba Coach column (and other articles). In his writing Michael is very generous with his knowledge and appears to have an impressive humility, in common with Pascal Dennis. Wherever your lean capabilities currently lie, these two fellas will further it.

For my part I learned more than I forgot this year, practiced a lot more, had successes and made manageably small mistakes. In working with some new clients I rediscovered something I had temporary mislaid and helped them to make some fine progress.

My lean wish for the New Year is for more lean thought leaders to speak openly of their failures instead of maintaining the façade that every intervention via their particular consulting outfit is an unqualified success. We all know that life’s not like that.

Finally, this made me laugh, for a long time; Customer feedback with a typically British slant.


Merry Christmas


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