Upcoming Events

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Sept. 13: Professional Development Meeting
The Blackwell | 10:30am - 2:30pm

Featured keynote: 'Designing the Future' | 10:30am - noon
Jim Morgan, senior advisor, Lean Enterprise Institute; co-author, Designing the Future

It’s easy to find ourselves with our heads down, working to improve how we deliver products and services to our customers. What opportunities are we missing upstream?

jim morgan bookCOE’s fall kickoff event features a keynote from Jim Morgan, co-author of a new book, Designing the Future, that argues we should be focusing more of our time and resources on applying operational excellence principles to product and process development. Creating reliable, disciplined processes around a steady stream of products and services, in fact, can make a lasting impact on cost and quality.

In Morgan’s keynote, he’ll look inside the “black box” of development and draw from a variety of case examples to highlight a framework of concrete practices that can break down functional silos and foster a collaborative system of simultaneous processes. Using the principles of lean product and process development that Morgan outlines, organizations can create and sustain a “living development system” that’s centered on the customer and geared to pursue product perfection.

Afternoon session: 'Venturing Into Lean Product/Process Development' | 1-2:30pm
Matt Long, VP of continuous improvement
John Miller, engineering manager
Herman Miller Inc.

herman millerMaker of the iconic Eames Lounge Chair, Herman Miller Inc. is a more than $2 billion-a-year office furniture and home furnishings manufacturer based in Zeeland, Mich. Revered for its culture and design excellence, the company also is a benchmark in lean manufacturing best practices – but leaders discovered in recent years that a lack of focus on lean product-process development was delaying product launches and jeopardizing sales.

In this afternoon session, drawn directly from a case example in Miller’s book, two leaders from Herman Miller – Matt Long, VP of continuous improvement, and John Miller, engineering manager – share how the company embraced a new system of cross-functional collaboration that entailed reframing how the company used development milestones. The result of the company’s transformational effort boosted trust across departments and brought its on-time program delivery rate beyond 90%.

in-person or livestream 


Oct. 18: Supply Chain Symposium: Sustainable Supply Chain Management
Pfahl Hall | 9am to noon

COE’s annual collaboration with Fisher College of Business' Operations and Logistics Management Association graduate student group focuses on how companies are working to maximize the "triple bottom line" of people, planet, and profit.

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Each speaker in this half-day event will focus on a how sustainability practices intersect with a different component of the supply chain. Featured speakers include:

  • Sourcing: Katie Fornadel, Global Supply Planner, Patagonia
  • Operations: Josh Zabek, General Manager - Columbus Brewery, Anheuser-Busch InBev
  • Logistics: Emily Davis, Sustainability Program Manager, DHL
  • Life-Cycle: Kevin Kish, Vice President of Manufacturing, Advanced Drainage Systems

Registration opens early September

Save the date ...

  • Dec. 6 - Professional Development Meeting
  • Feb. 21, 2020 - Professional Development Meeting
  • April 7-9, 2020 - COE Summit 2020