Lean Enterprise Institute Names Joshua Howell President and Executive Team Leader

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Josh Howell is an experienced manager and lean management coach who is adept at designing and implementing enterprise level lean operating systems or facilitating work improvement at the employee level.

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Josh Howell, LEI's new president and executive team leader

I will give my best effort to extend the institute’s legacy of thought leadership, caretaking for the past while elevating thought leaders for the future.

The nonprofit Lean Enterprise Institute (LEI), a global leader in lean thinking and practice, today announced the appointment of LEI Senior Coach Josh Howell as president and executive team leader. He reports to Jean Cunningham, LEI executive chair.

“I am humbled by the LEI board’s appointment,” Howell said. “LEI has been led by pioneering lean management thought leaders like Jim Womack, John Shook, and Jean Cunningham.“

In an online statement, Howell said the appointment was “humbling, and frankly, intimidating. That said, I will give my best effort to extend the institute’s legacy of thought leadership while creating means by which new thought leaders can emerge.”

He promised new collaborations on products and services such as the recently developed:

  • Managing to Learn-Remotely, an online workshop;
  • Designing The Future Summit on lean product development;
  • Getting Home, a new book on applying lean principles to disaster recovery.

Lean System Architect
For the past six years, Howell was senior coach of the Institute’s unique Co-Learning Partners, a small group of select companies with a passion for collaborative learning and a willingness to share results with the global lean community.

Howell designed and implemented hands-on learning experiences for partner companies to develop people’s capabilities in work improvement and A3-based problem solving. Through direct involvement in lean transformations, he does research into the implementation of lean business systems, most notably in retail, restaurant, and construction environments. He is a frequent contributor to LEI’s blog, the Lean Post.

Previously, he was an architect and implementer of a lean operating system for retail stores at Starbucks Coffee Company. To spread the system companywide, he created a global team of coaches to develop frontline managers as problem solvers.

Howell holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame.

About LEI
Lean Enterprise Institute, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit training, publishing, and research organization based in Boston, MA, with a mission to make things better through lean thinking and practice by creating more value and prosperity while consuming the fewest possible resources. Founded in 1997 by management expert James P. Womack, PhD, LEI conducts research, teaches educational workshops, publishes books and ebooks, runs conferences, and shares practical information about lean thinking and practice. Visit LEI at lean.org to learn more and subscribe.

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Chet Marchwinski
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