News & Downloads

A Time To Celebrate
A Time to Celebrate   In May 2022 the SHINGO Institute recognized our team with a coveted SHINGO Publication Award for our book - TPM: A foundation of Operational Excellence.    The team behind the book, the authors Peter Willmott, Andy Brunskill, and John Quirke along with Alex Everitt our graphic designer,  were able to finally meet [...]
icon icon icon
Jeff Williams supports Fareshare on their journey to Enterprise Excellence
As part of our Care Programme, we provide both financial and in-kind support to charities around the world.  Jeff Williams, our Director of Business Development was delighted to spend a day with the team at one of our much-loved charities Fareshare to support them with business improvement and their journey to Enterprise Excellence.      [...]
icon icon icon
Celebrating Ideal Behaviours
Every July we recognize some of our amazing team for their contribution to the business.  This annual award is given each July and builds on our monthly reward and recognition program. Both of the programs are designed to recognize those individuals that go above and beyond in demonstrating our core values and the behaviours we [...]
icon icon icon
Why Do An Assessment?
Enterprise Excellence is the goal for most, however so few organsitions achieve it, and even fewer sustain it. Having worked with many organsiations over the years on this journey I know it is rarely a simple journey, or one that can be copied from others. It’s not something a leader can impose, or build on [...]
icon icon icon
Embracing Sustainability
The drive for sustainability is a guiding principle of many organisations, not simply because it makes sound financial sense. Embracing sustainability is not only about manufacturing/producing, or supplying in a sustainable manner but also about the long-term future of the organisation which will be achieved through taking a holistic view of the operation from a [...]
icon icon icon
Systems – The Architecture of Deep Excellence and Sustainability
“In spite of the fact that management is responsible for the system, or for lack of the system, I find in my experience that few people in industry know what constitutes a system.” W Edward Deming   If you want to learn something new read an old book, said a wise man once. It is [...]
icon icon icon
Team Celebrates Shingo Publication Award for TPM: A foundation of Operational Excellence
On May 19 in Orlando, Florida, John Quirke, Life Science Practice Leader at global consulting company, S A Partners, received the SHINGO Publication Award on behalf of the team for the book TPM (Total Productive Manufacturing): A Foundation of Operational Excellence.  John, along with business colleagues Andy Brunskill and Peter Willmott, are authors of the [...]
icon icon icon
Onsite Insights Returns in 2022!
Relaunch of the Best Practice Visit Programme in the UK We are delighted to announce the relaunch of Onsite Insights – the UK’s national best practice visit programme. The programme has been put on hold during the last two years but we are delighted that our host sites have once again agreed to welcome visitors [...]
icon icon icon
S A Partners launch Carbon Neutral Programme
We are pleased to announce that S A Partners has begun its journey to Carbon Neutrality by supporting the Ocean Foundation, a blue carbon initiative focusing on the support and rebuilding of ocean habitats through the replantation of Seagrass, mangroves, and blue carbon education. The Carbon Neutral Programme aims to completely offset the business's carbon [...]
icon icon icon
Coaching Triads
We have been running coaching triads in our business for over ten years to support learning and development.  More recently we have introduced Coaching Triads as part of our onboarding process. They have delivered unforeseen benefits, colleagues are collaborating across continents in ways we never thought possible. The Triads are yielding some great insights into [...]
icon icon icon
Food Sector: Is it too busy too improve?
As someone who has worked with many, many Food companies around the world on their Continuous Improvement and Business Transformation journeys, there is not a lot that surprises me or unnerves me. As the old saying goes “I probably have seen it all”. I have worked across Branded Name and Own Label Food Manufacturers across [...]
icon icon icon
Embracing Digital

In our recent webinar on the Future of Lean we explored the need for organisations to embrace digital solutions to enable them to deploy continuous improvement more efficiently. You can watch the webinar here.  It is clear that embracing technology will enable organisations to reduce costs, improve productivity and be more flexible. Our work with blue-chip organisations on developing improvement strategies and roadmaps incorporates the adoption of the right technologies to suit the demands of our […]

icon icon icon
Insights from Seani Devlin, Abbvie

In this month’s SHINGO Forum we welcomed Seani Devlin, the brilliant and engaging Operational Excellence Lead at Abbvie, Ballytivnan. Seani shared with the group both the site and his personal insights on their Shingo journey. We invited Seani along to the Shingo Forum to talk about his employee engagement; tiered meetings and visual management. Having […]

icon icon icon
TPM, the Foundation for Operational Excellence

The highly successful book for Total Productive Maintenance written by Peter Willmott, John Quirke and Andy Brunskill is now available to purchase at Waterstones. Titled Total Productive Maintenance, a foundation of Operational Excellence. The book provides the following 5 essential outputs: Provide a practical guide of how to deliver sustainable benefits using the TPM enabling system Show […]

icon icon icon
Shingo Guiding Principle: Lead with Humility

For me, this is one of the most critical principles within the Shingo Model for leaders to grasp at a core, personal level. The power contained within this principle is, I believe, the source of real cultural change within organizations. Leaders, particularly in the technical and compliance-based environments where I spend a lot of my time, often […]

icon icon icon
Virtual Training – Who Knew?

I’ve been asked to share my experience of lockdown and some “top tips” on virtual training.  Three months ago I knew nothing about Zoom, and hadn’t really bothered getting to grips with Microsoft Teams.  But then everything changed……! I wouldn’t call myself a complete technophobe, but let’s just say I’m often late to the party […]

icon icon icon
Improving the Image and Perception of Maintenance

Improving the Image and Perception of Maintenance by clearly stating what Maintenance ‘Best Practice’ can bring to the Operational Excellence agenda

icon icon icon
Useful resources on Covid-19
Here are a list of useful resources that should help you cope with the crisis a lot better. We have split these into two parts, information and Inspiration. Information: Gaining better understanding about COVID19 These are resources that give you a better understanding of what’s actually going on, from health to financial markets and economic [...]
icon icon icon
Developing Leadership Skills

What makes an Organisation Great is its ability to manage and motivate its people and leaders, which is where Developing Leadership Skills come into play. There are millions of quotes, thousands of books and hundreds of professors all available to give advice to organisations, or teach us specific techniques. The problem with all this, is […]

icon icon icon
Agile Development
What is Agile? Agile is a development methodology that has it’s roots in earlier efforts to improve software development, “most notably Extreme Programming (XP), Feature Driven Development, DSDM, PRINCE and even Lean Software Development.” (1 Artisan Software Consulting, LLC) In 2001, the Agile Manifesto was born. The manifesto reads: Individuals and interactions over processes and [...]
icon icon icon
Effective Leadership

Its Effective leadership that makes an organisation Great. It’s the ability to manage and motivate its people at every level of the business. There are millions of quotes, thousands of books and hundreds of professors, all available to give us advice or teach us a specific technique.  This approach ends up almost like a cockeril […]

icon icon icon
Leadership Questionnaire
Leadership is a key ingredient to successfully driving change within any organisation, and the following leadership questionnaire helps define what type of Leader you are. We've devised a simple 10 point Leadership Questionnaire which aims at highlighting the most common occurrences that may happen during interaction with teams  or individuals. At S A Partners, we've [...]
icon icon icon
Creating Sustainable Leadership with Inspiration from Fun boy three, Bananarama and the Blues Brothers
Raise your hand if you’ve ever tried creating sustainable leadership in your organisation. It’s an objective S A Partners implement in different types of organisations and sectors all the time, and one that organisations always have issues with in implementing successfully, and that's where S A Partners come in via our Leadership Development Programme. I [...]
icon icon icon
Coaching with the Shingo Approach

Over the years, Lean has evolved from primarily a tools-based approach to a focus on an end to end systems view and developing people at all levels of an organization. If done correctly, managers enable people on the front lines to be confident enough to change and improve their processes. Focusing on the middle management […]

icon icon icon
Continuous Improvement in Public Sector Organisations
Is there method in our madness, or rather madness in our methods? I had been a civil servant since I was 19, and during that time had personally experienced the joys and sorrows of life as a CI practitioner in various capacities in the Ministry of Justice. I remember the initial buzz as we embarked [...]
icon icon icon
The Productivity Puzzle
The UK is falling behind in global productivity Since 2017, the UK’s productivity has been falling behind the other G7 countries by a gap of around 16%, but here at S A Partners we’re focusing on helping you engage your teams in solving the productivity puzzle. The BBC has also recently been publishing items highlighting [...]
icon icon icon
Planes, Trains and Automobiles – Japan Lean Experience
This month I am putting together the final touches in preparation for my trip to Japan in April 2018, attending the “Japan Lean Experience” with my colleagues from Tokyo . This will be my fourth week long homage to the spiritual home of Kaizen and Lean thinking, and I will be traveling with a small [...]
icon icon icon
Japan Lean Experience – Tokai-Shin-ei Electronics
Back in 2009 I  kept a diary of my Japan Lean Experience and I recall that on our 4th day on the road, and after another great lunch at the Gozarase restaurant we travelled for about an hour to Ena-shi Gifuken, the home of Tokai-Shin-ei Electronics. Tokai-Shin-ei design and manufacture printed circuit boards their factory [...]
icon icon icon
Dr Kano Would be Delighted to Travel Delta Airlines

I have recently returned from three weeks of sun and scenery in the USA, as part of my travels I took a couple of internal flights, on Delta Airlines to transport me in and out of Salt Lake City,  my starting point, then travelling up through Idaho into Yellowstone National Park. So for those in […]

icon icon icon
Glastonbury Festival, a Lean Operations Management Challenge

If you have just been to, or watched the Glastonbury Festival – this is a real feat of ‘Lean operations management’ that we may not usually consider. For example: Last year there was 3 Days of production planning and operations. This year there is 4 as Thursday hosts the ‘surprise act’. 10 stages – or […]

icon icon icon
Building the Self-Efficacy of Individuals to Deliver Business Improvement and Success
I recently recorded a podcast on the importance of learning, stating that ‘it’s not about the badge’, but the journey of learning and reflection that results in accreditation and certification. Another way of looking at this is the development of self-efficacy within the individuals who are on our development programmes. At S A Partners we [...]
icon icon icon
It’s Not About the Badge

For us and our clients who participate on our Lean Competency System (LCS) accredited ‘learning by doing’ programmes – the value comes from the depth of benefits gained from the learning experience, and sustainable capability that is developed within the teams and individuals on the programme. It’s not about the LCS Certification and Badge – […]

icon icon icon
How to make Continuous Improvement/Lean stick?
We have been working with a client for over a year now, the flipchart below is their feedback on how to make “Lean/Continuous Improvement” stick- a fabulous piece of thinking I am very proud of the team. It illustrated to me how far they have come in relation to understanding how continuous improvement is implemented [...]
icon icon icon
News from the AME Conference – Melbourne
In early March I took my first ever trip to the AME Conference in Melbourne, and had a chance to enjoy not running the show, but just to rub shoulders with some great people and leaders in all things excellent. This was also a chance to meet up with some of the SA Partners team [...]
icon icon icon
6 Nations – the Williams-Moriarty ‘Changeover’ Model?

It’s that time of year again and I really love the 6 Nations competition. However, my other passion is Lean Thinking and I often blend the 2 subjects – albeit involuntarily! Whilst watching the epic battle – Wales V England – my thoughts were invaded by the ‘Total Productive Maintenance’ of the players – all […]

icon icon icon
Frankenstein wins Tour de France!

Consider the enterprise excellence model to be a body – as a model it creates exceptional customer value, as a body it creates healthy happy life. The body is made up of systems that enable life to happen. Digestion, movement, growth, thought, breathing etc. All these bodily systems have to happen in an intergrated way […]

icon icon icon
Predictions for 2017

My predictions for 2017 Given the curveballs that 2016 threw at us, I can’t help feeling a bit foolish in trying to predict what will happen in Sustainability in 2017. Brexit, Donald Trump’s election and a number of forthcoming elections across Europe have created unparalleled uncertainty for the 12 months ahead. Having said that, the […]

icon icon icon
The Lean Olympics

At the velodrome – applying Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints (TOC) to the Team Pursuit. The Theory of Constraints (TOC) is a suite of management concepts developed by Dr. Eliyahu Goldratt – introduced in his book ‘The Goal’ in 1984. In the book, the Plant Manager and Operations Management Team had to decide on what and […]

icon icon icon
The Impact and Importance of the UK Automotive Sector

According to the Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders, the UK produces around 1.5 million cars and commercial vehicles and 3 million engines, accounting for 9-11% of the UK’s total exports. The sector generates more than £55 billion in annual turnover, employs around 700,000 people and delivers around £12 billion in net value-added to the […]

icon icon icon
Dare to Dream, learn from failure – A lesson from the Welsh Football Team

Anyone watching the exciting Quarter Final match in the European Cup tournament between Wales and Belgium on Friday will have witnessed a performance by a team who want to play together and play for each other. They have both ‘will’ and ‘skill’ – a clear aim, team structure, roles and a plan of attack for […]

icon icon icon
The Wales Football Team, Euros 2016 and Lean Thinking

I am not really a football fan. Don’t ask me about the off-side rule …….! But Wales have qualified for the Euros – 58 years since their last international tournament, so being Welsh – I am supporting the team. #TogetherStronger So – the TV was on in the background before the Wales vs Slovakia match. […]

icon icon icon
10 days in May

Variety is the spice of life – even for a lean devotee like myself. One of the things I value about my role at S A Partners is that every day is different! Different clients, different locations, different cultures, different challenges, different improvement projects – but there are similarities…………. 10 days in May proves this. […]

icon icon icon
Looking at the 8 Wastes in Rugby

To follow on from the end of the 6 Nations rugby competition, congratulations to England by the way, I have used the 8 wastes we all know so well, and applied to the good game of rugby.

icon icon icon
Listen Up

We wanted to get some real data about listening. We also wanted to get beyond old statements about ‘active-listening’, and we wanted to know what impact listening had on how people felt?

icon icon icon
Operations Management and the 6 Nations

Whilst it is highly, emotionally charged – particularly being Welsh – as a Lean advocate, I am also interested in the process of the game and how it is played! (I really do need to get out more!)

icon icon icon
Lean Scorecard Maturity Assessment

How the Lean Scorecard Maturity Assessment can help. A new year, new challenges? Do you know where you need to improve to stay ahead of the competition?

icon icon icon
The Power of the Pen in a Digital Age

We face a predicament; my question is how do I stop the negative attitude among the workforce taking root without defying HQ?

icon icon icon
Life on the Road

The glamour of being a consultant travelling the world is not all what it seems to be you know, and here’s why travelling can be stressful. This week I set off for a journey to Mexico:

icon icon icon
Hunter Lovins Writes about Reinventing our Economy:
A corporate commitment to behaving more sustainably is ever more important. As news from the scientists gets grimmer – September was the hottest month ever on record; New Scientist’s recent report showed that the world is warming faster than previously believed, and the new IPCC report will say much the same – people need somewhere to [...]
icon icon icon
The negative impacts of ignoring the Shingo Principles

Successful organisations are often guided by the Shingo principles, Conversely, organisations who ignore these principles fail to deliver success ……for example

icon icon icon