Empowering Employees, Improving Daily

The Weekly Report – January 9. 2023
Ally Johnston’s next manufacturing workshop will show business leaders how combining continuous improvement with employee empowerment creates an outstanding retention strategy.

A new year often brings old challenges, and we know from our latest State of Manufacturing® survey that a large number of Minnesota manufacturers continue to cite attracting and retaining quality employees as one of their top concerns. If you are one of those business leaders, please join us for the upcoming workshop, “Creating a Culture of Continuous Improvement.”

One of our top consultants, Ally Johnston, has developed continuous improvement initiatives that empower employees to improve operations on a daily basis. While strengthening processes, Ally’s approach also boosts employee engagement, enthusiasm, and loyalty. She will share these strategies  at our workshop from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on January 26 at Hennepin Technical College, 9000 Brooklyn Blvd. in Brooklyn Park.

Ally’s refreshing approach to continuous improvement encourages managers to give employees the authority and skills to recognize and act on opportunities for process improvement. “With the right processes in place, employees are engaged at an authentic and high level,” she says. “They are tasked to improve the company’s processes every day. They are empowered to make bold suggestions and try new things. And, importantly, they are allowed to try and fail, and try again.”

Ally emphasizes that when employees feel they are contributing in a significant way to their employer’s success and ongoing improvement, they feel more connected to the company and motivated to initiate positive changes. It’s the perfect virtuous circle.

She also encourages business leaders to embrace small steps. “Big CI events are important tools,” she says, “but leveraging incremental daily improvements can yield big results and help your next kaizen or 5S stick.”

Ally explains that the best managers integrate these strategies into daily processes, with employees constantly asking how things can be done better. These process improvements are not add-on tasks, but ever-present aspects of company culture, compounding over time to yield great benefits.

Ally has shared her practical, manageable approach to continuous improvement and employee engagement with countless companies across the state. Her insights can help your business continue to meet customer demands, improve the bottom line, and retain your employees.

I’m particularly excited that this in-person workshop will take place at Hennepin Technical College, an important partner of ours at Enterprise Minnesota. You will leave the workshop understanding how:

•    Small improvements can add significant value by compounding over time
•    To incorporate lean thinking into all areas of your organization
•    Employee engagement is key to CI and overall retention
•    Improved productivity starts at the top

Who Should Attend

Any manufacturer who knows basic lean concepts and has implemented early steps in Value Stream Mapping, 5S, and Kaizen events, yet seeks a higher level of continuous improvement.

Register here for Ally’s January 26 workshop.

View all Enterprise Minnesota upcoming events here.

Industry News

Summit Academy adds training in North Minneapolis for food manufacturing
January 5, MSP Business Journal

MN prosthetist building limbs for Ukrainian soldiers, civilians
January 3, Detroit Lakes Online

Senator’s View: Work in DC ensuring Duluth’s place as economic hub
January 2, Duluth News Tribune

Millions earmarked for MN projects in $1.7 trillion federal spending package
December 31, Star Tribune

Premier Marine continues growth and adds several new dealerships
December 31, Monticello Times

Job losses at Pembina, ND bus plant will have large ripple effect for the region
December 30, KFGO.com

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