The University of Michigan College of Engineering selected Sunrise Windows to host a multi-industry workshop this week focused on the “Evolution of Lean Manufacturing.” The three-day course, held by Toyota Kata experts, included hands-on training at the Sunrise facility as a way to demonstrate the competitive advantages of lean principles in a live environment.

The workshop, held at the company’s Temperance, Mich., facility was attended by 42 managers from a broad variety of industries from as far away as China. The workshop presented a management approach to lean designed to enable companies to move effectively through unpredictable territory to a higher level of performance.

“Toyota Kata is a way of managing to meet daily challenges,” says Jay Vander Zwaag, one of the workshop instructors. “There is a shift in focus going on in the lean community, moving away from periodic continuous improvement staff-led events to daily coaching for improvement by line leaders and managers.”

“Being asked to host this University of Michigan workshop is not only recognition of our five years’ progress in our lean journey,” says Mark Wallach, manager of continuous improvement for Sunrise Windows, “but it also gives our team the next tools to enable our continued process improvement efforts.”

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