Saturday, June 20, 2015

Manufacturing Breakthrough Bootcamps

Manufacturing Breakthrough Bootcamp Coming to Michigan and Minnesota

To all of my friends in the Midwest, I will be facilitating two Manufacturing Breakthrough Bootcamps in Michigan and Minnesota on July 15th and 16th respectively.  In these bootcamps I will demonstrate how to identify your company’s key leverage points so that your improvement efforts are focused in the right areas. I’ll show you how to combine the Theory of Constraints, Lean and Six Sigma (TLS) in a way that will jump start your improvement efforts and deliver new levels of performance and profitability that you will be able to sustain to fuel future growth.  So what are the details and how do you sign up for these bootcamps?

Who should attend: The workshop is best suited to decision makers in a manufacturing organization and staff in the following areas: Business Owner (Owner, President), Operations (Production Manager, Operations Manager), Finance/Accounting (CFO, Controller, Purchasing & Inventory)
What does it cost: Amazingly the cost is just $35.00! How is this possible when this type of course usually costs $500 or more per person?  It’s possible because M1 is subsidizing the cost for my time for your benefit!  I don’t think you’ll ever find another deal quite like this one!!


When: Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Where: DoubleTree Hotel, 800 Harker Street, Port Huron, MI 48060
Time: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm (Name badge and materials pick-up begins at 8:00 am)
Inclusions:  Catered Lunch (Breakfast buffet is available through the Doubletree Hotel for approximately $10.00)
Space is limited: Pre-registration is required for the Manufacturing Breakthrough Bootcamp.  We already have several manufacturers signed up, so make sure to secure your spots soon!
Here’s the Michigan link to sign-up:
First come, first served, registration closes June 25th!


When: Thursday, July 16, 2015
Where: New Brighton Community Center, 400 10th Street NW, New Brighton, MN 55112
Time: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm (Name badge and materials pick-up begins at 8:00 am)
Inclusions:  Catered Lunch (Coffee and donuts will be available for breakfast)
Space is limited: Pre-registration is required for the Manufacturing Breakthrough Bootcamp.  We already have several manufacturers signed up, so make sure to secure your spots soon!

Here’s the Minnesota link to sign up:
First come, first served, registration closes July 9th!

I have been helping ECi M1 since November of last year and I have to tell you that I’ve never worked with a company that is so focused on their customers.  I just returned from a trip to Australia with M1 and while I was there, I facilitated four of these same bootcamps in different areas of Australia.  And based upon both the comments I received from the participants plus feedback from a survey, the bootcamp were very well received.  I encourage everyone who is interested in a new approach to improvement to come and hear for yourselves how to do so in this bootcamp.  Here is a video of the manufacturers we interviewed last year after attending our last US bootcamp:

I look forward to seeing everyone in Michigan and Minnesota.

Bob Sproull

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Epiphanized - 2nd Edition is Now Available

Since returning home from Australia, my new publisher has sent me my free copies of Epiphanized - 2nd Edition.  All I can say is WOW!!!  This second edition is so much better than the first edition in so many ways.  Bruce and I made some significant changes to this book, but especially in the Appendices.  In fact Bruce included a new appendix on System Thinking.  In addition, our new publisher added an index where readers can find key topics within both the novel portion of the book and in the appendices.  This means that if the reader is interested in reading more on a specific subject, they can just go to the Index and find those pages where it's discussed.

Hind sight is always 20x20 but I should have known that our new publisher, CRC Press, would do a superb job since they were my publisher for my first two books.  Even the paper used to print the book is superior to the first edition's.  I wish I had a PDF copy to send to everyone, but unfortunately I do not.  My thanks to Taylor and Francis for doing such a superb job on this 2nd edition.  Visit the Taylor and Francis Web site at and the CRC Press Website at to read more.

Bob Sproull

Finally Home from Australia

My wife and I are finally home from Australia and I must say the trip back home was even longer than the trip to this wonderful country.  We left Australia at 10:00 AM on the 9th of June with a scheduled arrival in Atlanta at 5:30 PM on the 9th.  As we were preparing to land in Atlanta, there were severe thunderstorms happening and the pilot was asked to circle the airport until they cleared.  Unfortunately, there was a problem with the amount of fuel so the flight was diverted to Knoxville, TN to refuel.  As it turned out, my wife and I didn't make it home to Kennesaw, GA and in bed until 10:30 PM.  Needless to say we were both exhausted.

My presentation at the Manufacturing Week symposium was very well received as were my four workshops in Melbourne and Sydney.  In fact they were so well received that I am invited back again next year for a repeat.  I was also told that on July 15th I will be facilitating a Manufacturing Bootcamp in Port Huron, Michigan and then in Minnesota on July 16th.  I'm not sure where the Minnesota venue will be, but stay tuned to the ECi M1 website for details.  Here is a link to my blog postings on their website:

This posting is one for a whitepaper I've written on my integrated TOC, Lean and Six Sigma improvement methodology.  As I've explained in a past post, I have never been associated with a company before that is as focused on their customer base as ECI M1 and it is a pleasure being associated with them.

Bob Sproull

Monday, June 8, 2015

Many thanks to my new friends in Australia

Tomorrow morning my wife and I will begin our long journey back to the United States from Australia.  I must say that our time spent in this wonderful country was full of fun times.  On May 22nd we arrived in Melbourne where I spoke at the National Manufacturer's Week conference and made lots of new friends.  From what I was told, the overflow audience was the largest of the week.  And then the following week I delivered two, 1-day workshops and again the response was very good.  The first day was for customers and the second day was for potential customers (i.e. prospects).  I then flew to Sydney and delivered two more workshops and again, both were received quite well.

My hat is off to the company that had me come to Australia, ECi Solutions.  They are an ERP software developer and judging from the comments received in both Melbourne and Sydney, ECi Solutions is a highly respected company.  The reason my hat is off to this company is that in all of my years, I have never been approached by a company to teach their customers (and prospects) how to become more profitable.

In all of my sessions, I presented my method for combining Lean and Six Sigma with the Theory of Constraints and I must say that judging the comments I received, each and every attendee thoroughly enjoyed what I had to say.  They all walked away with a new tool kit, so to speak.  The most popular individual tool of all was the Goal Tree, but Goldratt's 5 Focusing Steps was the best new concept they have heard about in years.  They were able to see right away why their LSS initiatives could be enhanced.  Another popular concept was Throughput Accounting as was the TOC Replenishment Model.

I want to thank all of my new friends for the amazing hospitality shown to not only me, but to my wife as well.  We both enjoyed our time in Australia immensely and would welcome the opportunity to return.  Having said this, my wife has made it very clear to me that if we are to return to Australia, we will first have to spend several night in Hawaii, just to break up the plane time into more eatable chunks.  Coming to Australia we spent roughly 22 hours in the planes while returning to the US we will spend about 21.5 hours.  I guess I can see her point.
Bob Sproull