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Getting LEAN!

Getting Lean

I would like to take this opportunity to catch everyone up on the progress the executive team is making towards our 1st quarter ‘ROCK’ goal. If you aren’t too familiar with it, please take a moment to review the Vision Board next time you are in the office. We are interviewing LEAN consulting firms to come in and evaluate our Lone Star. This falls into our One Lone Star initiative and our goal of reaching a gross margin of 42.9 % when all regions are combined.

What is LEAN?

For those of you who are wondering what LEAN is and what it means for Lone Star, LEAN methodology was created in the 1950s by Toyota to improve production and eliminate waste. I say ‘methodology’ because, from what I can gather, there are many forms of LEAN that can be applied to any type of work. I have recently learned that the LEAN framework is at the core of project management.

By contracting a LEAN consultant, we will gain an outsider's analysis/perspective on our current processes and procedures and get advice on ways to cut costs and become more efficient. If you are wondering why we are doing this, well, there are multiple reasons. One reason is to improve our Gross Margin. While we know we are working hard in every department, our Gross Margin is not where we want it to be based on historical data. Another reason is to ensure every office is on the same page. We are not quite doing things the same in every region. This process will help us to create a process that works for everyone while keeping our high standard of quality and possibly improving our efficiency.

Work in Progress

Ron Kruse, Chief Operating Officer of Houston, is leading the ROCK and is doing an outstanding job. Ron reached out to 5 consulting firms and had introductory meetings with each. These meetings included the consulting firms plus all the COO’s, and Joshua Hiett representing Lone Star Corporate. This is a huge endeavor, thank you Ron Kruse and team.

Here is a list of all the Firms we interviewed:

· Lean Six Sigma Experts

· Firefly Consulting

· Dugan Associates

· Pivotal Resources

· MedSys Group

We came away with a ton of information about how they would go about finding the information they need to help us get where we need to be and what that might look like. A little inside information, out of the five there was one that stood out because of their approach. They would come and train our team to look at things from a different perspective and give us the tools to make the adjustments needed. We thought that was an interesting concept. We have a little work left to do here but we are making good progress. We hope that any decision we make is going to be the best decision for all of us here at Lone Star.

- Victor Gonzalez

Chief Operating Officer



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