Launching the new Mid-West Lean Network (from left): Gene Leonard, managing director, LBSPartners; Helen Downes, chief executive, Shannon Chamber; Alan Keogh, plant manager and Neil Enright, GLSS site development leader, Molex Shannon. Photo: Eamon Ward.
A new business network, aimed at encouraging companies to adopt Lean practices, has been set up in the Shannon region.
The brainchild of Shannon Chamber, the Mid-West Lean Network, which was officially launched at a ‘Lean in Business Seminar’ held in Molex, Shannon, will be managed by Shannon Chamber, chaired in the first instance by Molex Shannon and directed by LBS Partners. The network is open to businesses across all sectors who wish to learn about and introduce Lean into their organisations.
Introducing the network, LBS Partners’ Gene Leonard said that its focus would be very much directed at setting a new enterprise excellence standard in the Mid-West with the ultimate aim of becoming part of a thriving group of such networks throughout Ireland. The Mid-West Lean Network is now the second regional lean network in Ireland after Waterford Institute of Technology’s Lean Enterprise Excellence Group.
Inaugural network chairman, Neil Enright, GLSS site development leader with Molex stated: “The purpose of the new network is to strengthen and increase an existing culture of Lean within the Shannon and the wider Mid-West region to enable each industry to broaden and strengthen their competitiveness through knowledge sharing and benchmarking against each other and different industries.
“We see this as a key enabler to attract new investment and job growth within the region by making each member more cost effective and better service providers by creating long-term value for their customers.
“Through collaboration with our academic partner, the University of Limerick, we will work to ensure that a pipeline of relevant programmes is available to help strengthen the requisite skill sets. We will also work with government agencies like IDA and Enterprise Ireland to ensure that our members are aware of and can avail of the funding and support available through these agencies’ Lean programmes.”
Speaking at the launch, Shannon Chamber’s chief executive Helen Downes said: “We have been hosting annual Lean in Business seminars since 2011. Their popularity stems from the fact that they give companies the opportunity to see first-hand how Lean works and the benefits that can be derived from becoming Lean.
“We looked at the success of a number of Forums we have already established – the CEO and HR Forums in particular – and thought, why not a Lean network along the same lines. The buy-in has been tremendous and I am delighted that Molex’s Neil Enright has agreed to be the first chair, ably assisted by the Shannon Chamber team and, Gene Leonard and Michelle Whelan from LBS Partners.
“Based on a poll of 13 topics presented at the launch, a roster of Lean topics will be chosen for a series of monthly Lean workshops, which will commence in January 2017. A number of companies have already volunteered to host some of these workshops in their facilities, which is an amazing buy-in already. As evidenced from the presentations at the Lean seminar, the benefits from introducing Lean are quite staggering and we look forward to witnessing an increased robustness in enterprises gained from adopting Lean.”
Companies wishing to become a member of the Mid-West Lean Network should contact Shannon Chamber at firstname.lastname@example.org to register their interest. Membership is free of charge.