Articles & Interviews

Thinking Outside the Lean Box from Shingo Webinars
January 15, 2024

Discover the secrets to fostering innovation beyond conventional methodologies in this webinar. Learn from the experience of Goodyear, a company that transformed its innovation culture long before implementing Lean in the innovation center. The webinar will delve into universal and timeless principles that propelled Goodyear’s success, including the explicit goal of obsoleting products, promoting courage and prudent risk-taking, and fostering collaboration across functions.

Explore how Goodyear’s innovation culture, recognized with the AME Excellence award, not only facilitated a quick Lean transformation but also played a pivotal role in avoiding bankruptcy. The webinar will highlight crucial aspects such as the role of clear goals in creating alignment, the importance of crude prototypes in idea demonstration, and the understanding that not every innovation attempt succeeds, requiring patience and trust in people.

Join us for an enlightening session with industry veterans who spent 30 years at Goodyear, unraveling the principles that drove successful innovation. Gain insights into engaging leaders in the development of new ideas and discover the synergy between people skills crucial for Lean initiatives and those essential for thriving innovation. Don’t miss this opportunity to think outside the box and enhance your organization’s innovative potential.

From a Farm in Luxembourg to Factories and a Shingo Award on Lean Blog Interviews Podcast
May 2, 2023

This podcast discusses Lean and innovation — how they co-exist, how Lean Product Development drives innovation, and how to truly engage people by leading with humility and respecting people.

Listen to the full interview on The Lean Blog Interviews Podcast.

Culture Change with Norbert Majerus on State of Readiness Podcast
February 13, 2023

Join Joseph Paris, with guest Norbert Majerus; Author of “Lean-Driven Innovation” and “Winning Innovation” and a Lean Champion (Ret) from the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company.

They discuss culture change; a topic which appears to be on many people’s minds. But people rarely speak of what they would like to change from what, to what. They share the phrase “culture change” and just leave it hang there in the air like a cartoon bubble and leave it to others to figure out what was meant; a grand assumption on everyone’s part.

Listen or watch the podcast at

Norbert Majerus Interview on The Success Patterns Show
January 2023

How is it that most entrepreneurs hustle and are always busy and struggle to take just one step forward, only to fall two steps back? They’re dedicated, determined and driven, but only a few finally break through and win. This show uncovers those quantum leap patterns of highly successful people so you can simply model what they do and apply to your future success.

Watch the full interview on The Success Patterns Show website.

Rethinking what Toyota taught us – Tesla here we come from Shingo Institute
December 9, 2022

Is Tesla’s success a wake-up call for Toyota and other car manufacturers? Is there a Lean or operational excellence principle that can help established companies succeed with breakthrough innovations? Does Toyota have a tool in its repertoire?

Yes! I call it a “Lean culture of innovation.” It consists primarily of a Lean culture — of which Toyota is still the benchmark — and an innovation culture based on principles that foster ideas and a fast, cost-effective, disruptive innovation process.

How to Win at Innovation from Idea Toasters
September 28, 2022

It takes agility and speed for companies to win at innovaton: Agility enables companies to identify market opportunities and adapt their processes and products to capitalize on changing customer or market demands. And the faster that products and services get to customers — speed — the greater the advantage over competitors that try to keep up (and by the time they do, they’re chasing the next new entry).

Time for Innovation Excellence on Braden Kelley’s Human-Centered Change and Innovation
September 2022

Lean manufacturing and the Toyota Production System started an industrial revolution (at least for those who adopted it). Transformative events that began in the automotive industry spread into many other sectors (including healthcare, finance, even innovation). However, the term “lean” may not have been the best description for what was occurring then or now.

How to Take a Novel Approach to Innovation on The Supply Chain Now Podcast
July 11, 2022

After leading a legendary R&D transformation during his tenure at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, he turned to the written word to share his wisdom and insights on the application of #lean principles.

Join Billy Ray Taylor and Norbert for this episode of The Winning Link Podcast, where they discuss Norbert’s new novel, Winning Innovation, along with the importance of culture to transformation, how to formulate the right recipe for innovation, and more.

Listen to the podcast.

Winning Innovation on Mind the Innovation Podcast
May 17, 2022

Innovations are critical for businesses. They help companies stay on top of new developments and allow them to implement new tactics in new and evolving markets and gain a greater market share. Innovation also helps create opportunities for higher productivity and a more productive workforce. A culture where all ideas are supported encourages employees to express ideas that may become catalysts for innovation.

Click here to listen to the podcast.

This Time It’s Business Fiction? on the Blueprint Podcast
May 5, 2022

On this week’s episode of the Blueprint podcast we had an incredible conversation with Norbert Majerus, Lean Champion at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company and Author of Lean-Driven Innovation on his new book. This time it’s business fiction?

Click here to listen to the full episode.

Lean Ethics by Jean-Claude Kihn and Norbert Majerus
May 5, 2021

Lean thinking has created wealth for many companies and must set new standards for how Lean leaders and practitioners should look at ethics.

Ethical behaviors are crucial and the lack thereof can be detrimental – just look what happened to major companies such as VW and Boeing. But what we see in the press about ethics violations are just the tip of the iceberg. Most companies are not even aware that what is hidden under the surface can be equally or more detrimental to them.

Is the implementation of traditional Lean processes and behaviors sufficient to avoid the severe consequences of unethical behavior? How can good Lean thinking help?

These and many more questions are explored and illustrated with personal experiences by former Goodyear President Jean-Claude Kihn and by their former Lean Champion and current Shingo Faculty Fellow Norbert Majerus.

Read the articles at
Part 1: Grasping the Situation
Part 2: Principles and Implementation

Norbert Majerus on the Unlock Innovation Podcast
January 18, 2020

“Your process is important, I think the people part. It’s just as important, if not more important” – Norbert Majerus

Listen to the podcast with Norbert Majerus and learn more about the importance of the companies behaviors, processes, and company culture.

New Shingo Faculty Fellow: Norbert Majerus
December 9, 2020

Shingo Faculty Fellows are well known in the Lean world and represent the Shingo Institute in educational settings.

Mr. Majerus implemented a principles-based Lean product development process at the three global innovation centers of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. For more than a decade he was Goodyear’s Lean champion in research and development.

In 2016, he published his first book, Lean-Driven Innovation, which received the Shingo Research Award.

Lean Transformation Podcast with Gotz Muller Consulting
December 2, 2019

Listen in as Gotz Muller Consulting interviews Norbert Majerus in this podcast about lean transformation.

Webinar & Podcast: Fast is Better Than Slow! from Lean Frontiers
April 10, 2019

This insightful interview with Norbert Majerus was recorded as a webinar video and audio podcast. Watch the Webinar or Listen to the Podcast.

Lean-Driven Innovation for Product Managers with Norbert Majerus from The Everyday Innovator Podcast
January 27, 2019

The principles of Lean-Driven Innovation lead to more value for customers and faster value capture (e.g., revenue) for organizations. The principles can be applied to any industry, but for our guest, they grew out of the R&D and product development practices at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company.

Our guest is Norbert Majerus, who was the Lean Champion in Innovation at Goodyear, where he worked for nearly 40 years before recently retiring. Now he enjoys sharing his experience with others. He captures much of the practices he learned in his new book, Lean-Driven Innovation.

The principles of Lean-Driven Innovation lead to more value for customers and faster value capture (e.g., revenue) for organizations. The principles can be applied to any industry, but for our guest, they grew out of the R&D and product development practices at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. Our guest is Norbert Majerus, who was the Lean Champion in Innovation at Goodyear, where he worked for nearly 40 years before recently retiring. Now he enjoys sharing his experience with others. He captures much of the practices he learned in his new book, Lean-Driven Innovation.”

Read the article or listen to the podcast.

Transforming from the Inside Out by Norbert Majerus
January 8, 2019

When I talk at conferences about leading a lean transformation, I like to ask the audience for the most important metrics they track in their organizations. I write down their answers, which range from lead time to cost to inventory. Then I ask: “What is the most difficult part in your transformation — changing the process or managing the people?” So far, the unanimous answer has always been that the people part is the most difficult. Many who have worked with advanced transformations also comment that managing people is the most important part.

Read the full article at

ITEC speakers touch on smart factories, digitalization, lean manufacturing from Rubber & Plastics News
October 11, 2018

Advanced manufacturing processes, applied to both facilities and people, are the way toward profitability and product excellence for tire manufacturers, according to experts speaking at the International Tire Exhibition & Conference in Akron.

Read the full article.

Engineer’s Day Interview by RTL in Luxembourg
February 4, 2018

Lean PD Best Practices: Goodyear from Lean Analytics Association
December 15, 2017

Goodyear’s Lean Product development journey started in 2005 on solid foundations of past improvement initiatives and continued with a dedicated team from 2006. Norbert Majerus – the Lean Champion at Goodyear, book author and Shingo Prize winner – has led the lean transformation and has described it in detail in his book Lean-Driven Innovation. He has also identified 55 Lean R&D principles applied within Goodyear which are mapped using the Lean Analytics Association (LAA) Lean Innovation Model.

Norbert Majerus at Lean Innovation Forum from Lean Analytics Association
October 2017

At the Lean Innovation Forum (#LAALiF) The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company Lean Champion Norbert Majerus takes us on the journey of insight out transformation and the critically of engaging people to succeed in any lean innovation effort.

Sustainable Lean and Innovation: Transforming from the Inside Out from AME Southeastern Region Newsletter
October 2017

Whether you’re leading a lean cultural transformation in a factory, a hospital or an innovation center, your most critical focus should be on people rather than tools and techniques. That’s the view of Norbert Majerus, Goodyear’s lean champion in research and development. “Some leaders, when they think of a lean transformation, create a new organization chart or issue a decree to implement lean, when it’s all about engaging the people,” he said. His presentation topic for the 2017 AME annual conference in Boston: “Transforming from the Inside Out.”

Read the complete article.

2017 Lean Analytics Forum Workshop Introduction by Lean Analytics Association
August 21, 2017

“People must be fully engaged in the lean product development transformation to produce sustainable results.” – Norbert Majerus a Lean Champion, book author and Shingo prize winner.
Join Norbert and many other lean practitioners at the 3-day Lean Innovation Forum at Toyota in Madrid between 24 and 26 October.

More about the event & registrations:

More about Norbert’s workshop:

Goodyear Engineer Offers Lean Start-Up Workshops from
August 7, 2017

Norbert Majerus, a well-known engineer and author of the Lean-Driven Innovation booklet from Reifenhersteller Goodyear , has developed a training program for “Lean Start-ups” and innovative thinking approaches in the development process. Two of the workshops offered by him in this context are also available to participants outside the Goodyear Group. The first of these took place at the end of July in Akron (Ohio / USA) at the tire manufacturer and included, among other things, the inspection of Goodyear’s NASCAR tire production on the ground. Another appointment is scheduled for the 14th of August in Californian Cal Poly / San Luis Obispo.

Lean-Driven Innovation with Norbert Majerus by Jacqueline Hofstede
April 12, 2017

The book was awarded the prestigious Shingo Prize, and it will inspire you to improve product development, gain more time for innovation, and achieve sustainable success!

Norbert Majerus Interview at Cal Poly Industrial Technology
February 1, 2017

Review: Lean-Driven Innovation from Research-Technology Management, Vol. 60, No. 1
January-February 2017

How can companies maximize the end-to-end business value of their R&D activities? Lean-Driven Innovation provides a practical and believable approach, based on a decade of experience with Lean in R&D at Goodyear and the author’s nearly four decades as a program leader, process quality expert, and technologist.

Goodyear Innovation Center receives 2016 AME Excellence Award
September 16, 2016

Goodyear Innovation Center has done an outstanding job of developing sound, complete and useful standards for nearly all areas AME examined. The steps of design, technology development, skill development, strategic sourcing, product and platform development, and other areas were all found to be well thought out and robust.

LiF 2016: Lean-Driven Innovation in Goodyear from Lean Analytics
September 14, 2016

How can applying lean principles in R&D, even at the fuzzy front-end of the innovation cycle can benefit you? Norbert Majerus will explain at Lean Innovation Forum 2016.

Book release: Lean Driven Innovation by Norbert Majerus from L’Echo des entreprises, a publication of Fedil
July 2016

“Market when the market needs and matching the market demand.”

“Lean Method” Optimizes Development Processes from Gummibereifung
June 1, 2016

As Goodyear has succeeded in optimizing the processes in the field of research and development using the Lean method, a current specialist book describes.

Goodyear “lean” book author to get national award from the Akron Beacon Journal
April 15, 2016

Goodyear’s Norbert Majerus will be given the Shingo Research and Professional Publication Award for his book, “Lean-Driven Innovation: Powering Product Development at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company.”

Majerus named Shingo Award Winner for Goodyear Book
April 13, 2016

Norbert Majerus’s Lean Driven Innovation announced as 2016 Shingo Award winner.

Innovator helps Goodyear streamline operation
March 17, 2016

Lean methods long have been applied to manufacturing processes in the rubber industry. That is not the case with research and development.

Lean Champion Leading Lean-Driven Innovation
March 9, 2016

A Lean Champion at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company for the last ten years, Norbert Majerus has deployed lean product development processes at Goodyear’s three innovation centers in Akron, Ohio, Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, and Hanau, Germany.

Goodyear leans on expert to drive innovation from Rubber & Plastics News
March 7, 2016

Goodyear exec touts success, savings that lean principles can bring to R&D from Crain’s Cleveland Business
January 21, 2016

Goodyear’s got a guru with some unexpected product development advice that he said works for the Akron-based tire and rubber company – and could work for others as well.

Manufacturing Tomorrow at Ohio Manufacturing Institute
December 21, 2015

Manufacturing Tomorrow is a podcast series by the Ohio Manufacturing Institute at The Ohio State University. Featuring the perspectives of manufacturing leaders, focusing on the advanced manufacturing innovations, solutions and partnerships that exist and that will propel industry in the future.

Stream Manufacturing Tomorrrow’s interview with Norbert Majerus:

When It Comes to Product Development, There’s No Time to Lose from Industry Week
November 30, 2015

Both Goodyear and Google are benchmarks for innovation speed.

Goodyear’s Great Year: An LPPD Success Story from The Lean Post
November 18, 2015

Lean product and process development (LPPD) may not be a mainstream practice just yet, but it’s rapidly catching on. Part of this gain in popularity can be attributed to the fact that, unlike many other lean principles, LPPD is not industry-specific and can make an impact virtually anywhere.

Lean-Driven Innovation by Norbert Majerus at Goodyear

In writing “Lean-Driven Innovation: Powering Product Development at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company,” Norbert Majerus incorporates the voices of real people and highlights real events to provide a behind-the-curtain look at how Goodyear transformed its product development process, slashing cycle time by more than 70 percent and providing a three-fold increase in on-time delivery.

Lean Driven Innovation at Gemba Academy in Cincinnati
October 1, 2015

Interview with Norbert Majerus about his book “Lean-Driven Innovation”

Goodyear Visits PeopleFlo to Discuss Innovation Driven Product Development
December 3, 2014

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company visited PeopleFlo in Franklin Park, IL to share ideas on how to use lean philosophy and tools to foster innovation driven product development.