Lycoming Wins Shingo Prize

Mike Kraft accepts the Shingo Prize on behalf of Lycoming.

Lycoming Engines has been awarded the prestigious Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence, making it one of only two companies to achieve the honor at the business-wide enterprise level.

Dubbed the Nobel Prize for manufacturing by Business Week magazine, The Shingo Prize is awarded annually by the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University to companies around the globe that achieve world-class operational excellence. The prize was established in 1988 and named in honor of Dr. Shigeo Shingo, the legendary engineer who created many of the Toyota production system’s processes.

“Since 2004, Lycoming has been transforming itself into a globally competitive manufacturer known for its products, innovation and customer service,” said Michael Kraft, Lycoming senior vice president and general manager. “It is a tribute to every member of our team that the Shingo Prize assessors took an extensive look at every aspect of our business–from manufacturing to customer service and all points in between–and found us deserving of the highest honor.”

Businesses become eligible for the Shingo Prize only after they have shown measurable, sustained levels of operational excellence and exhibit a lean culture across all functions. After submitting a comprehensive report based on its achievements over a minimum of three years, the business must then undergo a rigorous multi-day onsite evaluation.

Beginning in 2005, Lycoming committed to lean operational principles, focusing on employee engagement, leadership and teamwork at all levels. In 2008, the Shingo Prize organization recognized Lycoming with its second highest honor, the Shingo Silver Medallion.

“In one of the most challenging economic environments in our country’s history and in our industry, Lycoming Engines has not merely found a way to survive, we have relentlessly improved,” Kraft said. “Furthermore, we were able to keep up the pace even as the Shingo Prize was raising the bar on its own standards for operational excellence.”

For more information on Lycoming engines, visit www.lycoming.textron.com.

KITPLANES Editor Mary Bernard began her career in aviation journalism in 1998 and has worked in publishing for more than 15 years.

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