Goodyear Visits PeopleFlo to Discuss Innovation Driven Product Development

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.

“The opportunity to share ideas with Goodyear’s Norbert Majerus was special because not many companies take advantage of the strong synergies between lean methods, innovation and product development”, said William Blankemeier, President of PeopleFlo. “Beginning in 2005, Norbert has implemented a principles-based lean product development process at the three global innovation centers of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, first in Akron, Ohio, and then in Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, and Hanau, Germany.”

Goodyear’s Norbert Majerus sharing ideas with the PeopleFlo team.

Hearing the Goodyear journey first hand was inspiring. In 2005, Goodyear’s R&D department was underperforming. The organization developed high-quality tires, but the projects were not always successful. Goodyear embarked on a major initiative to transform its innovation creation processes by learning, understanding, and applying lean product development principles. Within five years, Goodyear saw its product development cycle times slashed by 70 percent, on-time delivery performance rise close to 100 percent, and throughput improve three-fold – all achieved with no increase in the R&D budget.

The PeopleFlo team is looking forward to reading Norbert’s upcoming book by Prodictivity Press entitled “Lean-Driven Innovation: Powering Product Development at The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company”.

“I am very impressive by what PeopleFlo is doing!” said Norbert Majerus, Goodyear. “I was especially impressed what you were able to do on the project for the multinational chemical company.”