I am Gemma, Director of Spark Improvement Limited. I started this company because I am hugely passionate about Continuous Improvement and I want to help manufacturers be the very best they can be.
I studied Mechanical Engineering at University. I’m definitely an engineer at heart – I love to take things apart (physically or metaphorically) and then rebuild them stronger and better than ever.
I first learned about Manufacturing and Continuous Improvement in my second year – Ford, Deming, Taylor, McGregor, Hawthorne, Ohno…..it was all fascinating. How these incredible people worked to innovate and transform the manufacturing industry, how each of them completely changed the game and made history.
As soon as I got in the workplace I realised how all of these principles, theories, and tools were still pertinent. How Lean Manufacturing was still so relevant and how there was so much to gain from applying the learning.
I well and truly had ‘the bug’ and have since been a Continuous Improvement Manager for a few different companies. I wanted to experience different industries and learn as much about factories and manufacturing as possible, so I was really lucky to work in the Automotive, Pharmaceutical, Dairy, Cosmetics and Toiletries, Food and Medical Device industries. All quite different, with their own quirks and nuances, but also all quite alike, with similar issues and challenges.
I have had some amazing experiences and learned a lot over the last 20 years, and now I am building a business to take my experience and knowledge to help other manufacturers, and their CI Managers, work towards being the very best versions of themselves.
I want this blog to be part of that, to help me reach as many people as possible and to be a resource for anyone in manufacturing to think differently and be inspired.
You see, for me, it’s all about the lightbulbs.
Let me explain. Whenever I have been on a training course, or working with a team on an improvement project, or talking or presenting about an aspect of CI – there will be a number of people in the room who suddenly ‘get it’.
Sometimes people will announce that moment:
‘Oh, wow, I see now how that makes sense!’
‘Now I see what you mean’
‘Wow, this could really help my team to get better results!’
Whereas with other people, you can see the expression on their face change, usually with a knowing nod of the head. You literally see the lightbulb switch on in their head.
That’s what I get excited about. Seeing people realise that they can make something better.
That there is a way to drive sustainable improvement.
That they could do, or be part of, something to make a difference.
That work does not need to be about coming in and doing the same thing day after day.
That there are ways that everyone can work together to continuously strive to improve.
So, my mission is to help turn on as many of those lightbulbs as possible. Either through the work I do directly with manufacturers; through the training I deliver; through speaking at conferences (I’m speaking about Problem Solving at this conference in June 2019); or through this website.
I’ve started this blog to help with my quest. My aim is that I will post content that will help you, inspire you, make you think, and maybe make you smile.
Hopefully, I might switch on a lightbulb or two in your head, but also (and perhaps more importantly to me) hopefully I’ll help you switch on lightbulbs in those people around you.
I’m planning on each post being fairly short and easy to digest. More of a ‘read it with my morning coffee’ than ‘clear my diary and find a meeting room so I can concentrate on this’.
I’m hoping there will be as much, if not more, to gain from the comments and discussion after each post. And I’m hoping you might spread the word if you enjoy it – I want to reach as many people as possible.
I hope this blog helps you, and your organization, be the very best you can be.
So, are you in the manufacturing world? Is there a particular subject or topic you would like to know more about within Continuous Improvement and Change Management?
Please say hi in the comments and let me know what you want to read about.