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When I first joined the KaiNexus team in 2011, we were just coming to market and had no paying customers. The vision of our co-founders, Dr. Greg Jacobson and Matt Paliulis, was compelling and they had taken significant steps toward bringing KaiNexus into the world.
Last month, we had our first ever KaiNexus User Conference in Austin. We've grown to the point where we had about 30 customers join us to learn from each other. The map, below, shows the home locations represented by the attendees.
Hopefully, the 2016 User Conference will be a more global map!
It was truly exciting to see our commited and passionate customers make the trip. It means that the KaiNexus continuous improvement software is making a difference in their work and their organizations. That's powerful and that means a lot to me, personally, as it does to the rest of our team.
Some of our customers expressed the need to come and share, to give back. They're excited about their progress in spreading continuous improvement. They are proud of what they have accomplished, but they're also humble in realizing that they have challenges to address.
Our customers represented many industries:
Even with the diversity of industries, they still all face similar challenges. Continuous improvement isn't about a specific industry. The Toyota Production System isn't about being better at building cars. It's all about people and leadership.
We discussed important questions that are pretty universal:
- How do we engage more of our employees in improvement?
- What is the role of leaders in creating a culture of continuous improvement?
- How do we help shift people from the old view of "approve or reject ideas" to one where we're "coaching people on ideas" and finding something to implement 90% of the time?
- Why don't employees always speak up in the workplace? How can leaders create an environment that's safe for people to speak up and participate in improvement?
Our customers gave presentations and participated in discussions on these topics. I know the User Conference made a difference... and it's great to see KaiNexus making a difference in so many industries. But, our technology wouldn't be helpful without the great work done by our customers, including those who couldn't attend in Austin.
Thanks to them! It's great being a part of the KaiNexus team!
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