Journey to Excellence brings together leadership keynotes from global organisations to share experiences, lessons learned and best practice in Operational Excellence.


Best selling Leadership author and Chief instructor on TV’s ‘SAS: Who Dares Wins’


First Man In: Leading from the front

Ant Middleton, a former SAS soldier and adventurer, now applies lessons from the military to the business world. In 2018 he authored his bestselling book ‘First Man In: Leading From The Front’ with its focus on leadership and confronting challenges. At JTE 2019 Ant will share experiences and insight that will give you a fascinating, fresh perspective on how to achieve success.

After 13 years’ service in the military, with four years as a Special Boat Service (SBS) sniper, Ant Middleton is the epitome of what it takes to excel. He served in the SBS, the naval wing of the special forces, the Royal Marines and 9 Parachute Squadron Royal, achieving what is known as the ‘holy trinity’ of the UK’s elite forces. As a point man in the SBS, Ant was always the first man through the door, the first man into the dark and the first man in harm’s way.

Best known for his role as Chief Instructor on ‘SAS: Who Dares Wins’ (Channel 4), Ant has become a much-loved master of survival and endurance on and off-screen, spurred by his formidable career in the UK’s elite forces.

With an insatiable appetite for adventure, 2017 saw Ant front ‘Mutiny’ (Channel 4), a show that re-enacted Captain William Bligh’s voyage following his crew’s mutiny, commonly known as the ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’. Ant has also fronted Channel 4’s survivalist programme Escape. His recent expedition saw him conquer one of the biggest feats known to man, Mount Everest, in the Channel 4 hit Extreme Everest.

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Assistant General Manager, Toyota Motor Manufacturing (UK)


Leadership, Behaviours and Engagement at Toyota

Much has been written by academics on the Toyota Production System (TPS), from leadership and engagement to coaching for improvement. At JTE 2019 you will get an insider view of what really happens. Sharing insights covering over 20 years, Kevin will illustrate:

TPS and its role as a tool for Human Resource development

  • The unwritten deeper meanings found in the TPS
  • The one constant tool in TPS that requires continuous development and application
  • The Toyota approach to coaching for engagement

Developing behaviours that support Human Resource development

  • The first area of focus before changing behaviours
  • A key behavioural tool applied within Toyota, and when to use it
  • Values, beliefs and behaviours

Key behaviours that really matter

  • What are the key leadership beliefs and behaviours at Toyota and how they are deployed
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Chairman of the XONITEK Group of Companies & Founder of the Operational Excellence Society


Creating a ‘State of Readiness’ in your organisation

The competitive advantage of the 20th Century company went to the companies who had a command of process excellence. But the enemy of the 21st Century company is time. We live in a world of disruption – whether technology, competition, globalisation, and geopolitical – that is occurring at an accelerated pace compared to a few years ago. It will not be the company facing disruption or causing disruption that will prevail, but rather the company that is in the better state of readiness  ‐ the one that can increasingly see the opportunities and threats further beyond the horizon and can devise and deploy decisive responses more quickly.

To win, we need to understand what our existing capacities and capabilities are (and where we are lacking). We have to continually hone our ability to engage such that success is as pre‐ordained as is possible.

In this session, we will explore the importance and construct of an organisation that is nimble, understands its capacity and capabilities ‐ as well as its weaknesses and limitations ‐ and is proficient in accelerating the decision‐making process and reacting to changes in circumstances as being the strategic advantage.

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Professor of Quality Management and LSS Master Black Belt, Heriot-Watt University


Why Process Excellence Transformation Fails in Organisations

Although Process Excellence is an important aspect of improving the efficiency and effectiveness of business processes, research has shown that between 70 to 90% of such initiatives fail, despite the nature and size of the organisation. This keynote will provide insight and research into some of the most cited reasons for failure as well as tips for mitigating the chances this happening.

Professor Jiju Antony is recognised worldwide as a leader in Lean Six Sigma methodology for achieving and sustaining process excellence. He is a Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society (UK), Fellow of the Chartered Quality Institute (CQI), Fellow of the Institute of Operations Management (FIOM), and a Fellow of the Institute of the Six Sigma Professionals (ISSP).

Professor Antony is currently coaching and mentoring a number of Lean Six Sigma projects from various companies in the UK ranging from manufacturing, service to public sector organisations.

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Vice President Manufacturing, Bosch Thermotechnology


Transform your business:
Create a Culture of Continuous Improvement

In 2012, Armin was faced with a new challenge- take control of a German Bosch plant with over 1,000 staff and close the plant due to high labour costs. He has been with the company for 25 years, with 10 years in the USA, Mexico and Spain. Much of this time was spent as a lean production expert with projects realised in more than 100 Bosch plants in 27 countries, as well as numerous supplier locations.

Armin will describe the plant turnaround through focusing on employee engagement and Lean management. Delegates will learn how the site has reached high levels of Operational Excellence in production and logistics, turning the site around into a highly profitable and cost-effective plant.

Armin will share how his biggest opportunity is combining Lean Production methods with Industry 4.0 to further reduce lead times within the value chain and change to make-to-order for all products.

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Really useful hearing about other companies' experiences in implementing Lean and CI – especially the difficulties they have! Reassuring that we can share and learn from similar difficulties – make it three days!

Continuous Improvement ManagerSafestyle UK Plc

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