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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Process Change Manager, SSE
and Team GB Cycling Medallist

Day 1 Keynote
Morning Keynote

GB Cycling ‘Marginal Gains’
and Business Improvement

Having been a Team GB Commonwealth Games cycling medallist and part of the Team GB ‘Marginal Gains’ philosophy, Jenny has successfully transferred from sports to the world of Operational Excellence.

This case study and workshop will provide an insider view of British Cycling’s Marginal Gains Principle and how this was applied to transform British Cycling to be World Class in competitive sports. Jenny will illustrate how now as a Continuous Improvement Leader, she has fused CI and Marginal Gains philosophy in the corporate world. From strategic review through to bottom up change, Jenny had enabled savings of millions of pounds, improved customer experience, achieved greater employee engagement and reduced risk.

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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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Prof. David Bamford

Manchester Metropolitan University


Why Process Excellence Transformation Fails in Organisations

75% of change projects fail to achieve the majority of their objectives; 90% of lean six sigma projects fail.  Leading Process Excellence initiatives is a challenging and highly demanding role, one in which senior management commitment is often not enough.  In this session, touching on aspects of strategy, leadership, behaviour and continuous improvement, we use quotations from a host of sources to explore why transformation fails in organisations and attempt to give hope via evidenced based tips and tricks for a way forward.

Professor David Bamford is an experienced industrialist/academic who has published over 100 articles, book chapters and reports as well as presented widely on his topics to both academic and practitioner audiences.  David’s academic activities are under-pinned by a strong industrial and commercial background and knowledge transfer has been at the centre of his drive.

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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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