Top 15 Lean Conferences of 2020


There is no shortage of lean-related events in 2020, from small regional conferences, to workshops, to large international events that draw the world’s top thought leaders. This list captures what we believe to be the best events, run by the best organizations, for those seeking to learn and network in 2020. Each event is unique and, in most cases, targeted specifically to those in different positions of an organization (lean champions, executive leadership, human resources, accounting, etc.) and those with differing levels of lean experience. Best wishes in your learning goals throughout 2020! Are we missing one? We’d love to hear about it.

  Denotes a few of our favorites! 

TWI Summit

Lean Frontiers, Inc.
February 17-18, 2020
Austin, TX

From the website: The TWI Summit highlights companies who have successfully addressed the challenges of standard work, an enterprise-wide kaizen culture, and respect for people through TWI’s (Training Within Industry) Job Instruction, Job Methods, and Job Relations programs. Learn how these programs impacted the development of the Toyota Production System and how companies today have achieved similar success.

What is TWI? Video & Primer Website

Toyota Kata Summit

Lean Frontiers, Inc.
February 20-21, 2020
Austin, TX

From the website: The Kata Summit (aka KataCon) is an annual gathering of Toyota Kata practitioners who gather to share what they’re learning. There is an unique mix of short keynotes, hands-on breakout sessions, intensive deep dives, and mini-updates from a variety of practitioners, industries, and applications. Learn from your peers as together we explore developing a workforce of scientific thinkers at KataCon!

ASQ Lean and Six Sigma Conference

American Society for Quality
Feb 23-25, 2020
Phoenix, AZ

From the website: Do you have technical proficiencies and leadership responsibilities within your organization? Are you actively involved in process improvement, organizational change, and development dynamics related to a successful lean and Six Sigma culture? This conference is for you!

2020 Lean Summit

Lean Enterprise Institute
April 6-7, 2020
Carlsbad, CA

From the website: The Lean Summit, formerly known as the Lean Transformation Summit, has become the event for lean thinkers and innovators to get together, learn, and share. Countless partnerships have formed, professional relationships started, and lean initiatives have been energized.

COE Summit 2020

Ohio State’s Center for Operational Excellence
April 7-9, 2020
Columbus, OH

From the website: The pace of change is moving faster than ever, and organizations are becoming defined by their ability to adapt and anticipate disruption. Growing as an innovative, adaptive organization means supporting a culture of continuous learning – and each year, The Ohio State University Center for Operational Excellence offers an opportunity to get your cross-functional teams offsite and in front of the latest best practices in leadership and problem solving. Join us, and 500 process excellence leaders from across North America, for Leading Through Excellence 2019.

Shingo Conference

Shingo Institute
April 16-17, 2020
Orlando, FL

From the website: A big part of shaping a culture that drives operational excellence is engaging the entire organization in improvement efforts. This year’s theme of “Make Work Meaningful” is about finding ways to create that culture. Join us to learn from leaders how to make big transformations in your organization using the principles of the Shingo Model™.

Indiana Lean Healthcare Summit

Lean Frontiers, Inc.
April 29-30, 2020
Noblesville, IN

From the website: Healthcare in Indiana is experiencing a transformation to address the many challenges facing providers, and patients. There are a growing number of healthcare organizations who facing these challenges through the application of “Lean Thinking” to minimize waste in every process, procedure, and task. The most successful organizations are driving these changes down to the front lines, where the work takes place, with a focus on providing value for the customer (patient). Join the inaugural event as Indiana-based healthcare organizations gather to meet, learn, and benchmark with a common goal of creating a the world’s most excellent examples of healthcare innovation.

Lean Healthcare Transformation Summit

June 3-4, 2020
Salt Lake City, UT

From the website: Join healthcare leaders from North America and across the globe to learn, share, and connect at the 11th annual Lean Healthcare Transformation Summit. This premier event offers the latest insights for healthcare leaders on how to create sustainable organizational change.

TWI & Kata Summit Europe

Lean Frontiers, Inc. & BTP
June 4-5, 2020
Barcelona, Spain

From the website: The 2020 TWI & Kata Summit Europe will be the most engaging Summit yet (past photos here) with a unique focus on “Leaders Leading Leaders” as we explore the building-block skills of TWI & Kata. Lean and improvement practitioners will find even more on practical learning, more practice, and extra networking. So, join your peers from across Europe (and the globe) in beautiful Barcelona for the proven behavior and people patterns found in TWI and Kata, and the powerful connection of the two.

Lean Coaching Summit

Lean Frontiers, Inc. & Lean Enterprise Institute
July 30-31, 2020
Orlando, FL (Walt Disney World Area)

From the website: The Lean Enterprise Institute and Lean Frontiers again offer to the lean community the annual Lean Coaching Summit. The Summit will continue to lay the groundwork for coaching in the lean enterprise through a collaborative and hands-on learning environment. The Summit’s mission is to move the lean enterprise from a vision of coaching excellence to reality, resulting in everyone in your organization being touched by persistent and patient coaching.

Lean Accounting & Management Summit

Lean Frontiers, Inc.
September 17-18, 2020
Orlando, FL (Walt Disney World Area)

From the website: This Summit bridges the gap between accounting and lean business management by bringing together the people and topics that address common roadblocks in most organizations. The Summit is designed for accounting and operations professionals, lean champions, and management across the enterprise who seek to break “silo thinking” on a way to a truly integrated lean management system. Meet the world’s leading lean management pioneers like Mark Deluzio, Jean Cunningham, Orry Fiume, Jerry Solomon, Bill Waddell, and many more recognizable thought leaders.

What is Lean Accounting? Video

Lean HR & People Development Summit

Lean Frontiers, Inc.
September 17-18, 2020
Orlando, FL (Walt Disney World Area)

From the website: At its heart, lean is a “people system,” and who better to address the needs of a lean organization than Human Resources? The Lean HR & People Development Summit is the ideal place for HR, lean practitioners, and organizational leadership to address the “people issues” of an organization on the way to a lasting lean culture. With lean HR thought leaders and company practitioners, you’ll understand and define key improvement skills and behaviors, identify the existing gaps in your organization, and develop strategies for deploying these skills and behaviors from front-line staff to executive leadership.

What is Lean HR? Video

Lean Product & Process Development Exchange North America

Lean Product & Process Development Exchange North America
October 5-8, 2020
Newport, RI

From the website: Our mission is to bring the insights on lean process and product development together for you to learn and exchange. Our LPPDE conferences are a good mixture of presentations and workshops from practitioners, R&D managers, R&D improvement leaders and academia. The topics range from people aspects such as change management to methods and tools. Join product development professionals from across North America for this annual event.

What is Lean Product Development? Video

Northeast Lean Conference

October 7-8, 2020
Springfield, MA

From the website: The Northeast Lean Conference was created by the non-profit GBMP to provide information and inspiration to Lean practitioners – from those just starting out to seasoned Lean leaders from the manufacturing, healthcare, service and other vital industry sectors. ​The practical learning format features exceptional keynote and breakout presentations, interdepartmental panels, peer-to-peer discussions, hands-on simulations, interactive learning and sharing, and unlimited networking opportunities. Meet more than 500 passionate Lean, Six Sigma and Continuous Improvement professionals just like you.

AME International Conference

Association for Manufacturing Excellence
October 26-30, 2020
Toronto, Canada

From the website: The AME 2019 International Conference in Chicago is the largest lean conference in the world. With outstanding keynote speakers, daily practitioner presentations, must-see benchmarking tours, and pre-conference workshops, the learning experience is like no other. World-class, highly successful continuous improvement practitioners provide a source of knowledge that you can rely on to confidently make the changes needed to accelerate growth.

Indiana Lean Healthcare Summit
April 29-30, 2020
Noblesville, IN

TWI & Kata Summit Europe
June 4-5, 2020
Barcelona, Spain

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What is Lean Accounting?

What is Lean HR?

What is Lean Product Development?

What is Lean Sales & Marketing?

What is Lean IT?

What is Lean Supply Chain?

What is TWI?


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