Steelcase Inc., a global office environments manufacturer, announced Wednesday that David Mann, manager of lean management and organizational development for Steelcase, was awarded the Shingo Research and Professional Publication prize. Among 26 submissions, Mann is one of seven Books and Monograph Prize winners.

The Shingo Prize promotes awareness of lean manufacturing concepts, as did the prize's namesake Japanese industrial engineer Shigeo Shingo, who was one of the world's leading experts in improving manufacturing processes. Known as an "engineering genius," Dr. Shingo helped create and write about many aspects of the revolutionary manufacturing practices which comprise the renowned Toyota Production System.

Mann, a Ph.D. organizational psychologist, received the Shingo Research and Professional Publication prize, which recognizes and promotes research and writing regarding new knowledge and understanding of manufacturing consistent with the philosophy of the Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing.

Published by Productivity Press, Mann's book, "Creating a Lean Culture - Tools to Sustain Lean Conversions," identifies a crucial missing link in most conversions to lean production - the parallel implementation of a new, lean management system to support a newly lean production environment. Creating a lean culture addresses this gap. The book provides a practical guide to implementing a series of concrete, behavioral practices and tools for leaders that result in lean management. These practices embody lean's emphasis on process thinking, helping leaders succeed in sustaining their lean transformations. The book provides specific guidance, illustrated by numerous case examples, for developing and using the four key elements of a lean management system: leader standard work, visual controls, a daily accountability process, and discipline, plus others including maintaining process focus, managing key HR issues, and more. In addition, an assessment is included to help gauge current management practices and monitor progress.

"David has worked tirelessly in our operations group, coaching leaders on applying the principles of lean manufacturing," said Nancy Hickey, senior vice president of global strategic resources for Steelcase. "We're fortunate to have him now leading development of our "lean in the office" initiative, which we expect to bring a similar approach to lean process thinking and performance throughout our business processes. We are extremely proud of his work on behalf of Steelcase and congratulate him on this award recognizing an expertise that, through his book, can impact organizations around the world."

The Shingo Prize, established in 1988, recognizes companies in the United States, Canada and Mexico that achieve world-class manufacturing status. According to Shingo Prize philosophy, businesses can achieve world-class performance through focused improvements in core manufacturing and business processes.

Dr. Mann will be officially recognized at the 18th annual Shingo Prize Conference and Awards Ceremony on April 6.