Packaging Is Awesome with Adam Peek
People of Packaging Podcast
208 - Brian Van de Water talks EBITDA, Lean efficiencies, and packaging

208 - Brian Van de Water talks EBITDA, Lean efficiencies, and packaging

Brian Van de Water LinkedIn - email is

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Show summary and notes made by ;)

The Power of Operational Efficiency: A Conversation with Brian Vanderwater

Welcome to the People of Packaging podcast! In this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Brian Vanderwater, the CEO and founder of SPL Consulting LLC. Brian has an extensive background in the packaging industry, with over 30 years of experience in flexible packaging, converting, and label manufacturing. He has also worked in other industries, including robotics and microbiology. Brian's expertise lies in strategic planning, lean enterprise implementation, and leadership development.

The Journey to Operational Efficiency

Brian's journey in the packaging industry began with his first job at James River, where he had the opportunity to work in various roles and gain experience in different printing technologies. He quickly became interested in process improvement and embraced the principles of statistical process control (SPC) and lean manufacturing. Brian's passion for operational efficiency led him to take on several turnaround projects throughout his career, where he successfully transformed struggling companies into profitable enterprises.

The Importance of Leadership and Talent Development

One of the key aspects of Brian's consulting work is leadership and talent development. He believes that effective leadership is crucial for managing change and driving execution within an organization. Brian emphasizes the importance of building cross-functional teams and fostering collaboration between different departments. By bringing together individuals with diverse perspectives and skill sets, companies can achieve significant improvements in their processes and outcomes.

The Kaizen Approach to Process Improvement

Brian's approach to process improvement is rooted in the concept of Kaizen, a Japanese philosophy that focuses on continuous improvement. Kaizen involves identifying and eliminating waste in all aspects of a business, from order processing to manufacturing and shipping. By conducting Kaizen events, Brian helps companies uncover inefficiencies and implement changes that lead to increased capacity, reduced lead times, and improved quality.

Achieving Results through Strategic Planning

In addition to process improvement, Brian also assists companies in developing and executing strategic plans. He believes that a well-defined strategy is essential for driving growth and achieving long-term success. By aligning the organization's goals and objectives, Brian helps companies overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities in the market.

Real-Life Success Stories

Brian's consulting work has yielded impressive results for his clients. In one case, he helped a company increase their throughput by 40% and reduce lead times from 40 days to 14. Another client achieved their ten-year sales growth goal in just four years through a strategic planning and sales process overhaul. These success stories demonstrate the power of operational efficiency and effective leadership in driving business growth and profitability.

The Future of Operational Efficiency

As the business landscape continues to evolve, the need for operational efficiency becomes even more critical. Companies must adapt to changing market conditions and find ways to optimize their processes to stay competitive. Brian's expertise in strategic planning, lean enterprise implementation, and leadership development positions him as a valuable partner for companies seeking to improve their operational performance.

In conclusion, operational efficiency is a key driver of success in the packaging industry. By embracing principles such as lean manufacturing and Kaizen, companies can identify and eliminate waste, improve their processes, and achieve significant cost savings. Effective leadership and talent development are also crucial for managing change and driving execution. Brian Vanderwater's extensive experience and expertise make him a valuable resource for companies looking to enhance their operational performance and achieve sustainable growth

Timestamp Summary [0:00:01] Introduction and background of Brian Vanderwater [0:02:01] Brian's experience in the packaging industry
[0:04:25] Brian's turnaround experience in the microbiology field
[0:07:08] Advice for college students and young leaders
[0:09:49] The importance of EBITDA in measuring business performance
[0:15:55] Brian's consulting process and areas of expertise
[0:19:43] Examples of results achieved through Brian's consulting
[0:21:40] The significance of W. Edwards Deming in the Lean methodology
[0:25:02] The importance of cross-functional collaboration in Kaizen events
[0:30:11] How to connect with Brian Vanderwater for consulting inquiries

Packaging Is Awesome with Adam Peek
People of Packaging Podcast
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