Virtual Event | April 19-22, 2021 | 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Daily

$99* PRINTING United Alliance Members | Non-members

* $149 without discount code. Contact membercentral [at] for code.

Register now!

Event Overview

Every company should be looking for practical ways to reduce operational costs, speed throughput, and boost customer experience and satisfaction. PRINTING United Alliance's CI Ready! virtual conference event features four sessions presented over four days that focus on foundational principles and tools for implementing a continuous improvement program.

CI Ready! is ideal for executives and managers who are exploring the value of a continuous improvement (CI) program, in the early stages of implementing one, or need a convenient way to educate employees in the principles and tools. Get ideas and real-life examples that you can use to cut costs, reduce waste, improve performance, and inspire change--get CI Ready! and register today!

You Will Learn...

  • How CI thinking transforms printing companies and drives greater profits
  • The principles of CI and Lean production
  • Why starting with 5S is a smart approach and how to do it
  • How to get and implement more improvement ideas from employees
  • An easy-to-use process for better decision making
  • How to build momentum for a CI effort

Who Should Attend

  • Owners and top leaders
  • Plant managers
  • Operations and manufacturing managers
  • Quality managers
  • Continuous improvement champions and facilitators


CI Ready! will be presented in four one-hour sessions over four days via an easy-to-use virtual meeting platform. Attendees can participate from the comfort of their office, watching presentation content on their computer or tablet and listening via their phone or computer speakers. This is an interactive event--attendees can ask questions and receive answers throughout. Specific login instructions will be provided upon registration.

Speakers & Schedule


Monday, April 19, 2021

2:00-3:00 p.m. EDT

The Bedrock Principles and Tools of Continuous Improvement

John Compton, Principal, Compton & Associates

To pursue operational excellence, companies must have a foundational knowledge of continuous improvement (CI) and Lean thinking. Only then will they be able to improve key processes in a way that continually meets customer needs with the least amount of resources. Compton will explain the concepts and methods that underly CI, including the identification and reduction of the eight wastes, process quality and value streams, the value of flow, the role of standardized work, visual controls, and process improvement, among others. The important role that demonstrating respect for people plays in accelerating a company's rate of improvement will also be discussed.


Tuesday, April 20, 2021

2:00-3:00 p.m. EDT

Implementing 5S and Creating a Visual Workspace: A Case Study

Dan Rudnicki, Continuous Improvement Manager, Royal Containers

5S is the starting point of many continuous improvement programs. What is so important about 5S that it drives Lean manufacturing cultures? Find out key benefits and how to lead your company to implement 5S (sort, straighten, shine, standardize, and sustain). You'll discover how 5S impacts efficiency, quality, teambuilding, and morale and that there is far more to it than putting yellow lines on the floor. This case study from a corrugated box maker will review the steps associated with the 5S elements, share real-life experiences, and reveal what it means to have a visual workspace. If you want to foster a Lean mindset, 5S is the baseline tool you must employ.


Wednesday, April 21, 2021

2:00-3:00 p.m. EDT

Capturing Workforce Knowledge and Creativity

Dr. Alan G. Robinson, award-winning author and authority on corporate innovation and improvement

Employee-originated ideas play a vital role in capturing a more rapid rate of improvement. Learn global cutting-edge practices in managing ideas. The best organizations in the world now routinely get 50 or more ideas per person per year, with implementation rates typically 90 percent or higher. Not surprisingly, they perform at extraordinary levels. Robinson will provide a framework and roadmap for integrating ideas and idea management into the way your company is structured and managed.


Thursday, April 22, 2021

2:00-3:00 p.m. EDT

Making Better Decisions: Avoiding the Conclusion Trap and Other Pitfalls

Dan Markovitz, Founder and President, Markovitz Consulting

Why do organizations and individuals so often struggle to make good decisions, investing enormous amounts of time and money in fruitless efforts to solve thorny problems? Too often the mistake lies in jumping to conclusions before understanding the problem. Sound problem solving underpins any successful continuous improvement program, and Markovitz distills key insights from Lean management and the psychology of making decisions into an easy four-step process. Stop jumping to conclusions and ensure that you deeply understand a problem before attempting to fix it.


Access Anytime*

Introduction to Lean Manufacturing (online course)

John Compton, Principal and Founder, Compton & Associates

Lean methods can be learned. The core idea of Lean is to maximize customer value and increase "flow," while minimizing the eight types of waste. A Lean organization understands customer value and focuses their key processes to continually meet those needs. This 60-minute program will provide an overview of why Lean has become a popular continuous improvement strategy, its philosophy, and some Lean tools most commonly used in print manufacturing.

*This course will be included in the CI Ready! resource center along with the recorded presentations from the event.

Reserve my spot for CI Ready!


About the Speakers 

John Compton, Principal, Compton & Associates

Compton is owner and principal of Compton & Associates, a consulting company dedicated to improving the people, processes, and profits of its clients. He is professor emeritus of the Rochester Institute of Technology, where he taught quality systems and process improvement while serving as director of the Center for Quality and Productivity in the Graphic Arts. More recently, he served as vice president of quality and training at Vertis Communications and prior to that as vice president of quality and organizational development at Fort Dearborn Company. Compton has authored and co-authored several books dealing with quality and productivity in the printing and imaging industry. A Master Lean/Six Sigma Black Belt, he has served as consultant to the Continuous Improvement Conference since 2010.

Dr. Alan G. Robinson, award-winning author and authority on corporate innovation and improvement

Dr. Alan G. Robinson specializes in Lean, managing continuous improvement, creativity, ideas and innovation, and is the co-author of ten books--the latest being The Idea-Driven Organization--which have been translated into twenty-five languages. He has advised more than 300 organizations around the globe on how to improve their performance. He is currently a professor at the Isenberg School of Management at the University of Massachusetts and has served on the Board of Examiners for both the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award and the Shingo Prize for operational excellence.

Dan Markovitz, founder and president, Markovitz Consulting

Dan Markovitz makes organizations more profitable by improving operations and execution. He has worked with clients throughout the U.S. and Europe. Past clients have included Microsoft, WL Gore, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, CamelBak, Clif Bar, Goodyear Tire, and dozens of smaller companies. He is a faculty member at the Lean Enterprise Institute and teaches at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and The Ohio State University's Fisher School of Business. Markovitz is a dynamic speaker who has keynoted at conferences around the world and spoken at numerous Fortune 500 companies. His two earlier books--A Factory of One and Building the Fit Organization--were both honored with Shingo Research Awards. His new book, The Conclusion Trap, about better problem solving, just came out in May.

Dan Rudnicki, Continuous Improvement Manager, Royal Containers

Dan Rudnicki is a Lean/CI specialist for Royal Containers, a large independent corrugated printer and converter in Ontario, Canada. He has over 30 years of experience in the manufacture of corrugated packaging. Recently he has led a Lean transformation at Royal's Brampton (ON) plant and is now using the same approach to transform a second Royal facility. His personal style, knowledge of Lean manufacturing, and manufacturing experience have enabled his success in leading teams that have implemented 5S and improved major processes. In 2019 he was a contributor to a Lean masterclass in Canada, discussing how Royal used portable tubular structures as part of its 5S program.

Following the event, all recordings from CI Ready! will be posted in a resource center where you can access and view the presentations and other resources at your convenience.