Continuous Improvement Project Leader, Operations Management

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Stepan Company
November 16, 2020
Northbrook, IL
Job Type


Key Responsibilities:

  • Responsible for successful implementation of new and improved capabilities in people, processes and tools needed for CI initiatives
  • Lead projects for establishing, sustaining, and improving performance within the various functions, working directly within the manufacturing site and functional work-streams, with emphasis toward end to end operational involvement and improvement
  • Set performance improvement goals in collaboration with other stakeholders, i.e. develop/design visual boards, KPI structure, etc. for assigned work stream(s)
  • Act as an effective change agent and contributes to constructive debate that drives improvement. Proactively communicate opportunities and challenges
  • Provide feedback on observed leadership behaviors during meetings to ensure meeting productivity that drives actions and outcomes
  • Model, encourage and enable in management ‘routines’ (such as Gemba Walks) to ensure continued focus on improvement
  • Deliver and support training and learning to different levels of the organization
  • Assess progress and results of CI implementation initiatives
  • Responsible for performing project management role or collaborating with project manager on CI initiatives
  • Collaborate with project managers and functional leaders to ensure mutual understanding of project plans, milestones, resources and risks
  • Communicate progress in a complete and timely manner. Identify and secure needed resources and expertise from other functions and integrate as needed to CI initiatives
  • Responsible for on-going, personal development of skills and knowledge needed for leadership role
  • Develop knowledge of key CI systems, processes, and tools needed to achieve continuous improvements in the financial and operational objectives of the supply chain and business. For example, Six Sigma, Lean, 5S, change management, analytics and the proficiency to teach and assess utilization of key CI systems, processes and tools
  • Develop increasing proficiency in assigned areas of functional expertise
  • Be seen as a leader, influencer and an advocate for process discipline and commitment to the Company’s standards, particularly for EHS&S, quality, reliability, maintenance, operations, production planning and S&OP and productivity improvements
  • Contribute to an environment where employees and business partners all contribute to improved effectiveness, efficiency and enterprise value
  • Contribute to transparency and collaboration between the CI organization and its partners across the organization
  • Maintain oversight of all assigned CI projects, ensuring that commitments are planned, staffed, executed upon, monitored and reported
  • Contribute to building an on-going pipeline of end to end improvement ideas, opportunities
  • Engage in on-going research and learning to bring insights to trends, best practices and imperatives for continuous improvement
  • Five or more years of experience in manufacturing, continuous improvement and business/industry. Specifically, experience within one or more supply chain functions including production planning, S&OP, transportation, inventory management, operations, EHS, compliance, maintenance and site management. (Planning through Delivery)
  • Experience in roles leading cross-functional teams and/or projects to implement new processes or capabilities within complex contexts including multi-regional and multi-cultural
  • Preferably proven experience or demonstrated capability in leading change initiatives in complex and dynamic environments
  • Certification(s) in Six Sigma, Lean, Project Management, CSCP, CPIM, CLTD, or similar a plus

  • Ability to collaborate on organizational change and build capabilities to optimize operational efficiency and existing investments
  • Ability to communicate content and training materials to foster learning and motivates staff and aligns to the business strategy
  • Ability to instill confidence in the business and demonstrate the business value of Continuous Improvement
  • Excellent analytical, strategic conceptual thinking, strategic planning and execution skills
  • Curiosity and energy to stay connected to technologies and trends and how to deploy them to drive operational excellence in operations and Supply Chain
  • Bachelor's Degree in Business, Planning, Operations, Science or Engineering, or equivalent expertise from experience

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