Lean Foundations

This course introduces the history and philosophy of Lean, a methodology that systematically works to eliminate waste from all business activities and is applicable to any role in any industry, from manufacturing and private-sector businesses to public service organizations. It builds a business case for using Lean, focusing on identifying opportunities for Lean, formulating project plans, assembling the right team, and setting project milestones and objectives. 

Topics include:

  • Problem statements
  • Project scope
  • Ishikawa/Fishbone diagram
  • 5 Whys

The course features lectures, conversations about Lean, and perspectives from industry professionals.

Hours: Approximately 2 hours of online education

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify origins and principles of Lean manufacturing
  • Distinguish waste and its different types in an organization
  • Recognize effective problem-solving skills with Lean

Intended Audience

Range of positions at any type of organization, from shop floor employees to executives



Online Education Instructor Bios

Peter Baumgartner, CSSMBB

As UB TCIE’s Operational Excellence Director, Peter is a resident expert in the Lean Six Sigma methodology and tools who has delivered substantial, validated hard and soft savings across a variety of projects in finance, medical devices, insurance, food services, building materials, publishing, and other service-related industries, as well as manufacturing. He has nearly 10 years of experience with a global company in serving as the lead on a multitude of process improvement project teams that have delivered record performance in yields, cost reduction, quality and safety. With an M.S. in statistics, Peter has an advanced understanding and application of statistics, and develops the potential in others through helping them understand Six Sigma and Lean methodologies.

Sabrina Casucci, PhD

Dr. Casucci joined the faculty of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, University at Buffalo in 2016 as a teaching assistant professor, after receiving a PhD from the same department in 2014 and completing a one-year post-doctoral appointment shared between Industrial Engineering and the School of Nursing at the University at Buffalo. Dr. Casucci has expertise in quality systems, Six Sigma and Lean manufacturing methodologies, as well as modeling and evaluation of systems and workflows. Dr. Casucci also has more than 10 years of experience in the medical device and commercial plumbing manufacturing industries, focusing on products and process improvement using Six Sigma and Lean manufacturing principles. Dr. Casucci has also consulted with numerous companies in both the healthcare and manufacturing sectors with projects focused on facility layout, workflow design, and quality improvement initiatives.