About Us

The Lean Institute Africa (LIA) was established in 2008 by Emeritus Prof Norman Faull and is a non-profit company (NPC) with the aim of promoting lean management in South Africa and the rest of Africa.

LIA’s mission is:

Building the community of lean practitioners through action research and knowledge sharing, to help organisations serve their customers better.

We aim to deepen our understanding of the effective implementation of lean management through research and practice. LIA’s applied research approach enables it to provide high-quality content in its workshops, experience based facilitation in our educational programmes and high-impact results for the private and public sector organisations with which we partner.

Since 2000, LIA has convened seven national conferences on lean management, drawing on renowned international speakers such as Jim Womack, Dan Jones, John Shook, Mike Rother and Michael Balle.


Norman Faull 20140729 TwitterEmeritus Professor Norman Faull is the Chairman of the Lean Institute Africa and formerly a Professor of Business Administration at the Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town. He was among the first researchers in South Africa to introduce innovative manufacturing and supply chain improvement concepts, such as lean manufacturing, into the country. In recent years he has focussed on implementation of lean management in the South African public health system. He teaches on MBA and executive programmes at UCT and elsewhere. He continues to research the area of process improvement, with particular attention to large-scale systems.

Anton GrütterDr Anton Grütter is the CEO of the Lean Institute Africa. He has helped organisations to implement and institutionalise operational performance improvement programmes in industry, commerce and the public sector justice and healthcare systems for many years. He has taught operations management at South African universities since 1993. He teaches as a visiting professor on the MBA programme at Shanghai University and at the Graduate School of Business at the University of Cape Town. His PhD research was on the effective implementation of shop-floor improvement teams, his textbook “Introduction to Operations Management” was published by Heinemann in 2010 and he has presented at many international conferences.

Samantha Allen is a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and Prince 2 Project Practitioner. She has extensive experience in a variety of industries which include Healthcare, Pathology Services, Oil and Gas and Financial Services. Samantha spent nearly a decade in the UK implementing Lean Methodology and Process Optimization for the National Health Service. Since returning to South Africa she has been working with a wide range of organizations in designing and implementing effective Lean programs to ensure institutionalization of process improvement. Samantha has a passion for training and skills development in Lean Management and is an accredited facilitator, assessor and moderator.