14 episodes

A podcast devoted to sharing knowledge of how companies can become high-performance organizations. Hosted by Joseph Paris.

State Of Readiness Joseph F Paris Jr

    • Entrepreneurship

A podcast devoted to sharing knowledge of how companies can become high-performance organizations. Hosted by Joseph Paris.

    Joe Vacca; Vice President of Operational Excellence at Cigna

    Joe Vacca; Vice President of Operational Excellence at Cigna

    For 20+ years Joe has been empowering organizations, teams, and individuals to continuously improve processes and outcomes toward their goals and ultimately achieve Excellence in their chosen business, function, or discipline.  What makes Joe unique is that he has led successful transformation programs across several Fortune 100 companies – and he has experienced the deployment and sustainment phases both as a senior leader of large organizations, as well as an Operational Excellence practitioner.
    We explore Joe’s dual Bachelor’ Degrees in Economics and Psychology from St. Lawrence University and how those two disciplines interplayed during his career; where they intersected and where they diverged.  Joe found that hard facts drive decisions, but those decisions are made by people who are greatly influenced by the emotions they feel. 
    Joe shares many of his experiences throughout his career.  One subject in which we take a deep dive is comparing and contrasting collegiate engagement that is face-to-face versus that which is largely remote.  Joe relates how he was involved in a lean transformation and the daily huddles were invaluable for level-setting the team, sharing experiences, and creating alignment for what had to be done – but the actual work was performed semi-autonomously.  The huddles helped to build a level of trust so that when people did work remotely, they had confidence in their teammates because they knew them.  His take-away from the experience was that remote working will work, but it will work better if the team increases their understanding of one another and the trust that comes with it.
    Joe shares many more experiences and insights and I am sure you will enjoy the opportunity to learn from him.
    Host: Joseph Paris, Founder of the;  XONITEK Group of Companies,  Operational Excellence Society & Readiness Institute

    Guest: Joe Vacca

    Joe Vacca

    About Joe Vacca
    Joe has 25 years of leadership experience in Operations and Finance with an emphasis on Continuous Improvement and Enterprise efficiency.  He has worked across Insurance, Financial Services, and Health Care industries at companies including General Electric, MassMutual, Aetna and CIGNA.  He has also invested considerable time assisting community-based organizations with achieving their goals.
    Joe has been a practicing Six Sigma Black Belt since 2004, with ASQ certifications for Black Belt (CSSBB) and Lean (LSC).  He has a bachelor’s degree in Economics & Psychology from St. Lawrence University (summa c*m laude) and an MBA from Rensselaer’s Lally School of Management.  He is also a graduate of GE’s renowned Financial Management Program and CIGNA’s Financial Development Program, which he then directed upon graduation.
    Joe lives in Connecticut with his wife and two daughters and enjoys outdoor sports and wellness activities such as hiking, running and biking in his free time.

    About Cigna

    Website: https://www.cigna.com/

    Headquarters: Bloomfield, CT

    Year founded: INA was founded in 1792; CG was founded in 1912; merged to CIGNA in 1982

    Company type: Publicly traded (Symbol CI NYSE)

    Company size: ~$150 Billion in annual revenue; 74,000 employees

    Specialties: Cigna's mission is to improve the health, well-being, and peace of mind of those we serve by making health care simple, affordable, and predictable.

    • 1 hr 8 min
    Dr. Cynthia J. Young; Theater Mission Planning Center Curriculum Developer and Instructor at Leidos

    Dr. Cynthia J. Young; Theater Mission Planning Center Curriculum Developer and Instructor at Leidos

    Cindy is as self-made a person as anyone I have ever met.  After graduating high school and not having any particular skills that were as yet discovered nor the grades or money to get into University, she joined the United States Navy as an enlisted person.  Perhaps she knew, and it’s just as likely she did not, that this single decision to join the Navy set her on a professional trajectory that is nothing short of amazing.
    Once in the Navy, her MOS was that of a cryptologic technician maintenance servicing communication equipment.  As her initial planned time in the Navy was nearing the end, instead of leaving, she decided to remain and earn her Bachelor’s Degree (soon-after becoming an officer) and then her Master’s Degrees – eventually retiring from the Navy.  She earned her Doctorate degree after leaving the Navy when she was 46.  Her doctoral study, Knowledge Management and Innovation on Firm Performance of United States Ship Repair, provided her the opportunity to gain additional professional and academic expertise to facilitate improvements in organizational knowledge management.
    She had a daughter while stationed in Georgia which added yet another level of complexity; working hard to balance her professional career in the Navy with her studies and the new responsibilities of being a mother.  Her driving force – wanting to never fail at any of it and making sure her daughter was provided for and brought-up in a stable environment. 
    If all this was not enough, Cindy has found time to become a certified Project Management Professional, a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, and as an ASQ-Certified Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence – and has been a contributing author to several books including; Chapter 3: Using Leadership to Improve Firm Performance Through Knowledge Management from The Refractive Thinker: Volume XI: Women in Leadership and Chapter 4: Ensuring Prosperous Knowledge Flow from the Silent Generation Through Generation Z in a Global Workforce from The Refractive Thinker: Volume XVII: Managing a Cultural Workforce: The Impact of Global Employees.
    I am sure you will find Cindy’s life journey as fascinating and inspirational as I did.
    Host: Joseph Paris, Founder of the;  XONITEK Group of Companies,  Operational Excellence Society & Readiness Institute

    Guest: Dr. Cynthia Young

    Dr. Cynthia Young

    About Dr. Cynthia J. Young
    Cindy resides in Chesapeake, Virginia.   She holds several accredited degrees; a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in English Language and Literature from the University of Maryland, College Park; two Masters of Business Administration (MBA), one in e-commerce and one in advanced management studies, from Trident University International; and a Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) from Walden University.
    She is a retired Surface Warfare Officer with 23 years in the U.S. Navy having entered the Navy directly out of high school.  At Leidos, Cindy is a Theater Mission Planning Center Curriculum Developer and Instructor, a defense contracting company.   She is a past-Chair of American Society for Quality, Tidewater, Section 1128, and a member of the Project Management Institute, Golden Key International Honor Society, and Delta Mu Delta International Business Honor Society. 
    Outside of her professional career, she raises money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society with Team in Training (TNT).  She has run (to date) two marathons (Marine Corps Marathon and the Chicago Marathon) and two half-marathons (Norfolk Harbor Half Marathon and the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon).

    About Leidos

    Website: https://www.leidos.com/

    Headquarters: Reston, VA

    Year founded: Leidos (from Kaleidoscope) was originally part of SAIC, which was founded in 1969, but split from SAIC in Sept 2013.

    Company type: Global

    • 41 min
    Caroline Bondier – Director, Process Development and Program Management at KONE Corporation

    Caroline Bondier – Director, Process Development and Program Management at KONE Corporation

    With fifteen years of international work experience, Caroline Bondier joined with KONE Corporation in 2011 as a CRM Business Analyst and has moved up the ranks of leadership to her present position as the Director, Process Development and Program Management for KONE’s Modernization Business Line.  After some struggle to find work, Caroline started her career in document coordination at NOKIA as a subcontractor before moving on to the sales and marketing development for Finnish based Citec group.  She moved on to KONE in 2011, starting in IT and process development with a focus on CRM.  Caroline moved to the business operations side of KONE in 2014 driving business transformation in the tendering and ordering processes and in 2017 took on the newly create role of process development and program management for modernization business line.
    Caroline describes herself as an “excellence ideologist”.  She does not adhere to any one way or doctrine for achieving excellence, but rather looks at the opportunities to become better holistically.  We talk about the “KONE Way”; what it is and how it supports the pursuit of the company strategy.  The KONE WAY is actually a reference in the Nordics.  Maybe not as well-known as the “Toyota Way”, but the way we operate.  The point here is not to talk about KONE products, but to explain the importance of our operating model (which is fairly advanced according to benchmarks), how it supports achieving our results, how big the challenges have been, and what’s her role is in it.  And we talk about her general philosophies, experiences, and approaches she has had over her career.
    Host: Joseph Paris, Founder of the;  XONITEK Group of Companies,  Operational Excellence Society & Readiness Institute

    Guest: Caroline Bondier

    Caroline Bondier

    About Caroline Bondier
    Caroline was born in France and moved to Finland when 20 years old where she fell in love with the country.  She earned her undergraduate business degrees at the Université Montesquieu Bordeaux 4 and the HAMK Häme University of Applied Sciences.  She went on to earn her MBA at the Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences.  
    Caroline’s passion is to support organizations into achieving their vision for growth through operational excellence.  Her focus is on how improvement and performance happens and how teams succeed.  With her strong leadership skills and change managements capabilities, she has been able to systematically drive teams, solutions, and programs towards success.  Caroline loves to travel and volunteers at the Red Cross as fundraising manager.

    About KONE Corporation
    Website; https://www.kone.com/en/
    Headquarters; Espoo, Finland
    Year Founded; 1910
    Company Type; International engineering and service company
    Company Size; $10.7B (2019-est) with 55,000 employees across 60 countries worldwide
    Specialties; Designs, engineers, manufactures, installs, and services; autowalks, automatic doors and gates, escalators, and elevators.

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Dale Bayley - Lean Director of the Filtration Group at Parker Hannifin

    Dale Bayley - Lean Director of the Filtration Group at Parker Hannifin

    I welcome Dale Bayley, the Lean Director of the Filtration Group of Parker Hannifin to this edition of State of Readiness.  Parker Hannifin is a an publicly-traded American corporation (NYSE: PH) founded in 1917, revenues of $14.3B(2018), 58,000 employees globally,  and specializing in motion and control technologies which Dale joined in 1978.
    Dale grew-up in a blue-collar, hard-working family.  And when Dale joined Parker, as an production assembler, he did not have a college degree.  It wasn’t until 2008 with the support of Parker Hannifin that Dale earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from the University of Phoenix.  During the time of his earning his degree and working full-time, Dale also selected this moment to earn his Lean Six-Sigma Black Belt from ASQ – he had a full plate.
    Working as a maintenance mechanic in 1993, Parker Hannifin was launching a Best Practices program when he was asked to be core team member in the beginning of the initiative.  Instead of going back to maintenance, Dale joined the Best Practices team full-time – a moment in his career with Parker Hannifin when the choice was made for him but not by him.  The Best Practices program evolved into a Lean program and Dale incrementally gained greater and greater responsibilities – eventually becoming the Lean Director of the Filtration Group.  He shares his thoughts Leadership and what he has learned over the years.  And he shares his thoughts on Lean and how you can cut too much, or not in the right place saying; “If your objective is to lose weight, you can lose 20lbs immediately by cutting off your leg.  But that’s not clarity of the objective.  The objective is to be healthier and that’s why you want to lose weight.”  Eliminate the waste, but remain toned.
    Listen-in on Dale and his sharing his fascinating journey.  He came from modest beginnings and grew to a position of leadership in one of the most respected  companies in the world.  And although he has grown in rank and title, he has remained true to his roots and a humble servant-leader.
    Host: Joseph Paris, Founder of the;  XONITEK Group of Companies,  Operational Excellence Society & Readiness Institute

    Guest: Dale Bayley

    Dale Bayley

    About Dale Bayley
    Dale Bayley is the Lean Director of the Filtration Group of Parker Hannifin.  He is also the founder of Aspire Coaching and Consulting.  Dale started with Parker Hannifin as an production assembler 41 years ago in 1978.  With Parker he held various leadership roles and found his niche as a champion of continuous improvement initiatives since 1993. Dale earned his Six Sigma Black Belt Certification with ASQ in 2007.  He has also accomplished multiple model plant certifications globally (California, Brazil, South Korea, the UK, and Thailand) including winning the AME award for Operational Excellence in 2010.  As Lean Director Dale leads a Leadership Development Program, runs monthly Global Operational reviews for 45 operations, and conducts rapid improvement Kaizen events at targeted sites.  Dale also joined the John Maxwell Team as an independent certified coach, trainer, and speaker and setup Aspire Coaching and Consulting.  He is ambitious at the service of others and clarified his personal mission as helping others to live abundantly and continuously improve.
    About Parker Hannifin Corporation
    Website; https://www.parker.com/
    Headquarters; Mayfield Heights, OH
    Year founded; 1917
    Company type; American publicly-traded corporation (NYSE: PH) specializing in motion and control technologies
    Company size; Revenue of $14.3B (2018) with about 58,000 employees globally
    Specialties; Company specializes in Filtration, sealing, hose and fittings, hydraulics, pneumatics, valves and controls

    • 36 min
    Céline Felan – Vice President of Business Transformation at Community Brands

    Céline Felan – Vice President of Business Transformation at Community Brands

    In this edition of “State of Readiness”, I interview Céline Felan, Vice President of Business Transformation at Community Brands, a software company that provides a suite of offerings for membership-based organizations, private schools and churches.
    Being born in Paris, France and raised in the Netherlands, Céline now calls Austin, Texas home – where she quickly learned and understood the phrase “grabbing the bull by the horns”.  In her role, she has help guide the company through 28 acquisitions over the past two (2) years.  Yes, you read that right (I even asked her to repeat that during the podcast because it seemed like quite a bit – and it is).  As such, Céline’s days are non-standard and she never really knows for certain how each day (or each acquisition) will play out.  This proved to be a considerable challenge for Céline, who is a self-professed “Type-A Perfectionist”.  She had to learn and understand that “80 is the new 100”.   Over time, Community Brands has created an “acquisition checklist”, but it is imperfect so it’s more of a guideline than a checklist.
    Most of the acquisitions are of small(ish) companies.  As such, the corporate culture is that of their founders.  Community brands strives to maintain the individualism of the company from a cultural perspective – keeping in mind to preserve what might keep the employees happy such as having taco-Tuesdays or allowing pets to come to the office, but making sure that the companies learn the “team colors” and fight under the corporate flag.  The acquired companies are also expected to remain where they are geographically with consolidations being mostly in the General and Administrative functions where services can be shared.
    Host: Joseph Paris, Founder of the;  XONITEK Group of Companies,  Operational Excellence Society & Readiness Institute
    Guest: Céline Felan
    About Céline Felan Dedicated to expanding business capabilities, fostering innovation, driving operational efficiencies and adding value to clients, the organization and investors. Known for optimizing productivity, revenue, service levels, and employee performance through comprehensive organizational development strategies. Inspiring communicator and change agent motivating employees to go beyond set job descriptions. Energized, enthusiastic, and tenacious with exceptional mentoring skills and global business experience.
    I enjoy every opportunity to define and drive strategy to meet our company objectives as one organization. I approach a business objective from multiple perspectives, understanding all aspects and dependencies, working across teams to define a strategy. This all-encompassing approach unifies the different departments around a common goal and path forward, driving close collaboration and accountability. Once accomplished, I work side-by-side with the teams to assure successful adoption and ownership of the new business processes; allowing the team to be self-sustaining and driving a culture of continuous improvement.
    About Community Brands
    Website; www.communitybrands.com
    Headquarters; St. Petersburg Florida
    Year founded; 2017
    Company type; Software
    Company size; 3000 employees
    Specialties; Software suite provider for Membership based organizations, Private Schools and Churches.

    • 39 min
    Tyrone Muse - CEO and President; Visions Federal Credit Union

    Tyrone Muse - CEO and President; Visions Federal Credit Union

    I welcome Tyrone “Ty” Muse to this episode of State of Readiness.  Ty is the CEO and President of Visions Federal Credit Union, a not-for-profit financial institution with $4.2 in assets and he will share the journey of his career from working with Jack Welch at GE Asset Management, to PriceWaterhouseCoopers, and Goldman Sachs.  But in particular, Ty will share the challenges he faced when he joined Visions; changing it from what it was, to what it is, towards what it will be.
    In my interviews, I try to remain unbiased – and I think I do a pretty good job in this episode also.  But I have to disclose that I do have a bias.  Of all of the business leaders I have met over the years and those I have interviewed, Ty stands out as one of my most favourites.  Certainly he has drive and he has vision (pun intended) as all good leaders must.  But his real passion, core values, and “true North” is helping people and it’s unmistakable.  He is the quintessential “humble servant leader”.  I have had several sit-downs with Ty over the last year or so and the conversation is always easy, inspiring, insightful – and real.  The conversations have never ended because they lose steam, but because of some other prior commitment that brings it to a premature end.  I hope you enjoy this conversation as much as I did.  To get a sense of the real Ty and what he is all about, be sure to see the link to the video at the bottom of his biography.
    Host: Joseph Paris, Founder of the;  XONITEK Group of Companies,  Operational Excellence Society & Readiness Institute
    Guest: Tyrone Muse
    About Tyrone Muse
    Ty is President/CEO of Visions Federal Credit Union, a $4 2 billion financial institution headquartered in Endwell, NY serving 200,000 members primarily in three states (New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania).Prior to joining Visions Federal Credit Union on May 1, 2013, Ty was the CFO of Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union, based in Poughkeepsie, NY.  Though Ty’s roots are southern, he was raised in Wallkill, NY.  He attended Northeastern University in Boston, MA on a track scholarship where he attained his undergraduate degree, Masters in Accounting, and his MBA.  Ty has over 25 years in the financial services industry working at institutions such as PricewaterhouseCoopers, Goldman Sachs (Controller at Archon Group – Real Estate Division), and GE Asset Management.  He is also a Certified Public Accountant.Ty has received numerous awards for his efforts in supporting the community and promoting giving for numerous causes.  At age 48, he still says his greatest accomplishment is marrying his wife and raising his two daughters.  Ty now lives in Vestal, NY, and in his leisure time, he enjoys attending Binghamton University basketball games, playing basketball at the Jewish Community Center, and watching his children compete in their sporting events.  In their spare time, the Muse family sponsored and coached a free track club of over 100 children from ages 7 to 17 through a partnership with Triple Cities Running Club. Ty also serves on numerous community boards and advisory councils across the country.All around, Ty leads by using positivity and encouragement.  Winning is contagious and fun and can be seen in his overall approach to life and management.  He asks that everyone find “one thing” they are passionate about to make their lives, family, job or community better.  With this approach, he believes it will lead to thousands of “one things” to make our community better.  To get a better sense of Visions Federal Credit Union and Ty’s brand, watch the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXaNPGGrvtI About Visions Federal Credit Union
    Website; https://visionsfcu.org
    Headquarters; Endwell, NY
    Year founded; 1966
    Company type; Banking, Not-for-Profit
    Company size; $4.2 Billion

    • 1 hr 14 min

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