Creating the Conditions for Lean Coaching: A Human-Centered Approach

Presented By:

Hollie Jensen, Co-Facilitator Renée Smith

Session Description

What does it take to develop a successful Lean coaching relationship? We believe the prerequisite for an effective coaching relationship is a truly human-centered approach that decreases fear and increases safety. This session begins by exploring insights from more than 50 research interviews that demonstrate the high cost when employees are afraid and the immense benefits when they feel trust, respect, and care in the workplace. Next hear real world stories of how that workplace safety translates into effective coaching relationships and results that matter. Engage in reflection and practice to gain insight into how you can apply these concepts as a Lean coach. Walk away from this session feeling challenged and equipped to cultivate a more human workplace and more effective Lean coaching relationships.


Learning Objectives

In this session participants will learn to…

  • Understand the cultural and relational prerequisites for an effective Lean coaching relationship
  • Understand other approaches beside being human-centered and their implications
  • Understand what Lean coaching looks like in the context of safety
  • Have experienced various coaching conditions, and have reflected on and planned for opportunities to enhance your workplace culture and coaching relationships
  • Feel challenged and inspired to cultivate a human-centered workplace based on less fear and more safety

Facilitator Bio:

Hollie Jensen:

As part of her role with the State of Washington, Hollie Jensen developed and leads the Lean Fellowship program and as the Director of Continuous Improvement, coaches state leaders to improve on the governor’s statewide priority goal areas. She joined state government in the spring of 2013 as an enterprise lean consultant after her 17-year tenure with Starbucks, where she started in the field managing stores and continued to the corporate headquarters with roles in human resources, global strategy and operations. Most recently she was a Lean practice strategy manager with a focus on teaching Lean principles and designing the store system of work and the leadership coaching program. Jensen is on faculty with the Lean Enterprise Institute and holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington.  Hollie has been the focus on articles, Lean blogs and podcasts as well as quoted in a number of books sharing her experience.  In her spare time, you will find her enjoying the sunshine in Washington State with her friends and family or on the road exploring shops and boutiques in cities across the country.  She loves to read, play games, shop and spend time with people.  Her energy and passion are demonstrated in her work by growing and deepening understanding others.

Renée Smith

Renée Smith, Director of Organization Development at Washington State’s Department of Enterprise Services (DES), leads teams that provide Lean Transformation Services and Change Management Services to DES and G2G Lean Consulting to state agencies and local governments. Their clients are governments that seek to adapt Lean to operations to deliver better value to customers and make public service a deeply gratifying experience.

Renée believes government can work, and the best hope for governments to deliver on their promises is when Lean is embraced as a human-centered philosophy of work, not just a set of tools used by an improvement expert. This kind of government is based on a principled way of working that highly regards both customers and team members.

In 2017 she founded A Human Workplace to more deeply explore and advocate for these concepts through research, writing at, speaking and teaching, and fostering a community of people around the world who want a more human workplace.

Renée holds a Master of Science in Organization Development from Pepperdine University, and she’s consulted and coached public, private, and not-for-profit organizations on all kinds of challenges. She enjoys running trails at Pt. Defiance in Tacoma, painting for her own amusement, entertaining family and friends, and exploring cities around the world