The Lean Machine – Creating Innovation Flow Through Lean Product Development

Innovation Roundtable

September 1, 2009: 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

In 2003, Harley-Davidson was awarded the Outstanding Corporate Innovator award by the Product Development Management Association (PDMA,) yet a short time later the product development system was able to introduce over four times as much innovation. Through years of investment in production facilities, the backlog of motorcycle demand was shrinking. In order to generate demand, Harley-Davidson applied lean methods to product development to improve output of innovation.


Gleacher Center
Room 100
450 North Cityfront Plaza Drive
Chicago, Illinois

Event Details

Dantar will share lessons from his learning journey as he tells his story of applying lean principles in a corporate environment that did not want to change. He will explore the complexities, challenges, and pitfalls associated with creating organizational change to improve the innovation process. He will also discuss key principles of "Knowledge-based product development" and how you can utilize it to improve revenue-growth and profitability. Dantar Oosterwal has a passion for innovation and an enthusiasm for the improvement of business systems. At the intersection of these two interests, Dantar is a leader in the application of lean methods in new product development creating dramatic improvements in effectiveness and efficiency. As the Director of Product Development for Harley-Davidson Motor Company, lean efforts resulted in 50% reduction in time to market and a four-fold increase in throughput while maintaining a quality level of 98% repurchase intent. Later as the Vice President of Innovation for Sara Lee, Dantar once again applied these principles in leading the creation and implementation of Sara Lee’s global Innovation process resulting in 35% improvement in R&D efficiency and a five-fold increase in revenue from new products. He has written a book describing his experiences at Harley-Davidson titled The Lean Machine. You can learn more at


No Charge


Register Online

Deadline: 9/1/2009


6:00 PM-6:30 PM: Registration

6:30 PM-7:45 PM: Presentation and Q&A

7:45 PM-9:00 PM: Midway Club

Speaker Profiles

Dantar Oosterwal (Speaker)

Dantar holds a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Michigan and a Masters degree in Management from the Sloan School of Management at MIT.


Mary Drotar 


Other Information

Discounted Parking Chicago Booth Alumni Office has arranged with the AMC Theater-River East Self parking Garage to provide discounted parking: 300 East Illinois Street (AMC Theater-River East Self Park Garage) $6.00 after 3:00pm Garage: Self Park Facility Payment: Automated; at pay-stations by cash or credit card or upon exit pay by credit card only. To receive discounted rate: There is a card validator at the first floor security desk of the Gleacher Center. The new system for the AMC Theater- River East Self Park Garage is automated. You will only need to insert your parking card in the validator and the new price will be automatically applied. You can validate your parking ticket at any time between your arrival at and departure from the Gleacher Center. When you leave the lot you will be charged for the lower $6.00 fee.