How Customer-Driven Lean Innovation Succeeded Inside a 160+ Year Old Company

When:  Oct 18, 2022 from 18:00 to 19:30 (ET)
Associated with  Pittsburgh

How Customer-Driven Lean Innovation Succeeded Inside a 160+ Year Old Company

Click here to register.

Event Description

Can large, established companies innovate faster, using the mindset and techniques of a startup?

During this case study talk, you'll learn how A.Y. McDonald Mfg. Co., a leading manufacturer of fittings for public water systems (a highly commoditized and very slowly changing industry), used new “lean innovation” methods to develop a wave of new products and other innovations in record time. See how the company broadened its definition of “product” and navigated cultural resistance to change internally and in the marketplace. This valuable information will be presented by Kelly Breitbach, Innovation Product Manager at A.Y. McDonald Mfg. Co. and Matt Phillips, President of Innovation Consultancy Phillips & Co.

Learning Objectives

  1. Understand the lessons learned from using lean innovation at A.Y. McDonald, which competes in an industry that’s accustomed to very slow change.
  2. Learn how many steps in the traditional innovation process can be greatly streamlined or even removed entirely.
  3. Learn how the team brought customers deep into the innovation process.
  4. Understand how to navigate resistance to change internally and in a business-to-business market.

Speaker Bios

Kelly Breitbach

Kelly Breitbach

Kelly Breitbach (pronounced “Bright-bock”) is the Innovation Product Manager at A.Y. McDonald Manufacturing Co, a leading manufacturer of water works, plumbing, pumps, and natural gas products. Kelly has been involved in the development of innovation departments for two companies, spanning healthcare technology and manufacturing. A.Y. McDonald was founded in 1856. In 2021, the company was selected as a finalist for the PDMA Outstanding Innovator Award.




Matt PhillipsMatt Phillips

Matt Phillips is President and Founder of Phillips and Company, innovation consultancy based in Chicago. Over the last two decades, his firm’s clients have included Pepsi, Kraft, Wells Fargo, Paramount Pictures, the TSA and A.Y. McDonald. Matt has an MBA from Kellogg at Northwestern University and is a graduate of The Second City’s conservatory program in improvisation.


PDMA Members: $25
Students: Free


Online Instructions:
Login: Zoom Meeting login instructions will be provided after you register for the event.