Bringing Purpose to Life

Practical application of principles, systems
and tools in pursuit of enterprise excellence.

Leaders that understand how to connect the link between results and behavior can enable a lasting culture – built on principles.

The mission of the Institute for Enterprise Excellence is to “bring purpose to life” through advancing the understanding and use of a model that helps everyone in an organization work toward a common purpose. This includes the practical application of principles, systems and tools in pursuit of enterprise excellence..

IEX is a learning organization – a group of pracademics – who have captured lessons learned from many industries that help us expand the approach and application of principles, systems and tools. We know that failure is required to learn. As we engage with organizations throughout the world we see common failed approaches in utilizing the TPS (Toyota Production System) JIT, TQM, TOC, 6Sigma and even Lean – but like most failures they create a incredible learning moment that open the door to a new way of seeing and thinking.

sustainable results
As “pracademics” we observe common patterns in multiple industries and identify the practices and methods that produce sustainable continuous improvement.
growth chart, continuous improvement
continuous improvement

“The leadership education and training that I received from the Institute For Enterprise Excellence was the most helpful and most useful that I’ve ever participated in.”

Tony Ogburn, MD, Professor & Founding Chair of the Dept of Obstetrics & Gynecology
The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine
Foundations for Transformation


Performance Outcome

Guiding Principles

Consequences and Ideal Behavior


Tactical Elements


Framework and Infrastructure

our team


  • “Max, Mike and Jake have helped leadership see the missing pieces in our lean journey and have taught us how we can enhance our ability to go beyond using tools to get results to focusing on ideal behaviors grounded by principles and adjusted by systems and tools.  It’s the key to cultural evolution!”

    Lori Pelletier VP, Operational Excellence, UMass Memorial Health Care
  • “Principle-based architecture knowledge encouraged us to view our work with a new set of lenses.  Applying the knowledge through building systems enabled us to see how key behaviors get key results.”

    Curt Wymer General Manager of Toppling Goliath Brewing Co
  • "Connecting systems with principles and having a mechanism to then create those aligned systems is very beneficial – and eye opening."

    Timothy Johnson MD, CEO, La Crosse, WI
  • “Moving past tools and raising my consciousness around the principles which govern the consequences of our work has forever changed how I look at healthcare. The enormity of change needed to transform healthcare into a healthy, sustainable industry for patients, families AND healthcare workers hasn’t shrunk, but the IEX framework for thinking about the systems, tools, and behaviors  around the aligning, enabling and improving principles offers me a viable construct for tackling this problem, each and every day.  The great thinkers at IEX have helped me ‘see.’ It gives me hope for the work we can achieve and the healing cultures we can cultivate.”

    Elizabeth J. Warner MD FACP CPE, Medical Director of Continuous Improvement Support, Kalamazoo, MI
  • "Lean models and methodology helped us achieve breakthrough on technological process issues, but the enterprise excellence model and methodology helped us promote cultural evolution so that our teams can hardwire continuous improvement."

    Lorra Browne RCP, MBA, Executive Director, Embedded Lean Fellow, MemorialCare Health System
  • "Respect for people relies on challenging others to increase awareness and capabilities. The institute for Enterprise Excellence is doing just that. Thanks to their principle based architecture, we are reaching a different level of thinking.”

    Didier Rabino VP, Lean Sensei, HealthEast Care System
  • “Lean transformation is difficult to do and impossible to sustain without an associated culture change. The Enterprise Excellence model with its principles and behaviors as taught by Jake and Mike, helped inform the “why” behind the transformation. This approach  equipped us to identify, define and adopt new leadership behaviors in support of the necessary culture change across the organization.”

    Dirk van Rossum Lean Transformation Engineer, NCH Healthcare System
  • “IEX has been invaluable in our journey from changing our management system and culture to a principle based architecture where how we do the work matters in order to sustain and get our needed results.  They have exemplified the principles of humility and respecting every individual while being our teachers, coaches and mentors.  They didn’t just give us a “program” or “tool”.  They taught us the key principles and coached us to develop our management system based on our organizational needs.  They challenge us to continue learning and growing.  They truly care about our success.”

    Jamie Silva-Steele CEO; Yvette Sena, LQIP Senior Coach, Sandoval Regional Medical Center, Rio Rancho, NM
  • "The leadership education and training that I received from the Institute For Enterprise Excellence was the most helpful and most useful that I've ever participated in. "

    Tony Ogburn MD, Professor and Founding Chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine
  • “We have received a lot of positive feedback from the attendees saying you are one of the best speakers we have hosted.  I’ve heard nothing but good things. We have also received lots of requests from people wanting a copy of your book so that’s great.”

    Kevin Hamilton ArcelorMittal Defasco
  • “Max, you were terrific.  It’s no wonder that we get 99%+ ratings from the participants with great faculty like you.”

    John Loomis GE VP & Corporate Officer
  • “Max, thank you for the outstanding preparation and presentation at last weeks PGI leadership conference. You are truly an inspirational speaker and I wish you only the best. Let me know if there is ever anything I can do to help you.”

    Joel Hackney CEO, PGI
  • “Watching my first in-person presentation by @smaxbrown. WOW - a really powerful experience!”

    Doug Conant CEO Campbell Soup
  • “Max's presentation is relevant, entertaining, and thought provoking.  He is on the cutting edge in the field of leadership and how to be a more effective leader.”

    Chris Scotto DiVetta GE Corporate Leadership Staff (CLS)
  • “Planning an Association conference has multiple challenges, not least of which is putting together a slate of presenters that will educate the group while taking them beyond the meeting room.  S. Max Brown did just that for our group.  Max has an optimistic yet realistic message that will resonate with everyone.  His rich background of experiences – which is beyond the grasp of many—informs his credibility while allowing the listener to glimpse the immensity of the human experience.  Max was a joy to work with and will bring energy and optimism to your event. Our audience feedback was: “Max Brown was excellent!! Energizing”

    Leslie Miller Membership Manager National Fluid Power Association
  • "Hi Max, heard that you are in Bangalore and that you addressed UB today. My husband heard u speak and was mighty impressed. Thanks a ton :)"

    Twitter Follower Bangalore, India
  • “We always try to schedule a good speaker for the last session so people don’t leave early. I’ve been running conferences for several years and cannot recall a speaker who received so many “Outstanding,” “Excellent,” and “Great” comments.”

    Bill Passolt Executive Director PIAA CEO Fortress Insurance Company
  • “Your presentation to American Express was informative, inspiring and presented in an extremely persuasive and charismatic manner!”

    Dean Vocaturo Vice President American Express
  • “Your exceptional ability to communicate a clear message with humor, wit and razor-sharp insight is why you had the highest score of all the presenters at the conference.”

    Jacob Raymer Conference Director, The Shingo Prize
  • “When Max speaks you feel as though you are the only one in the room; that he is speaking directly to you; and that his message was meant for you. Our employees are still talking about Max and it is a month after his visit. Max’s unpretentious, approachable style worked for FCCI. It’s interesting, but 600 people feel that Max is their new best friend.”

    Lisa Krouse VP HR FCCI Insurance Group
  • “Max is tremendous! Do a larger meeting with him” “5+ Amazing”

    GE Summary GE
  • “You had a profound impact on the group in an amazingly short period of time.”

    Anne deBruin Sample SVP HR Pepsi Americas
  • "Your excellent audience evaluations qualify you as an IABC all-star speaker with the “IABC recommended speaker” designation."

    Stacey Thornberry Intl Assoc Business Communicators
  • “We rely on Max to provide a presentation that resonates with educators each year at the Florida Department of Education’s Leadership Academy. Max always delivers. His message is conveyed with wit, sincerity and a deep conviction that inspires and motivates even the most skeptical administrator. His presentations are wonderfully interactive, perfectly paced and always memorable. His evaluations are consistently exceptional. In a nutshell, Max is an amazing presenter.”

    Mary Ellen Bafumo, Ph.D. Program Director Council for Educational Change
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