To Life

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.

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


The Institute for Enterprise Excellence (IEX), founded by Jacob Raymer in 2013, is a research, education and coaching institution that focuses on helping organizations build principle-based architecture to achieve world-class results.

Jacob Raymer is an internationally recognized speaker addressing corporate and public audiences on the subjects of leadership roles & responsibilities, cultural transformation, and how to achieve enterprise excellence with the right behavior and sustainable long-term results.

As the former Shingo Prize Director of Education at the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business, Jacob co-created the Shingo Model from key insights gained through partnerships with Steven Covey and Ritsuo Shingo (Former CEO of Toyota China). The Shingo Prize is regarded as the premier operational excellence award and recognition program in the world with Business Week dubbing The Shingo Prize as “the Nobel Prize of Manufacturing.” For over 10 years Jacob has developed and trained Shingo Examiners and 1000’s of individuals worldwide on how to assess and implement lean transformation by applying the Shingo Model and its principles. He continues to lecture at the Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University in graduate courses such as “Leadership and Operational Excellence in a Global Context”, and “Principles of Operational Excellence” – where he brings practical application to the theoretical philosophy of excellence.

In 2006, Jacob pioneered a concept called key behavior indicators (KBI) with organizations such as Daimler, Goodyear Tire, Christie Clinic, and Medtronic. Organizations are usually familiar with key performance indicators (KPI) but often fail to focus on the behavior in how to achieve such performance results, which is why we often see work-a-rounds, fire-fighting and heroic efforts to achieve results. With the combining of the two (KPI & KBI) the Institute for Enterprise Excellence has lead the development of learning and application of:

  • Behavior-based strategy deployment,
  • Building systems to drive the right behavior,
  • Mapping principle-behavior, systems and tools, and
  • Internal assessments focusing on KBI & KPI


Max Brown is a speaker, leadership coach and author. As a partner at the Institute for Enterprise Excellence (IEX), and an advisor to the Shingo Institute at Utah State University, Max works with leading organizations to create purpose driven workplaces.

Over the past twenty years, Max has made nearly three thousand presentations and met with leaders in locations all around the world. He’s taken clients rappelling off the Great Wall of China, facilitated at the Parliament of World Religions Conference in Spain, and spoken in hundreds of cities including Athens, Bangalore, Beijing, Dublin, Hong Kong, The Hague, Mumbai, Paris, New York, Shanghai, Singapore, Toronto, Vancouver, and Sydney . . . Nebraska.

Max regularly presents at one of GE’s highest-rated leadership programs sharing insights from his book, “Leadership Vertigo: Why Even the Best Leaders Go Off Course and How They Can Get Back On Track.” He is a recommended “all-star” keynote speaker from the International Association of Business Communicators and his keynotes consistently receive rave reviews from clients like: 3M, American Express, Southwest Airlines, The Nature Conservancy, HSBC and The Canadian Federal Government.

He has a certificate in Leadership Coaching from Georgetown University, a master’s degree in Organizational Learning from George Mason University, and graduated magna cum laude from Brigham Young University. He also speaks Mandarin Chinese after seven years of living in Taipei and Shanghai.


Mike Stoecklein was most recently the Healthcare Value Network (HVN) Director at the ThedaCare Center For Healthcare Value.  Mike oversaw the systems and activities that support the peer-to-peer learning network that comprises approximately 60 healthcare organizations in the United States and Canada.

Mike has been collaborating with Jacob Raymer since the HVN partnered with the Shingo Institute to learn about and use the Shingo model for assessing the progress of HVN organizations on their lean cultural transformations.  The result of this collaboration has been the continued evolution of the IEX transformation model.

Prior to his work at the ThedaCare Center, Mike served as Vice President of Operational Improvement at Catholic Health Initiatives where he coached leaders and mangers in the principles of operational excellence using management principles he learned directly from Dr. W. Edwards Deming from 1985-1993.   Mike also served as a Vice President of Transformation Resources at the Wheaton Franciscan Health System, as well as the Healthcare Market Development Director at the American Society for Quality.

Mike earned his Master's Degree in healthcare administration from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, a Bachelor of Fine Arts from California State University - Hayward, and a Bachelor of Science in health administration from Southern Illinois University - Carbondale, IL.