2024 LCI Congress Program Preview: An Interview with Planning Committee Members

2024 LCI Congress Program Preview: An Interview with Planning Committee Members

The LCI Congress Planning Committee is hard at work finalizing the program, and we’re excited to share a sneak peek. We spoke with Daniel Shirkey, Balfour Beatty senior director of Technology & Operations Improvement in California, and 2024 Congress Chair; and Kevin Larbecque, Founder & CEO, Integration Point LLC, 2024 Congress Planning Abstract Review lead, and past Congress Chair.

Find out what’s new and next at the 2024 LCI Congress, October 22-25, in San Diego, California, and register today!

Surfing the Wave of Lean Design and Construction—A theme inspired by a special setting.

Dan, a long-time San Diego resident, shares that, “for San Diego as a setting, we had to go with a beach theme. There is a vibe each year from the Congress location. It’s part of the whole experience. We draw attention to Lean in general and also to the location, to respect and honor our host city.

The thought behind the theme, Surfing the Wave of Lean Design and Construction, is that the wave is here, and you are catching it—the momentum and progress made in Lean construction and delivery, and the behaviors behind it. Get on that wave and join in. When you see that great set of waves out on the horizon, you get really excited, and every year, at Congress, there is that anticipation and exciting influx of new ideas.”

A special keynote address with ties to our host city.

Dan and Kevin share that they are excited about this year’s keynote speaker, Jocko Willink. Dan noted that “Jocko is a retired U.S. Navy SEAL officer, and they train out of Coronado in San Diego, which is fitting. He’s local and a fantastic, inspiring speaker.” Learn more about Jocko and stay tuned for our keynote-featured blog!

What’s new in the Core Program.

Wednesday and Thursday, Oct. 23 and 24

Dan notes, “We’re trying some new things around curating content for the first day of the Core Program, with presentations from the industry on the second day. The idea is to create a more level experience around covering Lean fundamentals in a comprehensive way while still featuring the new and best examples of Lean in the field from the industry. We’ll have-best-in-class presentations on Thursday—36 presentations selected from over 200 abstracts submitted, a record for this year. We’re striving for a balance of diverse stories and content within each of our four tracks.”

Live Labs cover Lean in action.

An integral part of the Core Program, the Live Labs experience has evolved over the years. Dan notes, “Live Labs are a great opportunity to see things in action from a Lean perspective. And for us on the planning committee, it’s about continuous improvement. A lot of time goes into setting them up and making them an engaging, fresh experience.”

Build connections and community at Congress.

Kevin and Dan share that networking opportunities are built in throughout Congress, both between sessions and during special events. A networking event will be hosted in the Exhibit Hall, and the program was tightened up to allow more time for connecting, including going out to dinner and enjoying San Diego. “The Golf Tournament at Steel Canyon Golf Club on Monday, October 22 should also be a fun opportunity to hit the links and network in great San Diego weather,” Dan adds.

Explore content for audiences of all levels and industry sectors.

Dan offers, “We get direct input from design and trade partners to ensure this is a balanced conference that covers content for designers, trade partners, and consultants.”

There is content specifically for owners too. This year during breakout sessions, there will be two sessions and a lunch geared towards owners, and 24 owner organizations are presenting.

Sessions also cater to different levels of Lean learning. “We are making sure to feature sessions valuable not only to up-and-comers but advanced practitioners as well. We’re pulling together some interactive sessions on Thursday tailored to the advanced level (but open to all) for deeper discussions. People want tighter discussion around topics, so we are accommodating space for that to occur,” shares Dan.

Pro Tip: Make the most of Congress by attending as an organization.

Kevin suggests, “Think of attending as an organization. Any organization sending more than one person can take the whole experience and translate that into something for itself as an organization. A company can look at it as an opportunity for all to absorb and see best practices and have that experience together. Then, they can come back and implement it and get that imbedded into their company. There is an industry impetus and an organizational drive to be there and to advance overall.”

Learn from each other’s successes and challenges at Congress.

Kevin notes, “Congress is as much about putting on the program as the dialog around the meeting. We all grow over the course of Congress as everyone learns together through the conversations from start to finish.”

“At Congress, we share challenges and failures that turned into successes. We intend for everyone to experience open sharing around lessons learned. It gets into the concept of reflection. To absorb what they are thinking about and have a dialog is part of the goal of Congress. That’s what advances Lean practice with each exchange at Congress,” says Dan.

Kevin adds, “Congress is continuous improvement in the purest form. Every year, Congress attendees help make it better for the next year, through their feedback, through the sticky boards with plus-deltas at Congress, and through dialog to help us make it better.”

Gain tools to help eliminate waste and advance sustainability.

“More demanding projects head towards more Lean practices to eliminate waste. Statistically, 80% of construction cost is waste and there are mountains of opportunity to be more efficient. So much about Lean is about rightsizing a project and programmatic efficiencies. Lean skillsets, tools, processes, and behaviors can enable someone on a sustainability mission,” shares Dan.

Take deep dives during Learning Day.

Congress Add-on, Tuesday, Oct. 22

Dan and Kevin note that full- and half-day Learning Day courses offer deeper dives into tools and processes that benefit from hands-on learning and examples. These include classes that provide units for the Lean credential program. “They also offer formal learning if you are looking to become a facilitator or master on various topics,” says Dan.

Experience Lean locally during Gemba Day.

Congress Add-on, Friday, Oct. 25

Kevin and Dan noted there are four exciting local Gemba sites, spanning aviation, hospitality, healthcare, and a housing manufacturing start-up.

And about San Diego…

As a happy San Diego resident, Dan shares, “My parents met on a beach ten minutes from the conference—Ocean Beach, where there’s good swells and plenty of good surfing. October is a really nice month to be here. We should have great weather. The Congress location is four miles from the San Diego Zoo, right on the trolley line in Mission Valley, and central to beaches, nightlife, and more.

The 2024 Congress is a great learning opportunity, and you get to be in a great place while you’re doing it. I suggest you stay a couple extra days or more.”

Explore things to see and do in San Diego.

Register now for the 2024 LCI Congress, October 22-25, to connect and exchange ideas within your design and construction community!