Exploring the Roots of Lean Culture at DPR Constuction - A Case Study in Lean culture

Aaron Maestas1 & Kristen Parrish2

1Project Engineer, DPR Construction, [email protected]
2Assistant Professor, Del E. Webb School of Construction, Arizona State University, [email protected]; +1-480-727-6363


In the past few decades, lean manufacturing principles have been adopted as standard business practices in an attempt to create a less wasteful, more productive, and increasingly sustainable workplace. In particular, companies in the construction industry have focused on this concept to improve quality, productivity, safety and general business. This experience has been variable: while many companies tout the benefits of lean construction, some companies stand out as the leaders in its application, though companies all employ the same lean principles. Research suggests those companies that are most successful implement lean business culture across all levels in the organization. This paper examines the commonalities between four books discussing lean culture and how the common principles from these books informed the cultural underpinnings of a particularly successful lean contractor, DPR Construction (DPR). Specifically, this paper explores the book The Toyota Way by Jeffery Liker, focusing on its four sections of lean management principles and the research and findings on successful business principles in the books Built to Last, Good to Great, and Great by Choice by Jim Collins. The authors compare these books and highlight how their principles support the culture at DPR, which exemplifies an effective lean business cultur


Lean principles, culture principles, lean culture principles



Maestas, A. & Parrish, K. 2014, 'Exploring the Roots of Lean Culture at DPR Constuction - A Case Study in Lean culture' In:, Kalsaas, B. T., Koskela, L. & Saurin, T. A., 22nd Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Oslo, Norway, 25-27 Jun 2014. pp 1413-1424

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