John Quirke originally graduated from the National University of Ireland Maynooth with an honour’s degree in Chemistry and Biology. John subsequently completed a master’s degree in chemical oceanography with University College Galway.
A specialisation in metal chemistry led John to an early career as a chemical process engineer with Fujitsu Isotec, where he spent time in Japan studying Japanese manufacturing and engineering techniques. John’s knowledge of process chemistry and toxicology resulted in a move to safety and environmental management with a blue-chip life science corporation.
John’s frustration with poor equipment design and poor process performance resulted in the early adoption of lean thinking within this organisation. The success of subsequent programmes, giving rise to improvements in process performance and waste reduction, led to global roles as director of business excellence and twenty-five years’ continuous improvement experience working across all business sectors.
In 2019 along with his colleagues Peter Willmott, and Andy Brunskill John published TPM a Foundation of Operational Excellence. The publication won the Shingo Institutes international publication research award in 2022. John is a senior partner at S A Partners and leads the Global Life Science and Health sector. John supports the development and publication of thought leadership within the business.
John’s other specialist areas include coaching and lean leadership, strategy deployment, process design for lean, and problem solving. John is a certified Shingo Institute Facilitator and a Master Lean Coach from Cardiff University. In addition to BSc (Hons) and MSc, John holds a Law Degree from University College Cork.