About the Maverick Institute

Knowledge is the foundation of success for every organization. Whether you’re in manufacturing, services, healthcare, retail or even a not-for-profit. Whether your measure of success is productivity, patient satisfaction, safety or profits. Success ultimately derives from what your people know, how effectively they use it, and how quickly they share it.

Yet, most organizations don’t leverage knowledge to its full potential. They take it for granted, neglect it, or even downright mismanage it.

When that happens:

  • New hires “take forever” to get up to speed and productive.
  • Knowledge gaps are only discovered when serious mistakes happen.
  • Vital information languishes, unfound or found too late by those who need it.
  • Departing experts leave, taking with them critical legacy knowledge.
  • The training department throws stuff at the wall, hoping some of it sticks.
  • Everyone resents the time, expense and effort it takes to transfer knowledge because efforts to do so inefficient and ineffective.

Part of the problem is that many organizations treat knowledge like a mystical power wielded by shaman-like experts or a vast body of static water waiting for people to walk up and drink from it.

That’s wrong. Knowledge is neither mystical nor static. Yes, it is complex, ever-changing, and elusive, but if you know how to look, you’ll see that it follows predictable patterns that–like most processes–can be modeled and managed.



At the Maverick Institute, we are knowledge engineers. We know how to identify and structure knowledge critical to your organization. We transform training, learning and knowledge sharing from black magic into reliable, repeatable processes that deliver measurable high performance in areas such as:

  • New-hire onboarding and training
  • Supervision and leadership
  • Environmental health and safety
  • R&D and product design
  • Operations and Production
  • Customer/patient satisfaction
  • Project management
  • Sales and financial reporting
  • Regulatory compliance

Our work combines practical problem-solving and innovations that pull together the best concepts and methods from disciplines such as industrial engineering, psychology, artificial intelligence, and neuroscience. We have an entire toolbox of techniques ready to bring to bear on your gnarliest knowledge issues. 

Best of all, every project we do is driven by specific, quantifiable objectives. When you work with us, you’ll know exactly how much we helped you to move the needle, and when we’re done, you’ll have the ability to move and measure it yourselves.


About Our Founder, Head Maverick Todd Hudson

An industrial engineer with a Six Sigma black belt and extensive experience in Lean, statistical methods and other improvement techniques, Todd Hudson began his career managing operations for large and mid-sized high tech manufacturers.

While managing these facilities, he quickly realized that “machines = easy, but humans = hard.” He could make rapid improvements to processes, but teaching a 24/7 multi-national workforce how to do those improvements correctly was a huge challenge.

So, being a maverick thinker, he began to experiment with applying process improvement methods to training. The results were off the charts. So extraordinary, in fact, that he left manufacturing and founded the Maverick Institute to bring them to as many organizations as possible. At the Maverick, he quickly pioneered the application of Lean to training, then began seeking other methods in other disciplines that could be adapted to make knowledge capture, transfer and training more powerful. Today, the Maverick Institute offers a full package of these services through consulting, certifications, coaching and workshops.

Todd is co-author of Mindful Habits for 7 Lean Practices, as well as Eliminate, Automate or Transfer? Three Ways to Retain Critical Knowledge Before Your Expert Leaves, and two books on employing Lean methods to accelerate onboarding of young new hires: “My Personal Onboarding Plan: The New Hire’s Guide to On-the-Job Success” and “Not a Moment to Lose: The Step-by-Step Guide to Internship Success.” 

Todd is also a popular speaker at conferences and a prolific writer whose articles have appeared in Chief Learning Officer magazine, the New York Times, the Portland Business Journal and many other business media, podcasts and webcasts.

In his spare time he is a trained CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) volunteer in Oregon and helps not-for-profits in Portland solve knowledge-related challenges for homelessness and other social issues. 

Todd holds an MS in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from the University of Massachusetts, a BA in Chinese and Economics from Connecticut College, a certificate from Stanford University’s Executive Program in Strategy and Organization and a Six Sigma Black Belt from the Motorola program. He is a whiz in the kitchen, avid kayaker, cyclist, amateur filmmaker, prog-rock enthusiast and a superfan of The Big Lebowski

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