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Toyota Kata: Managing People for Improvement, Adaptiveness and Superior Results
by Mike Rother
"How any organization in any industry can progress from old-fashioned management by results to a strikingly different and better way."
--James P. Womack, Chairman and Founder, Lean Enterprise Institute
"One of the stepping stones that will usher in a new era of management thinking."
--The Systems Thinker
This game-changing book puts you behind the curtain at Toyota, providing new insight into the legendary automaker's management practices and offering practical guidance for leading and developing people in a way that makes the best use of their brainpower.
Drawing on six years of research into Toyota's employee-management routines, Toyota Kata examines and elucidates, for the first time, the company's organizational routines--called kata--that power its success with continuous improvement and adaptation. The book also reaches beyond Toyota to explain issues of human behavior in organizations and provide specific answers to questions such as:
How can we make improvement and adaptation part of everyday work throughout the organization?
How can we develop and utilize the capability of everyone in the organization to repeatedly work toward and achieve new levels of performance?
How can we give an organization the power to handle dynamic, unpredictable situations and keep satisfying customers?
Mike Rother explains how to improve our prevailing management approach through the use of two kata: Improvement Kata--a repeating routine of establishing challenging target conditions, working step-by-step through obstacles, and always learning from the problems we encounter; and Coaching Kata: a pattern of teaching the improvement kata to employees at every level to ensure it motivates their ways of thinking and acting.
With clear detail, an abundance of practical examples, and a cohesive explanation from start to finish, Toyota Kata gives executives and managers at any level actionable routines of thought and behavior that produce superior results and sustained competitive advantage.
Table of contents
Introduction - Transforming our Understanding of Leadership and Management
PART I: THE SITUATION
Chapter 1: What Defines a Company that Thrives Long Term?
PART II: KNOW YOURSELF
Chapter 2: How Are We Approaching Process Improvement?
Chapter 3: Philosophy and Direction
Chapter 4: Origin and Effects of Our Current Management Approach
PART III: THE IMPROVEMENT KATA: HOW TOYOTA CONTINUOUSLY IMPROVES
Chapter 5: Planning: Establishing a Target Condition
Chapter 6: Problem Solving and Adapting: Moving Toward a Target Condition
PART IV: THE COACHING KATA: HOW TOYOTA TEACHES THE IMPROVEMENT KATA
Chapter 7: Who Carries Out Process Improvement at Toyota?
Chapter 8: The Coaching Kata - Leaders as Teachers
PART V: REPLICATION: WHAT ABOUT OTHER COMPANIES?
Chapter 9: Developing Improvement Kata Behavior in Your
Appendix 1: Where Do You Start With the Improvement Kata?
Appendix 2: How to Analyze a Production Process
Mike Rother is an engineer, a teacher,
and a guest researcher at the Technical
University Dortmund. Rother¡¯s work has
bought him to numerous companies and
hundreds of factories around the world,
where he collaborates with people to test
ideas and shares lessons learned. He splits
his time between Ann Arbor, and Cologne, Germany.
Back cover copy
Lead, Manage, and Develop Your People--the Toyota Way!
"Toyota Kata gets to the essence of how Toyota manages continuous improvement and human ingenuity, through its improvement kata and coaching kata. Mike explains why typical companies fail to understand the core of lean and make limited progress, and what it takes to make it a real part of your culture."
Jeffrey K. Liker, bestselling author of The Toyota Way
¡°By uncovering exactly what makes Toyota the standard bearer in a way that is accessible to every management level, in every industry, Rother has given the business world a true gem--Toyota Kata is a must read!¡±
Keith Allman, President, Delta Faucet Company
¡°Mike Rother's Toyota Kata is a rare and exciting event--a book that casts entirely new light on a much-heralded set of management practices, giving those practices new significance and power.¡±
from the Foreword by H. Thomas Johnson, author of Profit Beyond Measure
¡°In Toyota Kata, Rother has put his finger on the heart of the coaching process at Toyota. He has distilled the PDCA process to its simplest and most essential core. Much of Toyota's success is rooted in these subtle yet powerful behaviors Mike so clearly describes. Kata provides a level of clear insight into the key principles underlying Toyota culture in a way that can be easily understood and applied. Essential reading for any company committed to lasting culture change."
Bill Costantino, W3 Group, Former Group Leader TMMK
(Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, Inc.)