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Management directed kaizen: Toyota's Jishuken process for management development

Phillip Marksberry (College of Engineering, Center for Manufacturing, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA)
Fazleena Badurdeen (UK Center for Manufacturing and Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA)
Bob Gregory (College of Engineering, Center for Manufacturing, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA)
Ken Kreafle (College of Engineering, Center for Manufacturing, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA)

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Article publication date: 27 July 2010

7861

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze Toyota's management directed kaizen activities named Jishuken. Currently, there are many variations in understanding how Toyota develops its managers to support daily kaizen, especially when Toyota managers have different levels of understanding of Toyota production system (TPS) and skills essential in applying TPS.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper will study Toyota's Jishuken process in the context of strengthening TPS and analyze both the technical and management aspects of Toyota's Jishuken process.

Findings

When integrated into plant‐wide long‐term continuous improvement, Jishukens can be extremely effective at developing management's ability to conduct and to teach others to conduct daily kaizen and problem solving. This paper shows how Jishukens function within the TPS system to continuously improve managers' understanding of TPS both for their own concrete problem solving and to support manager's roles in communicating, coaching and teaching problem solving to production workers.

Originality/value

Most attempts to imitate Toyota fail because techniques are adopted piecemeal with little understanding of why they exist or what kind of organizational culture is needed to keep them alive. Jishuken serves as an example of a technique which is successful only when embedded within the right organizational culture.

Keywords

Citation

Marksberry, P., Badurdeen, F., Gregory, B. and Kreafle, K. (2010), "Management directed kaizen: Toyota's Jishuken process for management development", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 21 No. 6, pp. 670-686. https://doi.org/10.1108/17410381011063987

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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