Kaizen, What Can You Learn From It?

by James Tang (14124 views)
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Estimated reading time: 1.5 minutes

For years companies like Toyota have been introducing a new way of running their systems and processes. This has led to gain in efficiency in such companies that have defined their successes and company culture. But what exactly is the secret to their success, and can it be replicated across different industries or even by individuals around the world? Well, the answer to that is actually Kaizen – the Japanese art of continuous improvement. Today we will be looking at some lessons we can learn from Kaizen in order to bring about improvements in our daily lives.

Kaizen has been spearheaded by company Toyota in their operational processes, but the fact is that Kaizen applies to both materials and information. What Toyota did instead is reoriented the flow of their business processes which in turn translated to better safety and production of their products. The changes if any need not be large scale but are instead small ideas that can produce presentable improvements. In fact, these small changes are encouraged to be same day implementations in order to enforce the policy of small improvements.

What makes this learning process so efficient is that the small chunks of incremental value actually add up over time and creates visible improvements. This enhances the human work experience and teaches people to perform experiments on their workflow in order to learn and spot redundancies in their work. The excellent part of this method is that kaizen enforces monitoring, which often goes unnoticed in the evaluation of processes until the final moment.

If you are ready to incorporate Kaizen in your lives, then here are a few guidelines to get you started on this new philosophy that may skyrocket your work proceedings.

  1. Assess

Before beginning Kaizen, you have to access the needs that your business, company or personal goal requires. For example, say you make your business more competitive, this could translate directly to more revenue on a daily basis.


  1. Plan

Now that you have a brief idea of what you wish to aim for, it’s time to plan around making this goal work. It could consist of getting the people in your department to interact more with other departments to seek opinions on creating a better product or service.


  1. Implement

Next, you would want to implement your ideas. Do so in a and daily manner that would not take long to enforce and see results with. Do not set up unrealistic plans for your employees or for yourself that will result in cutting corners or unsatisfactory results in the long run.


  1. Evaluate

Finally, evaluate your transformation process by the very same metric that you’ve set up at the beginning to ensure that what you’ve done is, in fact, moving towards the goal you have set up for yourself.

With these steps in mind, you’ll be able to see the noticeable effects that Kaizen has on your life and seek to be a better version of yourself every day.