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The Toyota Way

14 Management Principles from the World's Greatest Manufacturer

Jeffrey K. Liker

Publisher: McGraw-Hill, 2004 , 330 pages

ISBN: 0-07-139231-9

Keywords: Operations, Lean


Toggle Synopsis

What Can Your Business Learn From Toyota?

  • Double or triple the speed of any business process
  • Build quality into workplace systems
  • Eliminate the huge costs of hidden waste
  • Turn every employee into a quality control inspector

Today businesses around the world are attempting to implement Toyota's radical system for speeding up processes, reducing waste, and improving quality. But are they getting beneath the surface of Lean tools and techniques to the real foundation of Toyota's success?

The Toyota Way, explains Toyota's unique approach to Lean management — the 14 principles that drive Toyota's quality and efficiency-obsessed culture. You'll gain valuable insights that can be applied to any organization and any business process, whether in services or manufacturing.  You'll discover how the right combination of long-term philosophy, processes, people, and problem solving can transform your organization into a Lean, learning enterprise — the Toyota Way.

Table of Contents:

Toggle Table of Contents

    • Preface
    • Acknowledgement
  • Part One The World-Class Power of the Toyota Way
    • Chapter 1. The Toyota Way: Using Operational Excellence as a Strategic Weapon
    • Chapter 2. How Toyota Became the World's Best Manufacturer: The Story of the Toyoda Family and the Toyota Production System
    • Chapter 3. The Heart of the Toyota Production System: Eliminating Waste
    • Chapter 4. The 14 Principles of the Toyota Way: An Executive summary of the Culture Behind TPS
    • Chapter 5. The Toyota Way in Action: The "No compromises" Development of Lexus
    • Chapter 6. The Toyota Way in Action: New Century, New Fuel, New Design Process — Prius
  • Part Two. The Business Principles of The Toyota Way
    • Section I. Long-Term Philosophy
      • Chapter 7. Principle 1: Base Your Management Decisions on a Long-Term Philosophy, Even at the Expense of Short-Term Financial Goals
    • Section II. The Right Process Will Produce the Right Results
      • Chapter 8. Principle 2: Create Continuous Process Flow to Bring Problems to the Surface
      • Chapter 9. Principle 3: Use "Pull" Systems to Avoid Overproduction
      • Chapter 10. Principle 4: Level Out the Workload (Heijunka)
      • Chapter 11. Principle 5: Build a Culture of Stopping to Fix Problems, to Get Quality Right the First Time
      • Chapter 12. Principle 6: Standardized Tasks Are the Foundation for Continuous Improvement and Employee Empowerment
      • Chapter 13. Principle 7: Use Visual Control So No Problems Are Hidden
      • Chapter 14. Principle 8: Use Only Reliable, Thoroughly Tested Technology That Serves Your People and Processes
    • Section III. Add Value to the Organization by Developing Your People and Partners
      • Chapter 15. Principle 9: Grow Leaders Who Thoroughly Understand the Work, Live the Philosophy, and Teach It to Others
      • Chapter 16. Principle 10: Develop Exceptional People and Teams Who Follow Your Company's Philosophy
      • Chapter 17. Principle 11: Respect Your Extended Netword of Partners and Suppliers by Challenging Them and Helping Them Improve
    • Section IV. Continuously Solving Root Problems Drives Organizational Learning
      • Chapter 18. Principle 12: Go and See for Yourself to Thoroughly Understand the Situation (Genchi Genbutsu)
      • Chapter 19. Principle 13: Make Decisions Slowly by Consensus, Thoroughly Considering All Options; Implement Decisions Rapidly
      • Chapter 20. Principle 14: Become a Learning Organization Through Relentless Reflection (Hanzen) and Continonuous Improvement (Kaizen)
  • Part Three. Applying the Toyota Way in Your Organization
    • Chapter 21. Using the Toyota Way to Transform Technical and Service Organizations
    • Chapter 22. Build Your Own Lean Learning Enterprise, Borrowing from the Toyota Way


The Toyota Way

by Roland Buresund last modified 2010-02-17 00:15

Rating: ***** (OK)

This is a book more on the history of Toyota and its philosophy, than a book on Lean Techniques. That said, it does a good job on describing these, but fails to be very objective on its shortcomings and also fails to address the fact that the majority of companies nowadays are service companies (I am myself a 30 year veteran of this industry, even though some of the companies had manufacturing as well). It fails to even differentiate between "traditional" manufacturing, where Toyota and its way really shines, and for example Software Development, where the Toyota Way has to be re-interpreted soo much that it looses its original meaning (kinda of reminds me of reading the Bible or the Quaran and trying to over-interpret everything as something else...)

If you are interested in the Japanese company Toyota or in the underpinnings of Lean Production (as defined by Toyota), then this is a book for you, otherwise, you may safely skip it, as it doesn't give you any revelations.

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