Kaizen focuses on applying small, daily changes that result in major improvements over time. Unlike many business practices, Kaizen's strength comes from requiring all workers-from the CEO to the shop floor assistant-to participate by making suggestions to improve the business.
The following is a transcript of the Kaizen Infographic:
What's this thing called Kaizen?
Kaizen is a Japanese word, meaning "KAI" (CHANGE) that is "ZEN" (GOOD). So "Kaizen" really just means "IMPROVEMENT."
It came from Japanese manufacturers working with W. Edwards Demining to improve efficiency and productivity after the second World War.
"It's not enough to do your best; you must know what to do, and then do your best." - W. Edwards Deming
Kaizen is not an occurrence. It's a process that goes on and on and on and on and on and on... (Often called CONTINUAL IMPROVEMENT)
In a US based Toyota facility
OVER 75,000 SUGGESTIONS were recorded in a single year!
ROUGHLY 7,000 employees gave suggestions
THAT'S NEARLY 8 suggestions per employee
In Kaizen, managers succeed when employees are successful and happy. Everybody's in it together. We all want to succeed!
OVER 99 PERCENT of the suggestions were implemented in the Toyota facility. How is this possible?
THE PDCA (PLAN/DO/CHECK/ACT) CYCLE:
PLAN - Get suggestions from everyone. Spell out your goal and how you'll get there.
DO - If a suggestion is promising, try it out. Sometimes you can do this immediately.
CHECK - Measure the results of your tests. Analyze what happened and why.
ACT - If the new way is better, make it the standard. Spread the knowledge.
Using Kaizen and PDCA cycle, your facility will progress one step at a time.