Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Best Principles of Management

When they were planting the Toyota seed many years ago, they knew what would appeal to our senses. They had a plan to get just that from us. Then, they emerged with fourteen strong management principles to take the plan right to us and to get all of our attention.

Today, they have executed that perfectly, which is the reason the Toyota brand has kept its enigmatic place in the global auto market. This is how the Toyota business philosophy was so brilliantly performed, that many are thinking its a mystery.

Jerry K. Lister explains why Toyota has become a global symbol of passionate commitment to continual improvement and efficiency. Toyota's success as the world's most profitable automaker is no accident and now, thanks to Liker's book. THE TOYOTA WAY, its no mystery, either. Liker drills down to the underlying principles and behaviors that will set your company on the Toyota way.

Fourteen principles are stated upfront, and then a chapter is committed to expatiating each of these principles. The writing is clear and many outside sources are acknowledged with a thoroughness that is uncommon in business books. beautifully, 28 Toyota executive are acknowledged or quoted-and they tell the lessons of how the automaker keeps to the path that has seen it to the top. And these management philosophies can't fail to work anywhere they are put to use in the business world.

The executive quoted in the book clearly feels that the philosophy is more important than the technical tools of production system. This insight, however, has come to them as a result of using the tools intensively for many years. and the reader should not be misled into thinking that it is possible to bypass the tools and go straight to the philosophy.

After studying the process at Toyota for over twenty years, professor Liker emerged with the 320-page "the Toyota way", revealing the fourteen fundamental management principles forming the pillar of the automaker's world-renowned system of "Lean production". Interestingly, the fourteen principles could easily be compressed into two broad categories that support Toyota's success formula: "continuous improvement" and "respect for people." And yet we know we don't improve to satisfy animals. We simply do to satisfy that rational man. being the case, it can never be bad to see the success of Toyota's management philosophy as a single piece-"Respect for people." This is the whole story behind "The Toyota way." We draw,perhaps, our biggest business lesson here: The sky is the starting point of business outfits that have learnt to respect the consumer in words and deeds.

The Toyota way insists on basing management decisions on a "philosophical sense of purpose", thinking long term, having a process for solving problems, adding value to the organization by developing its people, and recognizing that continuously solving root problems drives organizational learning.

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