Toyota is not just a car maker. Are you just a project manager?

Lean Manufacturing

Toyota is the home of Lean Manufacturing. In the 50’s, Toyota developed the Toyota Production System, which became Lean Manufacturing. All world-class manufacturing today uses Lean.

There’s a classic article by Charles Fishman in Fast Company, published in 2006. It analyses continuous improvement at Toyota’s factory in Georgetown, USA.


Lean means Continuous Improvement

The author argues that Toyota is not just a car maker.

Here’s the key quote

Toyota’s Georgetown factory only looks like a car factory. It’s really a big brain–a kind of laboratory focused on a single mission: not how to make cars, but how to make cars better.

The work is threefold: making cars, making cars better, and teaching everyone how to make cars better.

At its best, Toyota adds one more level: It is always looking to improve the process by which it improves all the other processes.

Project Management needs Continuous Improvement, too

Are you just a project manager?

Or are you a Lean Project Manager with a focus on Continuous Improvement

To qualify as a Lean Project Manager, your work would be threefold

  1. Running projects
  2. Improving your project management process
  3. Teaching everyone how to improve your project management process

And are you at your best – do you add one more level? Are you always looking to improve the process by which you improve your project management process?

From Lean Manufacturing to Lean3 Project Management

Toyota makes it appear easy, by building continuous improvement into their culture. Read the Fast Company article to find out how they do it.

You can do the same for your projects. You can build continuous improvement into your Project Management. Read my new book Lean3 Project Management to find out how you can do it.

Written by Jeff on April 1, 2020 in blog
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