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The Kaizen Event Planner: Achieving Rapid Improvement in Office, Service, and Technical Environments [Paperback]

by Karen Martin, Mike Osterling
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 5, 2007 1563273519 978-1563273513 Pap/Cdr

Kaizen Events are an effective way to train organizations to break unproductive habits and adopt a continuous improvement philosophy while, at the same time, achieve breakthrough performance-level results. Through Kaizen Events, cross-functional teams learn how to make improvements in a methodological way. They learn how to quickly study a process, identify and prioritize improvement opportunities, implement change, and sustain their gains. Most importantly, they learn how to work with one another to solve problems rapidly and in a highly effective way.

In The Kaizen Event Planner: Achieving Rapid Improvement in Office, Service, and Technical Environments, authors Karen Martin and Mike Osterling provide a practical how-to guide for planning and executing Kaizen Events in non-manufacturing settings, and conducting post-Event follow-ups to sustain the improvements made.

Geared to continuous improvement professionals and leaders within the office areas of manufacturing, the service sector and knowledge-worker environments, this book provides the methodology and practical tools for generating measurable results, while building a motivated workforce and laying the foundation for continuous improvement.

The Kaizen Event Planner provides those responsible for improving office, service, and technical processes with the skills to effectively scope the activity, engage the right people, and facilitate successful Events!

An accompanying CD provides immediate access to a number of Excel-based tools.

Frequently Bought Together

The Kaizen Event Planner: Achieving Rapid Improvement in Office, Service, and Technical Environments + The Lean Pocket Handbook for Kaizen Events - Any Industry - Any Time + The Kaizen Pocket Handbook
Price for all three: $72.51

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Editorial Reviews


Karen Martin is the consultant and mentor that helped us launch our Lean journey, and we have been amazed with some of the lofty process improvements that have been achieved after less than two years of using Lean. Once 'waste' is clearly identified and resources can be reallocated to portions of the processes that do add value in the eyes of the customer, the passion for continual improvement becomes contagious.This book will be of great benefit to any leader in the planning of Kaizen events, and I plan to purchase a copy for each of our managers and Lean facilitators.
—Chat Norvell, President & Chief Executive Officer, CarePartners

Karen Martin and Mike Osterling take all the questions and potential confusion out of planning, conducting and following-up on a Kaizen Event. With thorough explanations on the development of the Kaizen Charter, to everyone's roles and responsibilities and more, The Kaizen Event Planner is the 'new' standard work for rapid improvement events in administrative / office environments. The authors are careful to capture those subtle, yet important differences between the factory floor and the office, and driving and accepting change for the better. The Kaizen Event Planner is a must have for any truly lean practitioners' library.
—Jerry M. Wright, P.E., Director, Corporate Quality Assurance, & Operational Excellence, DJO, LLC

High performing companies require that office, engineering, and other transactional processes have the same discipline of execution as shop and field work. Kaizen Events are a key part of any continuous improvement program. I wholeheartedly agree with the authors' emphasis on planning and encouraging a 'bias toward action'. This book provides a clear, step-by-step guide to planning and executing successful kaizen events. It is a detailed primer for those who want to demonstrate that rapid improvement is possible in the knowledge work environment.
—Stephen P. Turnipseed, Lean Sigma Advisor, Chevron Global Upstream

Karen Martin and Mike Osterling have put together an excellent guidebook that should be a part of every Lean Resource Library. All aspects of planning and executing a successful Kaizen Event are covered in a way that is easy to understand and to explain to others. With the specific, practical tools and methods described, both beginners and experienced practitioners can now venture into non-manufacturing environments with comfort and ease.
—Andrew Zozom, Jr., Ph.D., Director Of Process Improvement, Seattle Goodwill Industries

Without changing the culture of the workforce that ultimately carries out any improvement ideas, so many Lean efforts are left unfulfilled and, at best, not sustained. The Kaizen Event Planner will help you to avoid these pitfalls.
Patrick Graupp, Co-author, The TWI Workbook: Essential Skills for Supervisors

Martin and Osterling provide an easy to read, practical guide to planning and executing kaizen events. In addition, they provide numerous checklists and other useful tools to help the reader begin to develop a ‘culture for kaizen’ in his or her own organization which is the ultimate goal of any Lean Enterprise.
Drew Locher, Co-author, The Complete Lean Enterprise: Value Stream Mapping for Administrative and Office Processes

I have been advocating, implementing and teaching kaizen within our company for 12 years. I have read many excellent theoretical books that describe the power of kaizen but this is the first that will actually give the reader a step-by-step process for facilitating events from planning through completion and follow-up. This book is a must resource for all Lean experts and facilitators.
Edward G. Brekke, Global Director, Schneider Production Systems, Schneider Electric

The Kaizen Event Planner illuminates the organizational details of how kaizen is actually executed in the workplace and delivers a step-by-step roadmap for starting the long journey towards building a cross-company culture of continuous improvement.
—Matthew E. May, Author, The Elegant Solution: Toyota’s Formula for Mastering Innovation

Karen Martin and Mike Osterling have captured a succinct genealogy for Lean thinking and combined that with real working tools that will help orchestrate very effective continuous improvement events.
—CJ Buck, CEO/President, Buck Knives

About the Author

Karen Martin is a consultant and an instructor for the University of California, San Diego's Lean Enterprise program and San Diego State University's Advanced Lean program. 

Mike Osterling is a seasoned Lean Consultant with broad improvement experience in manufacturing, service and office environments.  He co-developed the Lean Enterprise Certificate Program at San Diego State University in 1999 and continues to teach in that program as well as at the University of California San Diego.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Productivity Press; Pap/Cdr edition (October 5, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1563273519
  • ISBN-13: 978-1563273513
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,065 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read book to sharpen your Lean skills! July 13, 2009
People who are just starting on their Lean journey can shave a year off their learning curve by putting the pointers this book offers into practice. The writing is clear, flows in an easy-to-follow sequence, and provides numerous useful summary tables. There are also multiple nuggets of wisdom for experienced Lean practitioners as well.

Plus, the book offers a CD with many of the forms that are critical to kaizen success. Even if your company already has its own Lean toolbox, you can make it better by getting ideas from these templates.

This is a great `sharpen the axe' book for beginners and experts alike.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Kaizen Event Planner August 18, 2010
I bought the "The Kaizen Event Planner" about 12 months ago and was so impressed with Karen Martin's methodology and approach for Kaizen style events, that I purchased a copy for all my team of green and black belts. We have very successfully followed the MBPM approach to run intensive 5 day Kaizens within our organisation. I would recommend the book and the approach to anyone involved in Business Process Improvement initiatives. The templates provided in the included CD are easy to use and provide a professional standard look to all the communications needed as part of a Kaizen event.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for the lean professional! November 23, 2008
The Kaizen Event Planner is a practical, how-to guidebook for any organization undertaking a Lean journey. The book outlines the preparation, planning, and follow-up that is critical for kaizen event success. The templates and step-by-step explanations are thorough and well explained. Even the organizations that are well versed in Lean implementation will benefit from this book. This book is ideal for managers at all levels of the organization and Lean facilitators. This book should be in every organization's Lean library.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kaizen Event Planner - Great resource September 22, 2012
By Eric
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you are planning a Kaizen event, this is a great resource / tool. I'm a Six Sigma Green Belt and recently went thru Lean training. Our company recently held 2 Kaizen Events and used this planner as our foundation tool. This tool made the event a breeze to conduct, easy to document and follow-up on key post-event activities and deadlines a snap. Solid they need to create a Six Sigma version...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Based on Real Experience ! November 19, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have been leading and facilitating kaizen events for nearly a decade and was excited to utilize this new book from Karen and Mike. Several times while reading I found myself shaking my head thinking, "that's exactly right!" Too many times we order a good looking book title only to be let down with more theory and less practical application? This book and their Value Stream Mapping book due out soon could become staple training materials for our continuous improvement leaders.

Rick Eberts - Global Lean Manager Energizer
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Resource For Lean Practitioners March 19, 2011
Whether you are new to Lean or experienced, this book has something for everyone. It is one of the most comprehensive, detailed resources for planning and executing Kaizen events that I have encountered. The text is well-written and easily understandable. The book also comes with a resource CD that provides an Excel workbook tool that offers templates for everything ranging from the event charter, to a planning checklist, supplies checklist, and sustainability audits. I work in healthcare, and the authors have done an excellent job of providing examples in the book that encompass the type of work challenges I have faced.

This book is a must-have for Lean practitioners!
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