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Taiichi Ohno's Workplace Management Paperback – September 1, 2009
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"This book brings to us Taiichi Ohno's philosophy of workplace management - the thinking behind the Toyota Production System. I personally get a thrill down my spine to read these thoughts in Ohno's own words. My favorite part is his discussion of the misconceptions hidden within common sense and how management needs a revolution of awareness. " - Dr. Jeffrey Liker, Director of Japan Technology Management Program, University of Michigan and Author, The Toyota Way --Taiichi Ohno's Workplace Management
"Many lean students would want nothing more than to spend a day with Taiichi Ohno walking through their plant. This book is the closest thing we have left to that experience." - Jamie Flinchbaugh, Co-author "The Hitchhiker's Guide to Lean: Lessons from the Road" --Taiichi Ohno's Workplace Management
About the Author
Taiichi Ohno was born in Dalian, China on February 29, 1912. He joined Toyoda Boshoku in 1932 after graduating from the mechanical engineering department of Nagoya Technical High School. He was transferred to Toyota Motor Company in 1943, and he was named as the machine shop manager in 1949. He was promoted at Toyota to director in 1954, managing director in 1964, senior managing director in 1970, and executive vice president in 1975. Ohno retired from Toyota in 1978. Taiichi Ohno is the father of the Toyota Production System. Taiichi Ohno authored three works: The Toyota Production System: Beyond Large-Scale Production, Taiichi Ohno s Workplace Management, and Just-In-Time For Today and Tomorrow with Setsuo Mito Taiichi Ohno died on May 28, 1990 in Toyota City, Japan. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
Workplace management is a collection of short transcripts of Taiichi Ohno's spoken monologues. As a transcript of spoken word, it is not extensively polished, although the English translation is high-quality language. The book offers both a first-person historical perspective into Lean and the development of various Lean tools as well as insight into the value base on which Lean was built.
For example, the way Ohno quotes and speaks of Confucius give clear insight into the Confucian roots of Lean, which are not often discussed. I believe that these roots are vital for the Lean concept of respect for people. On the other hand, these ideals are not completely alien to the Western world either, as both the Aristotelian concept of the golden mean and John Stuart Mill's defense of freedom of speech share the some of the same values. Thus, while this is an interesting subject, understanding these roots is not strictly necessary for creating a Lean system.
If you are new to Lean, I would not recommend this book. The concepts are not clearly explained and the book follows no clear path from start to finish.
If you just want to use Lean, I am not sure whether I should recommend this book to you either. The tools and most of the reasons behind them are more clearly explained in more recent works, for example in those of Jeffrey Liker, Mike Rother, and Masaaki Imai.
You should read this book if you are interested in the values that shaped Lean (although you need to read between the lines to get there) or if you are interested in a first-person historical narrative of the beginnings of Lean. It is a short book, so if you have even slight interest in these subjects, reading it will not take a long time.