Recently translated into Italian, this book sums up the principles of Toyota’s management system
Change, but first learning how to change. Then learning how to resolve the problems (not just in management) that can crop up every day in companies. These challenges are not exclusive to today. The knot of issues that needs to be untied is quite tight. Read Toyota Kata, a book by Mike Rother that has recently been translated into Italian. It’s a good read to begin to untangle the knot.
The book is inspired by the finding that change and the impossibility of forecasting are key features of our times. Ruthless competition, new technologies and changing market conditions make the survival of companies increasingly complex. These situations require flexibility on the one hand and the ability to deal with tasks methodically on the other. The book aims to teach you to be a manager or a team leader, by practising daily routines, called “”“Starter Kata”. The team leader is also a coach, who teaches his team a way of thinking and acting so they can solve problems autonomously.
The real heart of this book is about combining a scientific method with a management method. “Scientific thinking,” as indicated at the start of the book, “is not limited to what scientists do to validate a theory, but it is a way of thinking and acting that enables us to solve problems, without jumping to unfounded conclusions arising from our prejudices about reality and without being paralysed by what is not yet known and often frightens us.”
The book has a simple structure. It starts by looking at scientific thinking and how some of its principles can be transferred into daily practice. The second part looks at the activities that those who work in the company must undertake to be able to apply the scientific method: understand the “challenge”, understand the current condition, set a goal, conduct experiments to move towards the goal. The third part is aimed at the managers of company working groups. The book ends with a series of diagrams and worksheets that can be used for the practical application of what you just read.
Mike Rother’s book is definitely a challenge within a challenge. It can surprise in some places, seem trivial in others and be innovative in others still. It should definitely be read with an open mind.
Toyota Kata. Guida pratica