The Toyota Kata coaching program will develop the continuous improvement skills your organization needs to tackle its operational challenges.
Using the real challenges facing your organization, your team will learn how to think critically about making improvements when the path to achieving the challenge is unclear. They will also learn how to coach others so they can, in turn, develop the habits and thought processes necessary for ongoing improvement.
As a side benefit, your organization will make progress towards achieving two of your current challenges.
The initial 3 hours of the program will be used to identify two challenges facing the company and introduce the participants to “the Toyota Kata Improvement Method”. Typically this happens over two meetings.
The program is delivered in daily 30 minute coaching sessions, occurring 4 times a week for 12 weeks. The sessions will be used to help the participants apply the methodology to the challenges they identified. Participants are required to carry out 15-20 minutes of improvement work between coaching sessions. Participants will attend review meetings in the 4 and 8th week.
In the course of doing the Improvement Cycles, participants often find that they need specific tools they don’t know about. Examples of these skills include: how to prepare graphs and exit run charts, calculating takt time, measurement skills and root-cause assessments. Each month participants will receive up to 4 hours per month of specific skill training just when they need it.
At the end of each four-week period the review meeting will provide an opportunity to reflect on what has been learned, what has been achieved, whether the challenge is still appropriate, and to provide overall feedback about progress.
Participants will learn the “Toyota Kata” Improvement Cycle and Coaching Cycle frameworks as identified below. The participants will work on actual challenges facing the company because that improves the learning outcomes. It also provides immediate benefit to the company.
As participants learn the “Toyota Kata” Improvement Cycle, they will learn the four steps that provide a consistent, reliable, and repeatable method to:
The Improvement Cycle gives participants a structured way to:
In each daily coaching session, participants will address five questions:
In the Improvement Cycle, participants make predictions based on what they think they know, and test that knowledge using frequent (daily) small trials or steps, comparing what they expected to see with what actually happened, reflecting on the difference and identifying new learning, that guides their next step.
The Coaching Cycle builds the habit of the Improvement Cycle, frequent small improvements supported by real data, which is distinctly different from how most organizations try to solve problems. The objective of the coaching cycles is to help participants recognize when they have made unwarranted assumptions, to help them choose small-enough steps, and to help them learn to articulate what they expect from a step or an experiment.
Starting in week 5 of the program, participants will start coaching each other. They will receive intensive feedback about their coaching. They will learn
In an initial meeting, participants and the company leadership will set two performance challenges that describe how they want the company to be operating at the end of three months. These real-world challenges will be the context for learning the new methods.
In groups of up to 3, participants will set and pursue a series of target conditions that move them closer to achieving their assigned challenge. Each target condition will be scaled to take about 2 weeks. After reaching each target condition, participants will reconsider the challenge and their current condition before setting the next target condition. This cycle will carry on until the challenge is met. In the first two cycles, the focus will be on learning the Improvement Cycle. In following cycles, the participants will start learning to the Coaching Cycle as well.
Daily progress for each challenge will be tracked on a storyboard established onsite, which will be shared digitally with the course facilitator.
All meetings are carried out via Zoom, Teams or an equivalent.
This program costs $5,000 per month, with an initial 2-month minimum. GST is extra. Each participant receives a copy of Hugh Alley's book, Becoming the Supervisor: Achieving Your Company's Mission and Building Your Team.
"I searched for a while to bring in a consultant who could teach us the Improvement Cycle. When I finally found Hugh, I had the best experience from a consultant yet.
"Hugh came in and meshed with our employees and integrated himself as if he was one of our own. Hugh's nature is soft yet stern, holding staff accountable where appropriate but also sliding in learning bits where he can. Personally, I have had many learning opportunities and not just surrounding the improvement cycle. Any topic surrounding supervision and production can be bounced off Hugh with some form of grounding information.
"I highly recommend bringing Hugh into your organization to help out in any aspects of manufacturing from plant layout, flow, product standardization all the way to line leader training."
President, Audacity Wood Products
Plant photo by Science in HD on Unsplash. Unclear Territory from Mike Rother. Warehouse from iStock photo