What is A Kaizen Event?
Kaizen events are a method of continuous improvements that take place in approximately 30 days. The founding idea of kaizen is to create a culture of continuous improvement where all employees in an organization are actively engaged in improving the company. This can be achieved by focusing on specific areas of the company to improve and creating strategies to do so.
What are the 5 founding elements of Kaizen?
- Personal Discipline
- Improved Morale
- Quality Circles
- Suggestions for Improvement
What are the 2 key factors in Kaizen?
- Elimination of waste and inefficiency
What are some of the benefits of Kaizen?
One of the most obvious benefits of Kaizen is the improved processes within a business. However, that is not the only benefit! Kaizen also encourages teamwork and ownership of work. Teams work together and take responsibility for their work, as well as have the opportunity to make improvements that have a direct impact on their own day to day working experience. This can help people take pride in the work that they do and ultimately be successful, which benefits both employee morale and the organization.
Kaizen also gets employees to be actively involved and engaged with the company, which leads to lower turnover. Employees that feel more engaged with the company feel like they have a direct impact on the company’s performance and have a higher incentive to help it succeed. Companies with more engaged employees also foster a strong culture and community within the company, which leads to an environment where innovation, teamwork, and problem solving are encouraged.
The Kaizen Process
The Kaizen continuous improvement process is broken up into 6 phases:
- Identify a problem or opportunity for improvement
- Analyze the process
- Develop an optimal solution
- Implement the solution
- Study the results and adjust accordingly
- Standardize the solution
This streamlined process is best implemented when all employees are actively looking for areas to improve and provide feedback and suggestions based on their own experiences.
Best Practices for Kaizen
- Implement Training: Everyone in the organization needs to be aware of what Kaizen is, how it will help the company, and how it will help the workplace culture.
- Show Support: Employees should feel supported in their Kaizen efforts, and managers should be open and willing to listen to feedback.
- Brainstorm: Set up systems for employees to effectively communicate their ideas and suggestions for process improvements.
- Create An Open Environment: When possible, be as open as possible to all Kaizen ideas from employees and let them implement them to encourage participation and future ideas.
- Measure Results: Keep track of metrics of all process improvements.
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