Practice Over Theory

Here is a bit of history for those interested. I received a question about the first Toyota Production System manual ever written. For many years the primary driver of the Lean / TPS efforts inside of Toyota was of course Taiichi Ohno. However for almost two decades he opposed the codification of the system into any type of manual. Some people have interpreted that reluctance o...
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Problem Solving Interview with LEI

Chet Marchwinski of LEI conducted a short interview with Art Smalley regarding problem solving and improvement. The video was just posted on-line by LEI at the following link: The book on the 4 Types of Problems is due to be published by LEI later this year. I will announce any updates when we hear of a release date ...
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Monterrey Mexico Lean Conference 2016

I accepted an invitation to speak at a lean conference in Monterrey Mexico on September 6th and 7th. I delivered the opening keynote and two workshops all on the topic of 4 Types of Problems. The book will be published in a couple more months (I hope) by the Lean Enterprise Institute. I will post updates as soon as I am informed of any release dates. In the mean time for those ...
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2016 Lean Management Conference Wroklaw Poland

3 Toyota Kaizen Methods
Here are copies of the four presentations I presented earlier this month at the 2016 Lean Management Conference in Wroklaw Poland. Over 450 people attended the conference and the feedback was quite positive. I delivered the opening keynote presentation on Leadership Shaping Principles in addition to learning sessions on Toyota Kaizen Methods and The Four Types of Problems. My n...
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Is it Genba or Gemba?

I get quite a few e-mails every year pointing out errors I have made in spelling and punctuation in various speeches or blog posts. And for the record I sincerely appreciate the feedback so I can correct the oversight or error in question. The most common e-mail (by far and away) every year is the suggestion that I have misspelled the lean phrase "Gemba" because I have instead ...
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LEI 2016 Transformation Summit

4 Types of Problems
I was asked to give a talk at the recent LEI Transformation Summit in Las Vegas on the topic of "4 Types of Problems" and ways to address each type. The content will be published in a book by LEI later this year. In the mean time for those who asked here is a pdf version of the presentation.  Thanks to all who attended and the positive feedback.  The link below should enable yo...
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Lean Conference Brazil 2015

Brazil Conference Presentation
I'll be one of the key note speakers in Brazil this month at a major lean conference in Sao Paulo. The conference theme deals with improving during slow economic times. There will be a mix of attendees from various industries and service sectors. During my 90 minute presentation I will talk about the importance of leadership thinking and "shaping" routines required to drive res...
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Lean Coaching Summit: 4 Types of Problems

I gave a presentation at the 2015 Lean Coaching Summit in Seattle Washington earlier this summer. The contents deal with establishing a logical frame work for various types of problems and coaching routines overall. The contents are part of a workbook I am collaborating on with John Shook and the Lean Enterprise Institute. We hope to have it ready to publish by the end of this ...
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