Radical Improvement: 10 Tips

Continuous Improvement Mindset


8 Best Practices of Successful Companies

  • Manage processes, not people. Focus not on what they do, but on how they do it.

  • Use techniques (like "process mapping" and "benchmarking") to achieve continuous improvement.

  • Value incremental gains.... More

Barriers to Successful CIF

Kaizen Implementation Principples

The Three Questions

To Be Systematically Asked by Everyone in CIF

  • What went well and why?

  • What could have been better?

  • What should we change and do differently next time?  >>>

5 Strategies for Creating a Culture of Questioning

  • Improve: Establish a mentality that everything can and should be improved and encourage people to ask “How?” questions... More

  Inspiring Culture: 5 Elements


Don't Outsource Your Core Competencies

Balanced Organization

5 Basic Elements

Performance Management (Water):

Get Employees Involved

Continuous Improvement Firm (CIF)

3 Basic Principles    CIF vs. MP

Using 80/20 Principle  >> Top 10 Business Applications

PDSA Cycle

Cross-functional Management (CFM)

Manufacturing Strategies Used by US and Japanese Companies

Suggestion Systems

Japanese-style    Fun4Biz


Kaizen Mindset

Kaizen Implementation Principles >> 7 Conditions

Quick and Easy Kaizen

Kaizen-Kaikaku Synergy    10 Kakaku Commandments

Kaizen and Innovation


Kaizen Culture

8 Elements    Japan vs. West

Winning Organization

Balanced Organization: 5 Basic Elements

Employee Empowerment

Empowerment vs. Delegation

10 Steps    Getting Employees Involved: 9 Ways

Value Chain Management

Efficiency Improvement

Business Process Management System (BPMS)

Service-Profit Chain

Lean Production

Just-in-Time (JIT)  >>  JIT Implementation

3 Broad Types of Waste    7 Wastes


Quality Management

Total Quality Management (TQM)

Areas Targeted by TQM in Japan

Customer-focused TQM

Deming's 14 Point Plan for TQM

Kaizen and TQM >> 14 TQM Slogans at Pentel, Japan

Six Sigma >> Six Sigma at GE


Lessons from Winners

CIF    Kaizen

The Toyota Way: 14 Principles    Toyota Production System

GE Work-Out

Canon    Fidelity Investments    Infosys

Continuous Improvement Firm

Achieving great performance is a journey – not a destination.  >>>

Continuous Improvement, or Kaizen, is a policy of constantly introducing small incremental changes in a business in order to improve quality and/or efficiency. CIF is a firm continuously improving on customer value due to improvements in productivity initiated by the members of the general work force... More

Radical Improvement: 10 Tips

Kaizen Culture: 8 Key Elements



CIF versus Mass Production (MP) Firms

The ultimate competitive goal of the CIF is the ability to produce consumer goods on a custom basis for immediate delivery at costs lower than those featured by standard MP firms. The key to achieving this flexibility and lower costs lies in the generalization of the work force... More

Lean Enterprise: Kore 10 Tips

Example of a Truly Lean Value Chain


Kaizen means improvement. Kaizen strategy calls for never-ending efforts for improvement involving everyone in the organization – managers and workers alike... More

5 Principles of Kaizen

Successful Implementation of Kaizen Strategy: 7 Conditions

One of the most difficult aspects of introducing and implementing Kaizen strategy is assuring its continuity. When a company introduces something new, such as quality circles, or total quality management (TQM), it experiences some initial success, but soon such success disappear like fireworks on summer night and after a while nothing is left, and management keeps looking for a new flavor of the month.

This if because the company lacks the first three most important conditions for the successful introduction and implementation of Kaizen strategy... More

Energize Employees

To cope with today's rapid change, organizations need energized people. "Open-book management, employee empowerment, continuous improvement, participative management, and self-directed work teams are all concepts that seek to energize employees by making them a more integral part of the workplace."1... More

Importance of Proper Motivation

The functional forms alone, without the proper motivation, will not be able to generate the desired improvements. A CIF firm "that took on a such major organizational features of continuous improvement as quality circles, suggestion systems, cross-functional teams, job rotation, and permanent employment might fail to motivate the system to achieve a high-level of internal improvements because it failed to articulate a customer value approach. By adopting the forms of continuous improvement but retaining profit maximization as its raison d'etre, it would operate poorly as a continuous improvement firm, analogous to the football team whose technically astute coach did not inspire or otherwise motivate the players."2

Use 80/20 Analysis to Pinpoint Improvement Areas

80/20 Principle can establish why particular problems occur and focus attention on the key areas for improvement. Don't get too bogged in microanalysis. Just ask yourself what are the major resources or time sinks that you can cut out, where are the 80% of wastes that you could target, and understand how you would attack those.... More

Create a Process-managed Enterprise

Enterprise-wide business process management "integrates everyone and everything once; thereafter, process design, transformation and experience take place freely and continuously, not as a series of infrequent, long-winded, piecemeal and distracting "integration projects" for each new process design. In this way, participants truly learn about the process and the side effects of change on the business."3... More

Leverage Your Service-Profit Chain

Creating a work environment that encourages rapid response to customers' needs and attentive follow-through is the key to leveraging the power of the service-profit chain. This is only possible when people are empowered to make decisions and are motivated to solve problems. By encouraging employees to go beyond the literal boundaries of their jobs – to make suggestions for improvement – you gain not just a part, but the full potential of their contributions to the business... More

Business e-Coach Fun4Biz Suggestion System

Innovative IT-powered Fun4Biz suggestion system focuses on improving people. It’s all about attitude motivation, achievement, continuous growth, transparency, recognition and involvement... More

Success Stories Best Business Practices GE Work-Out

As Jack Welch began to recognize that employees were an important source of brainpower for new and creative ideas, he wanted to create an environment that pushes towards "a relentless, endless companywide search for a better way to do everything we do." The Work-Out program was a way to reduce bureaucracy and give every employee, from managers to factory workers, an opportunity to influence and improve GE's day-to-day operations, and reinvent continuously ever-more-effective ways of doing business... More

Success Stories Best Business Practices Ford Electronic Manufacturing Corp.

The 80/20 Principle is used in many corporate quality management programs. In Ford Electronic Manufacturing Corporation's quality program that won the Shingo prize, just-in-time programs have been applied using the 80/20 rule (80% of the value is spread over 20% of the volume) and top-dollar usages are analyzed constantly. "Labor and overhead performance were replaced by Manufacturing Cycle Time analysis by product line, reducing product cycle time by 95%."  >>>

Real Time Business Development

Real time development brings about change and learning simultaneously ‒ not separating the two.

Why Change Fails: 8 Common Errors

How To Overcome Resistance to Change: 10 Tips

This approach helps you improve continuously and transform your business whilst learning at the same time... More

Success Stories Best Business Practices Dell Inc.

"Constantly question – even the good stuff," advises advises Michael Dell, Founder of Dell Inc. "There's no better way to improve. And don't try to cover up bad news or deny difficult problems. Time is everything – the sooner you deal with an issue, the sooner it's resolved."... More

Success Stories Best Business Practices Toyota

Toyota’s global competitive advantage is based on a corporate philosophy known as the Toyota Production System. The system depends in part on a human resources management policy that stimulates employee creativity and loyalty but also on a highly efficient network of suppliers and components manufacturers... More

The Toyota Way: 14 Principles

Success Stories Best Business Practices Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP)

The IEHP Team Culture supports a system to provide the best health care possible to people who need IEHP's collective support.

Below are the highlights that create and maintain the IEHP Team Culture:

  • Constantly strive to improve everything you do, every process you are involved in, everything you touch... More

Success Stories Best Business Practices AVIS

In 1963, Avis Rent A Car System, Inc. debuted a new advertising campaign that featured a brand-new tagline – "We Try Harder." For Avis, the tagline is more than a slogan – it has become part of the fabric of the company that both reflects and influences corporate values values and business decisions... More



  1. The 80/20 Principle, Richard Koch

  2. Making a Difference, Bruce Nixon

  3. "The Lean Journey" White Paper by Oracle Corporation