ATJ Blog Post #3

Improvement’s Next Big Thing?

The ATJ Hogg-Blogg #3 combines a GOOD READ summary of the NEW workbook by Mike Rother & Gerd Aulinger, Toyota KATA Culture – Building Organizational Capability and Mindset Through KATA Coaching. Plus, an article on:  Preparing to Lead in 2018 – Which is accompanied by a timely leadership Self-Assessment.  Plus more!

For us PDCA old timers – or those who have dabbled their toes in the exciting waters of Toyota KATA (TK) – we might just wonder… Could be the year to experiment with TK?  And, also to put to work, the Scientific Method it contains to building/improving products and services that could strengthen our competitiveness & exporting ability.

We make no apologies for this Blog’s emphasis on TK.  In fact, we believe that Mike and Gerd’s new workbook provides potent tools for installing a TK culture across any organization.  Implementers, such as Canada’s Cornwall-based SigmaPoint, have taken TK very seriously and now have the results which they shared with the world at last year’s KATACon3 (Check out on YouTube).  When Mike and I got wind of their achievement (That they implemented it themselves from Mike’s book Toyota KATA), we travelled to Cornwall Ontario to see their success.  It was a great day.  For more, check out our GOOD READ: Toyota KATA Culture.  (Big hint: check out Mike Rother’s personal website at  Take your time to, breathe, think, and follow.

Check out this issues’ value to you:

Article: Preparing to Lead in 2018

Good Reads: Toyota KATA Culture

Resources You Can Win With (updated list)

Events: AME 2017 International Lean Manufacturing Conference


Author: hogg-blogg

Farm Boy, Technologist, Engineer, Professor, Dept Mgr. OCAM CAD/CAM Centre. Began Lean HPM Consortium. Founded HPS with partner Bob Kerr to Develop Consortia in Canada, US & Australia. Awarded Queen's 75th Silver Jubilee Medal for Mfg. in Canada. Chaired 2008 AME Intl. Conference; Life Member AME & SME; AME Hall of Fame; McCulloch Lifetime Achievement Award. Dave & Bev live in Penticton.

8 thoughts on “ATJ Blog Post #3”

  1. The article is the most concise and practical statement I have ever read on the importance of leadership in any organization. It’s a veritable “how to” for any manager/supervisor who cares enough to put the principles to work and the consequences that could follow from doing it right. In it’s form and content it is definitely new wine in new bottles and worth sipping slowly.

    If you want a counter-example, how to do it wrong, one glance at the chaos in Washington, DC will show you precisely how a failure of leadership up and down the chain of command can result in untold misery.
    You don’t have to turn the pages of your bible far to learn that when there is no vision the people ( and their institutions) perish.

  2. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d definitely donate to this brilliant blog!

    I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your
    RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to fresh updates and will share this blog with my Facebook group.
    Chat soon!

  3. Hello Hal,
    I am a bit humbled by your comments re: the “Preparing to Lead in 2018” article. The words came from so many leaders and manufacturers across this continent who have been using Lean to enable them to compete and win in such uncertain times. Many thanks. My value was to think deeply about your words and the message they carry.
    My sincere appreciation,

  4. Hello Pauline,
    Thank you for sharing your words and feelings in regard to this new Blog. I have just responded to Hal, a California reader, who really put it in perspective. I only home there will be mutual value… And thanks for the ‘Donate’ button comment I had been looking at one from WordPress but not sure I have the nerve to employ it.
    Best and thanks

  5. I love this blog post. Had I read this post a decade or so ago, I’d have been a more effective leader, I’m sure.
    In my experience, as managers or supervisors who are passionately involved in our work, we are very often in too big a hurry to offer our solutions to show off our brilliance. We enthusiastically offer solutions or directives when we would have been better off to have invited those charged with execution of those solution to develop ideas of their own. Those on the front lines have better odds of hitting the bullseye when they are nurtured to imagineer their own remedies to the challenges they face. The quality of ideas are usually better and the people are more committed to the ideas they come up with than to answers handed to them by management. Encouraging staff to think through the challenges they face gives the organization a permanent step up, as opposed to a quick fix offered by management so they can get on with other things.

    My blog post Gore’s Secret touches on the culture and philosophy of W.L.Gore & Associates, Inc. Gore lives the principle of listening to their people and asking them to contribute their slice of genius instead of shouting orders they expect to be followed. If it works for W.L.Gore it can work for other companies also. Click on:

  6. Dave, I realize your blog is dedicated to excellence in manufacturing but I would love to see the tools and processes applied to government at all levels. Can you recommend articles or books that focus on the use of Lean technologies in the public sector?

  7. Thanks Stefano, Most of the folks are Mfrs and this Blog is an extension of 20+ years of Newsletters. Each topic has come from someone, and tries I try to steer folks but not in too much detail.
    Thanks for you note. Your note fell through the cracks – my apologies for the huge delays

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