World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Genchi Genbutsu

Article Id: WHEBN0008442822
Reproduction Date:

Title: Genchi Genbutsu  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: The Toyota Way, Lean manufacturing, Japanese management culture
Collection: Japanese Business Terms, Lean Manufacturing
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Genchi Genbutsu

Genchi Genbutsu (現地現物) means "go and see" and it is a key principle of the Toyota Production System. It suggests that in order to truly understand a situation one needs to go to gemba (現場) or, the 'real place' - where work is done.

Application

Taiichi Ohno, creator of the Toyota Production System is credited, perhaps apocryphally, with taking new graduates to the shopfloor and drawing a chalk circle on the floor. The graduate would be told to stand in the circle and to observe and note down what he saw. When Ohno returned he would check; if the graduate had not seen enough he would be asked to keep observing. Ohno was trying to imprint upon his future engineers that the only way to truly understand what happens on the shopfloor was to go there. It was here that value was added and here that waste could be observed.

Genchi Genbutsu is therefore a key approach in problem solving. If the problem exists on the shopfloor then it needs to be understood and solved at the shopfloor.

Genchi Genbutsu is also called Gemba attitude. Gemba is the Japanese term for "the place" in this case 'the place where it actually happens'. Since real value is created at the shopfloor in manufacturing, this is where management need to spend their time.

It is sometimes referred to as "Getcha boots on" (and go out and see what is happening) due to its similar cadence and meaning. It has been compared to Peters and Waterman's idea of "Management By Wandering Around".[1] This concept quickly became so universal that new managers instinctively knew that they had to "walk around" to achieve high effectiveness levels. Whilst these ideas, with their associated lists of how-tos, are probably good ideas they may miss the essential nature of Genchi Genbutsu which is less to 'visit' and more to 'know' by being there. Toyota has high levels of management presence on the production line whose role is to 'know' and to constantly improve.

Implementation

"Gemba attitude" reflects the idea that whatever reports and measures and ideas are transmitted to management they are only an abstraction of what is actually going on in the gemba to create value. Metrics and reports will reflect the attitudes of the management questioner and the workplace responder as well as how the responder views the questioner. It also increases the chance that actual issues and unplanned events will be observed first hand and can be managed immediately; this includes issues that are not apparent to the gemba workforce.

References

  1. ^ Noel W. Hinners (October 20, 2009). "Management by Wandering Around". 
  • Jeffrey Liker. The Toyota Way: 14 Management Principles From The World's Greatest Manufacturer. McGraw Hill, 2003.
  • Jeffrey Liker, David Meier. The Toyota Way Fieldbook. McGraw Hill, 2005.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.