Kaizen is a step, a process, a process that can help your process better. It’s part of the this big methodology of the lean process. You can even consider it as one of its tools. Its geared towards continuous improvement in order for companies to be resilient on the ever-changing market. Its Kaizen was developed by a popular car manufacturing company named Toyota (you heard of them right?).
There’s always an option not to apply kaizen and there’s also always an option to apply it. It’s a 1980’s tool, it’s a pretty old school if you think about how far it existed. Should you really care about applying it? The fact is, there are so many companies out there that doesn’t even apply them in their businesses. It’s not even a requirement to register or renew a business. Would it even make a difference?
The whole concept: As mentioned, kaizen is part of this whole “lean” methodology which aims to help you remove unnecessary waste. Waste doesn’t necessarily mean being eco-friendly by managing your rubbish. Its nothing like that. The waste that lean is referring to are your process, your tools, your systems, your work station, your people, your group, organization, even your office building. The goal of lean is simple, help you identify your wastes (extra process, long working time, low quality, low customer satisfaction, overstaffing, clutter in the office, unsafe working environment and many many more).
What is the goal? The goal of lean particularly kaizen is to help you identify your pain points and help you resolve it. It will provide you the process that you can easily apply to your workflow. The end results are order and more profit for you. Most companies that applied this realized that they are actually overstaffed, that they are investing in systems that they don’t really have to, that they hire too many people to do the same things when in fact they only need a few, when they identified it, with the help of kaizen and other lean tools, they were able to clean their waste. It’s not going to happen overnight, you can have a short term goal and a long term goal for it, but it will yield positive results.
Kaizen aims for continuous improvement. It aims for one to be able to see the bigger picture and help you pinpoint where you’re struggling in your company and give you the necessary tools to help you remedy it. Most people think that if they have a higher demand that they should hire more people. If they have a bad product or bad practice that they need to hire someone or buy tools in order to fix it. Those can remedy the problems but not all are the right solution. Kaizen can help pinpoint that. Basically, it helps you see the bigger picture and how to fix any bottlenecks. If that got you interested, there’s an article on kaizen that you should check out.