Kanban: Taiichi Ohno quote

As David Anderson notes in his book, one of the best things about Kanban is improvements, continuously getting better.

Taiichi Ohno invented the Kanban idea in the 1950’s when he visited Piggly-Wiggly, an American supermarket.  He explains most of this in his book, Toyota Production System.

The book has one short section titled: Kanban Accelerates Improvements.  In that section one reads this wonderful quote:

It is said that improvement is eternal and infinite. It should be the duty of those working with kanban to keep improving it with creativity and resourcefulness without allowing it to become fixed at any stage.

Earlier in the book, he mentions many comparisons between sports and business. He mentions baton passing and rowing, two of his favorite metaphors.  Then he says:

I feel the most important point in common between sports and work is the continuing need for practice and training.  It is easy to understand a theory with the mind; the problem is to remember it with the body. The goal is to know and do instinctively. Having the spirit to endure the training is the first step on the road to winning.

Wonderfully insightful words.  As are many many more comments he makes in this brilliant work.



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