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10 Golden Rules for 
Failing with Toyota Kata 
Success Guaranteed !! 
By Karsten Seydel and Mark Rosenthal 
Karsten Seydel...
Start Kata as a new program - or better 
as an alternative Program to Lean. 
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
2! 
No1
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
"Lean" doesn't change. 
Toyota Kata is a way to 
practice foundational skills 
for scien...
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
Call Kata a new toolset 
for problem solving. 
4! 
No2
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
Call it what it is: A framework 
for developing a scientific 
thought process, so everyo...
Authorize your in-house consulting group or 
your Lean experts to launch a Kata program. 
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal!...
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
The Improvement Kata and 
Coaching Kata are for leaders 
and managers to practice, and 
...
Do a benchmarking trip to copy a 
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
Kata program from others. 
8! 
No4
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
You don't know exactly what 
will work for you and your 
organization. What is your skil...
Foster discussions about possible 
solutions instead of testing them. 
Don’t start before there's a consensus 
Karsten Sey...
You won't learn what works for 
you in front of a whiteboard in a 
conference room. 
There is no experience gained 
from P...
Go to a Kata training course and start 
training your organization directly 
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
after the c...
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
TK course training is mostly for 
awareness and for giving you 
enough information to de...
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
Let your Improvers find their 
Target Conditions by themselves. 
They're empowered after...
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
You owe your Improvers a 
clear, strategically-important 
Challenge and some coaching, 
...
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
Give a Kata Team ambitious 
financial targets and let your 
controllers check results. 
...
Financial results are lagging outcome 
indicators. 
People can (and do) find ways to 
reach them without improving the 
un...
Have your Kata team commit on hard 
project milestones, and check their 
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
results using t...
The further out a Target Condition, 
the more you need to plan. 
But a plan is only a prediction. 
Check what is being lea...
Communicate intensively about the 
new Kata program but don’t change 
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
your management st...
People answer the questions the 
boss asks. 
If you want people to use the 
Improvement Kata pattern, then use 
the "5 Coa...
Best wishes for 
your practice! 
You can’t really implement Toyota Kata 
because we can’t predict exactly how it 
will go....
Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 
Karsten Seydel ! 
! 
Lean Program Manager and Kata Leadership 
Coach at Siemens AG Berli...
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10 Golden Rules for Failing with Toyota Kata

If you don't want to fail with transformation of your organization into a learning organization, please consider these topics.

Based on his personal experience the authors describe obstacles which can be found in many organizations.

In the updated version the authors give some answers based on their personal experience.

Many thanks to Mike Rother for the comments and support and to Bernd Mittelhuber for the inspiration.

10 Golden Rules for Failing with Toyota Kata

  1. 1. 10 Golden Rules for Failing with Toyota Kata Success Guaranteed !! By Karsten Seydel and Mark Rosenthal Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Source: Personal experiences November 2014
  2. 2. Start Kata as a new program - or better as an alternative Program to Lean. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 2! No1
  3. 3. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! "Lean" doesn't change. Toyota Kata is a way to practice foundational skills for scientific thinking. Those skills are the basis for the rest of the Lean practices. 3! No1
  4. 4. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Call Kata a new toolset for problem solving. 4! No2
  5. 5. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Call it what it is: A framework for developing a scientific thought process, so everyone can work together effectively using a common approach. 5! No2
  6. 6. Authorize your in-house consulting group or your Lean experts to launch a Kata program. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 6! No3
  7. 7. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! The Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata are for leaders and managers to practice, and then to coach others in practicing, to develop different skills, mindset and culture. You can't delegate your own practice to others. 7! No3
  8. 8. Do a benchmarking trip to copy a Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Kata program from others. 8! No4
  9. 9. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! You don't know exactly what will work for you and your organization. What is your skill-development Challenge and next Target Condition? Now experiment and learn your way there... to develop your own style to suit your organization. 9! No4
  10. 10. Foster discussions about possible solutions instead of testing them. Don’t start before there's a consensus Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! with everybody. 10! No5
  11. 11. You won't learn what works for you in front of a whiteboard in a conference room. There is no experience gained from PowerPoint presentations. Go and try it with a qualified, experienced coach in order to learn what it is about. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 11! No5
  12. 12. Go to a Kata training course and start training your organization directly Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! after the course. 12! No6
  13. 13. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! TK course training is mostly for awareness and for giving you enough information to decide to try it yourself. You learn by doing. You train by doing. 13! No6
  14. 14. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Let your Improvers find their Target Conditions by themselves. They're empowered after all! 14! No7
  15. 15. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! You owe your Improvers a clear, strategically-important Challenge and some coaching, as they develop and propose Target Conditions that align with that Challenge. 15! No7
  16. 16. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Give a Kata Team ambitious financial targets and let your controllers check results. 16! No8
  17. 17. Financial results are lagging outcome indicators. People can (and do) find ways to reach them without improving the underlying systems. Challenges and Target Conditions have metrics, of course, but should be expressed in descriptive operational terms. How must the underlying system change? Why will the financial result be different? Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 17! No8
  18. 18. Have your Kata team commit on hard project milestones, and check their Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! results using traffic lights. 18! No9
  19. 19. The further out a Target Condition, the more you need to plan. But a plan is only a prediction. Check what is being learned via daily Coaching Cycles and adjust accordingly. Managers are responsible for ensuring their teams develop the scientific skills and iterative approach to achieve their goals. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 19! No9
  20. 20. Communicate intensively about the new Kata program but don’t change Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! your management style. 20! No10
  21. 21. People answer the questions the boss asks. If you want people to use the Improvement Kata pattern, then use the "5 Coaching Kata Questions" as the baseline for your own style. It won't be easy at first. You too have to practice, learn and change your mindset. But it can be highly satisfying, and it works! Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! 21! No10
  22. 22. Best wishes for your practice! You can’t really implement Toyota Kata because we can’t predict exactly how it will go. The trick is to deploy and spread Toyota Kata by using Toyota Kata. That is, leaders and managers should apply scientific skills and iterate as they strive to achieve their organization's skill-development Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! goals. 22!
  23. 23. Karsten Seydel & Mark Rosenthal! Karsten Seydel ! ! Lean Program Manager and Kata Leadership Coach at Siemens AG Berlin ! Mark Rosenthal Novayama Consulting, Snohomish WA! Blogs at theleanthinker.com! 23!

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