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The Toyota Way: 14 Management Principles from the World's Greatest Manufacturer

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  8,782 ratings  ·  358 reviews
"This book will give you an understanding of what has made Toyota successful and some practical ideas that you can use to develop your own approach to business."--Gary Convis, Managing Office of Toyota

Fewer man-hours. Less inventory. The highest quality cars with the fewest defects of any competing manufacturer. In factories around the globe, Toyota consistently raises the
Hardcover, 330 pages
Published January 7th 2004 by McGraw-Hill Education (first published December 1st 2003)
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Alex Railean
Notes for internal use:

- Have a manual process first, that allows you to understand better where automation is needed
- Treat colleagues as customers (provide output for them at the same specs as for the end customer)
- Kaisen - improve processes by a tiny bit, until all waste is removed
- Kaisen also encourages the delegation of process improvement (or proposal-generation) down from management to regular workers
- Kaisen also states that to improve something, you have to standardize it first (for r
Since reading this book every time I hear of Toyota having problems, a car recall or a design fault I smile wryly and wonder which of their principles they had forgotten.

That is unfair of me because the subtext of the book is that companies evolve and the Toyota story is about a company that moved from power looms to truck production to mass-produced cars responding to demand and aware of their business environment that they operated in. There is a little detail about how they prepare to launch
Sep 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: waiting, 2020-reread
Most people may don't know, but Toyota is considered "the autistic-genius" by car manufacturers.
They do everything differently, they stop producing lane when something is not ok, they don't produce X cars per hour, they have days when 0 cars are produced, just to be sure that every car going to the market doesn't have a defect they could fix.

This book summed up this method into 14 rules, that can be used in your house or work, but they may feel like you do something against yourself, probably ag
Vikram Kalkura
Jan 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
The Toyota way should be everyone's way. Great book with greater insights on how to be successful in your business along with how to make a profitable business. The insights can be applied not only for the automobile or transport industries but also for the software companies as well. TPS and Lean manufacturing has been created and developed by Toyota and now are used by many companies across the world. The book explains why Toyota has become one of the most successful company in the world and w ...more
Bob Wallner
Dec 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lean, re-read
The Toyota Way continues to be on my annual reread or re-listen to list. The 14 principles are universal and are as relevant today as they were when this was written.

The Toyota Way is one of those rare books that every time you read it, you learn something new, and going out in experimenting and trying to apply that new learning is exciting and rewarding.

Dr. Liker is careful to warn that although the 14 principles are a good blueprint to creating a lean organization, anyone who sets out and copi
May 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: research
Great insight into the Toyota Production System. My critique of it is that there is no discussion of drawbacks, if any. I'm skeptical of any methodology that isn't honest about its failings. ...more
Apr 10, 2013 rated it did not like it
I read this book for my MBA program. While it's a good reference for anyone who wants to become familiar with lean manufacturing, it is a horrible, dry, boring read. I'll keep it as a reference but will dread having to ever open it again! ...more
Oct 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Toyota Industries Corporation was a Japanese maker of automatic looms (device used to weave cloth) when Kiichiro (eldest son of the founder) established the Toyota Motor Corporation. Toyota had was capital poor, resource poor, and the Japanese car market was small. Kiichiro devised a strategy of Operational Excellence, along the lines of Sam Walton's strategy for Wall Mart. Eventually, the strategy of operational excellence (elimination of waste) allowed resource poor Toyota to dominate it's res ...more
Stef Bezanis
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Getting a Prius now
Jan 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
This book took me on a much longer journey than expected. I found it to be so packed with information that it took a while to wade through. Coming from a church leadership background instead of a manufacturing background meant that I did not have some of the prerequisites that the book's intended audience might have.

For me personally, Part 1 (The World-Class Power of the Toyota Way) was an interesting look into the changing world of manufacturing and lean production. It has helped me appreciate
Nov 20, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: lean practitioners
Shelves: lean
In factories around the world, Toyota consistently makes the highest-quality cars with the fewest defects of any competing manufacturer, while using fewer man-hours, less on-hand inventory, and half the floor space of its competitors. The Toyota Way is the first book for a general audience that explains the management principles and business philosophy behind Toyota's worldwide reputation for quality and reliability.

The fourteen management principles of the Toyota Way create the ideal environmen
Jul 05, 2014 rated it liked it
"Toyota has sought harmony between people, society, and the global environment, as well as the sustainable development of society, through manufacturing."

Liker focuses on the management principles that have guided this post-WW II success story. Not very critical, but well-organized and highly useful to anyone who wants to study Toyota's path. I found the parts dealing with how Toyota emphasizes that it is a "learning organization" particularly insightful,
Sambasivam Mani
Jan 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book reveals several procedures used in the manufacturing company. 4P Model (Problem Solving, People and Partners, Process and Philosophy), 5S Methodology (Sort, Straighten, Shine, Standardize and Sustain) and PDCA (Plan-Do-Check-Act or Deming Cycle). If anyone is willing to start a new manufacturing company they can use this book as a blue print. Helps us to learn some of the techniques used in Japan like Muri, Mura, Muda, Kanban, Heijunka, Jidoka and ohno and create eagerness to learn Jap ...more
Apr 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book was my formal introduction to Lean and the Toyota Production System (TPS). I have utilized some Lean tools before when I was a business analyst (although I did not know the tools were Lean at the time!) but this book provides tremendous depth past my experience. I enjoyed the learning all of the principles at Toyota, especially the emphasis on people. I highly recommend this book to anybody interested in learning about this topic.
Mar 24, 2009 rated it liked it
Jeffrey Liker offers some very good insight into the stark differences that exist between management styles/business models, particularly in the Eastern and Western cultures.

It was a struggle for me to read between the case studies and, sometimes, the author seemed too preachy about the principles of the Toyota way. The case studies themselves were very interesting and add a lot of value to the content of the book.
Yulya Roesdy
Jun 29, 2011 rated it liked it
The Toyota Way by Jeffrey K Liker gives a common sense approach to Business Process Improvements. It's a good start for everybody interested in lean management and lean production. This book goes into depth on several concepts that make the Toyota Way different from most western companies. It will definitely change the way you see business and management.
-Yulya Roesdy-
Sep 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I would recommend this book to anyone looking to optimize any type of organization. The further the organization is from manufacturing the more work required for the reader to apply, but there is an immense amount of wisdom there.

The application is universal because of how much Toyota focuses their attention on the intersection of the organizational culture and the operational systems.
Andreea Pausan
Feb 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
In a world of mass production that is continuously and rapidly changing, Toyota managed to create a lean production system based on family values, excellence, continuous improvement, leadership and little waste. The 14 principles are explained in detail, with examples and clarification. Great book, great lessons to be learned and applied by all.
May 17, 2011 is currently reading it
Reading this book because one of my hospital clients wishes to combine their approach to engagement and Lean/Six Sigma. I've purchased 4 books on this topic and this might be the best one on this dual approach. You can't maximize operational efficiency at the expense of solid people practices. ...more
Feb 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I have no doubt, it is the best TPS or Lean Manufacturing book I`ve ever read. It has several examples of how Toyota, which is the founding father of this movement, save time, effort and errors... I highly recommend it. Even if you are Spanish (like me) you could easily understand it. ...more
David Karto
Jul 13, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Amazing how "lean" movement has started way wayyyyyyyyyyy back then.... ...more
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Use visual control so no problems are hidden... indeed!
Alf Kåre Lefdal
Apr 22, 2010 rated it really liked it
Toyota created "Lean Manufacturing" through their "Toyota Production System", and has transferred these principles to their product development process. This is the foundation of Lean Software Development, as described in the books of Mary and Tom Poppendieck.

In the way Toyota runs their business, you will recognize everything that has to do with agile software development, and the book describes not only the processes, but also the leadership philosophy that it builds on.
Henri Hämäläinen
Sep 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
Whole idea behind the book is to give an better view what makes Toyota manufacturing system such a good one. It introduces TPS (Toyota Production System), Kanban and lots of other systems they use.Still most importantly it tells about the importance of company culture, continuous learning and true understanding about the thinking behind TPS.

I really loved the book, because it didn't only tell about Toyota's way of working, but about the actual culture around it.
Dan Graham
Jan 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: business
This book is really dense, but a good read if you’re looking to get some ideas and strategies for streamlining your manufacturing process. The author has a huge crush on Toyota, which makes for some sappy reading at times but definitely a worthwhile read.
Sep 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I would call this THE Lean Textbook. I have this in hardback and CD. After reading the book I have listened to the CD several times. This is a quick an easy read that increases my lean understanding each time I review it.
Jun 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I found the book extermely educating experience. I learnt so many new techniques which all the manufacturing companies should practice.
Rafael Bandeira
Jun 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Best book on Lean. A must read for everyone in any business.
Apply these concepts on your cooking and on your room cleaning process, and you'll be billionaire. Seriously.
Jul 11, 2016 rated it did not like it
The problem with this book is written by a professor. In other words, an outsider who is writing about observations.
Books written by someone actually doing the work are much better.
Senoj Jones
May 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
good book to understand how Toyota went from being just another company to an innovative manufacturer
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Dr. Jeffrey K. Liker is Professor of Industrial and Operations Engineering at the University of Michigan and principle of Optiprise, Inc. Dr. Liker has authored or co-authored over 75 articles and book chapters and nine books. He is author of the international best-seller, The Toyota Way: 14 Management Principles from the World's Greatest Manufacturer, McGraw-Hill, 2004 which speaks to the underly ...more

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