Go to the Gemba

“Gemba” is a Japanese term, literally “the real place”  and is a term used extensively in lean management, meaning, in effect, go to where it happens and look to understand. This originally meant the manufacturing floor, but just as easily translates to anywhere real work happens.

So often I see people doing dumb things, not because they want to, but because that is the way the process was designed, usually by someone who had not done a “gemba walk” but who had relied on a model that seemed sensible for some reason, but bore little relationship to the way things worked in real life.

Most things I see that lead to problems are caused by self indulgence, ego, and isolation, not incompetence or lack of care, so next time, stop yourself, and do a “gemba walk” to see how the users will interact with and use whatever it is you are designing.


About strategyaudit

StrategyAudit is a boutique strategy and marketing consultancy concentrating on the challenges of the medium sized manufacturing businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The particular focus is on their strategic and marketing development. as well as the business and operational efficiency improvements necessary for day to day commercial survival. We not only give advice, we go down "into the weeds" to ensure and enable implementation.
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1 Response to Go to the Gemba

  1. Pingback: 5 Strategy development tips « Strategyaudit's Blog

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