Join the Kaizen
Kaizen. A Japanese word for ‘improvement’. In business, kaizen refers to activities that continuously improve all functions and involve all employees from the CEO to the assembly line workers. (Wikipedia, 2018). Every business in this entire planet wants to succeed in what they are doing, some do better than others, it’s life and it’s a fact. But even though some businesses tend to be more successful than the others, the atmosphere inside the company might not be at its best. In the book called ‘Creating a Kaizen Culture’ by Jon Miller, Mike Wroblewski and Jaime Villafuerte, the emphasis is on ‘respect for people’. The book uses the term kaizen, which I had to look up before even opening the book, and it means human development. It’s about molding people to become better problem solvers and being able to think more creatively. Kaizen is a prerequisite for a lean organization.
The book offers different case studies that prove the point on how important it is for a business to have a kaizen culture, and how the company will benefit on having a kaizen culture. The book promotes a creative idea suggestion system, on where employees can share their ideas among others, and together they will work on self-improvement, and eventually they will establish a better sense of community, which then boosts the atmosphere and working environment.
I do believe one of the key factors of a fast growing business is a happy, trustworthy and encouraging working environment. I’ve read numerous articles on how different businesses were successfully making above 1 million profit in just 1-3 years after their launch. They all seemed to have something in common, it was the working environment inside the company. All the workers who have given interviews, told how they can learn together in a team, and by doing so, greatly enhance the willingness of co-workers to reach the same goal.
What I’ve found in during my working life experience is, that the bigger and older the company is, the worse the working environment is. See, the culture has changed, and new startups tend to recognize it and they shape the working environment to be as worker friendly as possible, and the older and bigger companies still want to use the ‘good-old’ way of treating employees and workers. If I were to suggest one book to the CEO’s of board members of a big company, it would be this book.