What is the thinking behind the idea?

In the book Toyota Kata, Mike Rother observes that the thinking behind Toyota practices is more important than the practices themselves. Yes, you might be able to improve a process by, say, copying a kanban system, but if you understand what led to that system in the first place, you have the key to toyotakatabannerimproving every process you have – from customer service to product development on around.  

Remember that the next time someone tells you about an achievement. And by all means, ask:

  • What is the thinking behind that idea/decision/action?

Achievements are far less interesting than the process that led to them. 

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