The Japanese philosophy KAIZEN and the management system based thereon become more and more popular in the Western management systems. The system, used for many years in companies such as Toyota, Honda, Sony, found many followers in the United States and countries of the Western Europe. It becomes more and more popular in Poland too. In October last year, the Kaizen management system was implemented in the Synthos Group.
The KAIZEN name originates from Japanese words KAI – which denotes a change and ZEN – i.e. good. KAIZEN means continuous improvement, upgrading.
Application of the KAIZEN philosophy in an enterprise consists in involvement of all employees of the organization, regardless of a level, in continuous search for ideas aimed at improvement of their own work environment.
The assumption of KAIZEN is implementing even minor improvements in all domains of operation and in every work place. In practice, it usually looks like the workers of every level may report suggestions on improvements of their own work places, which are best known just by themselves. Therefore, Kaizen breaks organizational barriers, enabling the rank and file workers to influence a way that their work is being done. An additional motivation is rewarding the workers for their ideas. There is a given number of points specified in rules for every proposal accepted for execution. Later on, the collected points may be exchanged for rewards.
Implementation of the system in the Synthos company turned out to be an appropriate idea. It is proven not only by a number of reported proposals improving the work – 300 within the first three months – but also by involvement of workers in the execution of the suggested solutions.