5S methodology

One of the many tools in the Lean toolbox is the 5S methodology. Originating from a Japanese management philosophy, the 5S methodology refers to the five Japanese words which describe cleaning or tidying up. Keep in mind 5S is actually more than a tool, form it’s Japanese heritage it also reflects a mindset, that of […]

Coaching Kata

Toyota has been engaged in continuous improvement for decades. They see continuous adjustment and improvement of stable processes as the most important competitive advantage. Continuous improvement is a skill that all Toyota employees must possess – this is the Improvement Kata.  The term “Kata” comes from martial arts and means “a series of recorded movements’’. […]

Critical to Quality (CTQ)

Critical to Quality (CTQ) is a pivotal concept in the Lean Six Sigma methodology, serving as the keystone for achieving excellence in both product and process outcomes. CTQ is the most crucial and measurable characteristic of a product or process, directly linked to customer satisfaction. This metric acts as the bridge between customer requirements and the […]

DMAIC model

The DMAIC model is a roadmap for Six Sigma, used to improve the quality of results that company processes produce. The letters DMAIC are short for: Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control. These five parts are filled in by following twelve steps, which guide you through the process. The five phases of the DMAIC model […]

FMEA model

What is FMEA for? FMEA is short for failure mode and effects analysis. It helps to determine and prioritize causes and, as such, is mostly used to systematically map potential product or process failures before they actually cause any problems. Determining scores within the FMEA model A team searches for potential failure factors, defects and […]

Hoshin Kanri

What Hoshin Kanri is meant for? You want to aim improvement efforts within an organisation towards the same goal. This way, all efforts to improve are connected to the same goals. As Lean-guru Masaaki Imai said: ‘’Hoshin kanri is the process of internalising policy of continuous improvement, in all layers of the organisation. It calls […]


Kaizen In 1986, Masaaki Imai released a book with the title: Kaizen, the key to Japan’s Competitive Success. Masaaki described the difference in the area of change management between the Western World and Japan. The difference? Kaizen. Fundamental difference with traditional Western management The fundamental difference lies in Change Management and the Management of Change. […]


Kanban was developed at Toyota by Taiichi Ohno. He was looking for an efficient system for achieving a high level of productivity. Kanban is a visual Lean Tool and is often applied in combination with JIT (Just-In-Time). Components are only produced when they are needed. Kanban comes from the Japanese words ‘kan’, which means ‘visual’ […]

KANO Model

Contrary to what some might initially think, the “Kano Model” isn’t related to canoes. Developed in the 1980s by Noriako Kano, this model plays a significant role in the Lean Six Sigma methodology. At the heart of this approach lies the principle of understanding and fulfilling customer needs. Recognizing these needs can pave the way […]

Lean Management

Lean Management, also known as Lean Enterprise or Lean Thinking, is the management philosophy behind the Continuous Improvement structure developed by Toyota. With Toyota Lean Management is actually a part of the broader Toyota Production System. Generally speaking, Lean Management is a management structure as well as a organisational culture in which every employee strives […]


OKR stands for Objective and Key Results, meaning the setting of objectives and results following a framework possibly wholly monitorable and measurable. This working model is a projectual and strategic element, essential for any type of business, and the adoption of which has been largely completed by organizations, regardless of their geographical location or dimensions. Among […]


PDCA, also known as the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, is a proven and powerful improvement method widely used within many organizations. With the PDCA Cycle, plans are drawn up, actions are carried out, and there is continuous evaluation. The intention of this cycle is to continuously guarantee quality. This is why there is a lot of evaluation, […]

Poka Yoke

Poka Yoke comes from Japan and was introduced by Shigeo Shingo to Toyota as a part of the production system. The word Poka means ‘inadvertent mistake’ and Yoke means ‘prevention’. It’s not about finding or correcting mistakes in a process but preventing them from ever being made. Poka Yoke is used to design processes so […]

What is Lean Six Sigma

Six Sigma is often mentioned in one sentence with Lean. Originally, Lean and Six Sigma were two different process improvement methodologies. Today, friend and foe agree that Lean and Six Sigma are complementary to each other. This is best illustrated by Michael George in his book: Combining Six Sigma Quality with Lean Production Speed. In […]

What is Lean?

In 1990 James Womack and Daniel Jones went on a world tour to promote their book: “The Machine That changed the world“. During their tour, they gave seminars on the efficient way of production realized by the Toyota Company. James Womack and Daniel Jones named this way of working: Lean Production. The theory behind this […]

What is Six Sigma

What is Six Sigma? The Six Sigma methodology is a repository of various proven quality principles and techniques. Elaborating on the quality circle of William Edwards Deming, Six Sigma is structured in 5 phases: Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve, Control. A Six Sigma professional goes through all stages and optimizes the business processes step by step. Why […]