Japan Lean Study Trip – focus on people!

What are you doing six months from today?

I’ll be kicking off the next installment of the KBJ Anderson Japan Lean Study Trip! Come join me and other passionate lean thinkers from around the world for an amazing week of learning and fun.

KBJ Anderson Japan Lean Study Trip – May 12-18, 2019

If you ready to take your understanding of operational excellence – and people development – to the next level, join me in Japan for an unparalleled week of learning! Register today to not miss out on this high-value unique trip.

“This experience was transformational. I would absolutely recommend the Japan Lean Study Trip to anyone even remotely considering it.”

“Katie Anderson was exceptionally skilled, and her experiential knowledge of living in Japan was tremendous.”

“You can read all you want, but there is no comparison to seeing how the Japanese culture approaches operational excellence.” 

“It was one of my best trips in my life.”

– Japan Lean Study Trip May 2018 participants

Building on four years of experience in Japan

Making pottery with my friend and mentor Isao Yoshino in May 2016, a few weeks before I left Japan.

When my family moved to Japan nearly four years ago for 18 months, I set out with intention to take advantage of this special opportunity and to immerse myself in as much learning as possible about Japanese language, culture, and professional learning about “lean” thinking and practice in the birthplace of the Toyota Production System. And, I wanted to share my insights with you, which was the start of this blog in January 2015.

My passion for Japan has continued even after my family returned to our home in California in mid-2016. I’ve been back to Japan four times in the past two years, and as many of you know, I’ve continued to collaborate with Isao Yoshino through teaching workshops and now writing a book (in progress!).

I’m thrilled to now to share my insights, special relationships with Japanese businesses and leaders, and knowledge of Japan as a lean practitioner living in Japan, with you through offering high value learning experiences to Japan on the KBJ Anderson Japan Lean Study Trip.

Preparations continue

I’m making a visit to Japan again in February to put together final preparations for the May 2019 Japan Lean Study Trip – including visiting a few new companies to round out our program at the end of the week.  I ALWAYS learn each time I go back to Japan – even after living there for 18 months – and am excited to add some additional experiences to an already unique and special program planned.

There are so many components of the trip coming up in May 2019 that I’m excited by – and which I’ll continue to write about here. We are building on the top experiences from the Japan Lean Study Trip 2018 and making the next trip even better! True Plan-Do-Study-Adjust cycles in action.

Come join me six months from today to embark on the learning experience of a lifetime!

Focus on people development

At the core of the KBJ Anderson Japan Lean Study trip, is the focus on people – how do leaders effectively develop their people and create cultures of continuous improvement?

Participants have a chance to not only hear from, but also talk with, passionate Japanese leaders who are focused on developing people in service of customer service and process excellence.

Two of the participants on the Japan Lead Study Trip in May 2018, were so inspired by their experiences and the trip’s focus on people development and respect, that Em Cambell-Pretty, author of Tribal Unity and Managing Director of Pretty Agile Pty LTD, grounded her keynote at the SAFe Global Summit a month ago with her and Adrienne Wilson’s learning takeaways.

Explore how Japanese & Lean culture are not equal

As I’ve written about for nearly four years on this blog and other publications such as Planet Lean and LEI’s Lean Post, what we consider “Lean” thinking and practices are not equal to Japanese cultural mindset and practices.

On the trip, we’ll actively explore this topic through your experiences every day – from site visits, discussions with leaders, and cultural experiences – and daily reflections on learning.

We will visit companies with decades of practice applying Toyota Production System principles in their organizations – including Toyota and several of their suppliers – as well as companies who are earlier on their journeys, but actively focused on how to engage people to continuously improve.

We’ll also visit a local elementary school to discover how concepts such as “deep regret for waste” and community are developed at an early age.

My intention is for you to be inspired by what you learn in Japan, and identify what you can take back to improve *your* operations and leadership approach.

Intimate time with Isao Yoshino

Isao Yoshino and Dr. Javier Mercado talking over lunch on the Japan Lean Study Trip May 2018.

Isao Yoshino will be joining our trip for at least three days (and maybe longer, if his schedule permits) to not just teach you through formal lectures, but also join our group for multiple days including our site visits in the Nagoya and Toyota City areas, meals, and travel.

Mr. Yoshino does not offer this level of engagement to any other learning trips to Japan!

You will have a chance to talk intimately with this 40+ year Toyota leader on the bus and over meals. You will come to understand how this insightful leader has become a special personal friend of mine!

Coco Farm and Winery where we will have lunch.

Cultural and Culinary Experiences

You’ll learn not just about lean concepts, leadership, production principles, and customer service through visits to factories and other industries, but you’ll also enjoy special meals and cultural experience throughout the program.

And yes, we are visiting Coco Winery again in Ashikaga for lunch on Thursday!

So much more!

There are so many more highlights of the trip planned for May 12-19, 2019. I’ll continue to write more about the gemba visits and leadership insights from past visits that will be incorporated into the program.

It gives me joy to continue my own connection with Japan, and also to bring together unique experiences of professional, personal, and cultural learning for you!

Japan Study Trip complete details

Visit the Japan Trip website, where you can find complete information on the tour and how to apply, and check out the brochure PDF about the trip below.

Don’t miss out on this amazing experience! Reach out to me with any questions (katie@kbjanderson.com) – and apply today!