Origin of kaizen
Words nearby kaizen
MORE ABOUT KAIZEN
What is kaizen?
Kaizen is a business philosophy based on making small, positive changes over time, such as for improving productivity.
A Japanese concept, kaizen refers to taking small steps toward a goal over a longer period of time instead of taking big steps that may be difficult. Kaizen is most often practiced in businesses and the workplace, where the concept is used to increase profits by consistently and slowly improving productivity, a product, or something similar.
Kaizen is also an approach to improving your own life by making one small change a day or spending a small amount of time, such as one minute a day, toward improvement. You might hear of people using kaizen to learn something, improve in a sport or hobby, or create healthier food habits. Many people like kaizen because it’s much easier to commit a small amount of time each day to slowly achieve a goal than it is to commit to a big change all at once.
Example: Ever since I discovered the concept of kaizen, my work productivity has risen tenfold.
Where does kaizen come from?
The first records in English of the term kaizen come from around the 1980s. It is a Japanese term that literally means “continuous improvement.”
One of the most famous uses of kaizen is from the automobile manufacturer Toyota. The company lists kaizen as one of the main pillars of its operation. Toyota encourages workers to point out where improvements could be made and constantly adapts its workflow and production design to constantly improve its workplace efficiency.
Did you know … ?
How is kaizen used in real life?
Kaizen is most often used in business and work contexts but is also used in self-improvement discussions.
Instead of money, Toyota worked with Food Bank (the country’s largest anti-hunger charity) to cut dinner wait-times from 90 minutes to 18 minutes.
They offered “kaizen,” a Japanese word meaning “continuous improvement,” and a main ingredient in the company’s business model.
— UberFacts (@UberFacts) January 11, 2020
To achieve a product of excellence — a #coffee that is complex, elegant and balanced — it is necessary to find just the right formula. This search for the perfect blend took me to Japan, where my younger self internalized the concept of "kaizen." #LIVEHAPPilly
— Andrea Illy (@andrea_illy) October 11, 2019
Kaizen, a one minute principle by the Japanese that helps you overcome laziness. Develop a 1 minute daily habit at the same time each day.
— Prince Ea (@PrinceEa) March 28, 2017
Try using kaizen!
True or False?
Going to work every day is an example of kaizen.