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Improvement Kata Reference Guide
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Improvement Kata Reference Guide


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A quick reference for anyone practicing the scientific pattern of the Improvement Kata.

A quick reference for anyone practicing the scientific pattern of the Improvement Kata.

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  • 1. IMPROVEMENT KATA A SCIENTIFIC PRACTICE PATTERN FOR EVERYONE Let’s face it -- We have a natural tendency to jump to conclusions without realizing that our unconscious predispositions are influencing what we see, think and do. Make scientific, creative working a habit, and get more comfortable with uncertainty, by practicing the repeatable, 4-step pattern called the Improvement Kata. START HERE What cool situation do you want to have 6 months to 3 years from now? 3 1 USE THE OVERARCHING CHALLENGE AS A FRAME FOR THE FOLLOWING STEPS 1 Describe the overall Challenge you're striving for, in a meaningful way. 4 2 A kata is a routine you practice to make its pattern a habit 2 Current Condition: Study the facts and data of where you are now. You’re trying to see, sketch, measure and understand the current pattern, as an input to Step 3. Next Target Condition: Now describe where you want to be next on the way to the overall Challenge. It will usually take a series of Target Conditions to reach your Challenge goal. Be sure the Target Condition is measureable in some way, and has a specified achieve-by date between one week and three months out. 3 4 Future-State Mapping is a useful tool here. Iterate Toward the Target Condition: You can’t foresee the exact path to the Target Condition. The obstacles you encounter show you what you need to work on to get there. Find the path by conducting experiments daily, using the PDCA Cycles Record and asking the Five Coaching Kata Questions after each experiment. The point at which you have no facts and data is the Threshold of Knowledge. There’s always a Threshold of Knowledge. To see further, conduct your next experiment there. Condi&on   Uncertainty  /  Learning  Zone   ? Now   Current   Knowledge   Threshold   ? ? Next   Target   Condi&on   Where  we   want  to  be   next   Learn more + get the Five Coaching Kata Questions! and PDCA Cycles Record at the Toyota Kata Website! Mike Rother, v1.2 Layout based on design by GOOD Magazine