Kata Creates Culture


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To actually change our management system we have to practice a different way.

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Kata Creates Culture

  1. 1. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA1KATA CREATES CULTUREKata Creates CultureMobilize and focus capability in your organizationby coaching and practicing the Improvement KataCopyright © 2012 Mike Rother, all rights reserved1217 Baldwin Avenue / Ann Arbor, MI 48104 USA / tel: (734) 665-5411 / mrother@umich.eduMike RotherJuly 2012
  2. 2. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA2MANAGING FOR IMPROVEMENT,ADAPTIVENESS AND SUPERIOR RESULTSCoaching and practicing the Improvement Katagives your organization an advantageThe ability to meet challenges and improve -- to learn,adapt, grow and evolve -- is a critical 21st Centurytask throughout society“In times of change thelearners will inherit theearth; while the learned findthemselves beautifullyequipped to deal with aworld that no longer exists”~ Eric Hoffer
  3. 3. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA3WHY HAVE CONCEPTS LIKE SYSTEMS THINKING,LEARNING ORGANIZATION AND LEAN THINKINGNOT TAKEN HOLD?These concepts were presented as a guide to management practicebut havenʼt achieved the hoped-for success. Why?We can talk about an alternative management model, we candescribe it, we can prove that itʼs better and we can show examples.But none of that is going to lead to its adoption or to change. Suchapproaches are at odds with how we acquire new knowledge andbehavior. We need to focus more on building compact and clearmethods or routines that people can physically practice.People donʼt behave a certain way because they lack information.We behave one way or another because weʼre in a groove. Ourbrainʼs neurons have repeated that groove for a while and thatʼsbecome our way of thinking.Hoping to create different behavior by trying to persuade peopledoesnʼt work. What can work is deliberately practicing a differentroutine -- a kata -- that over time becomes a new mental groove; anew habit of thinking and acting.As people and organizations become proficient in practicing a newpattern they can adapt it to suit their own environment and style.Thatʼs a normal process of technology transfer.
  4. 4. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA4A QUICK EXPERIMENTTake a moment... please cross your arms.Then re-cross them the other way.How did it feel the second time compared to the first?For most of us the second time feels odd.You have to consciously think about it andbe more deliberate.
  5. 5. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA5UnconsciousThinkingDeliberateThinkingOur brain creates habits for efficiency; to free up capacityfor when deliberate decision making is necessary.Unconscious thinking enables you to get through the day bytaking care of routine decisions with minimum fuss.Unconscious thinking is fast and instinctive, while deliberatethinking is slow and intentional.The subconscious can process billions of bits ofinformation per second, while our deliberate mind can onlyprocess a few thousand per second.OUR UNCONSCIOUS HABITS ARE FAST & POWERFUL
  6. 6. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA6Habits are behaviors that have been repeated regularly andoccur unconsciously. The repeated behavior develops neuralpathways in the brain, making the behavior easier to complete.Much of what happens in an organization is a consequence ofthe habits that people in the organization have learned throughpractice, whether deliberately or by happenstance.MUCH OF WHAT WE DO IS HABITUALLike crossing our arms, performed almost without thinkingHowever, a pitfall of many habits is that the past experiencesthat created them do not necessarily represent future situations
  7. 7. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA7Our habits work well under manycircumstances, but in certaincases they lead to errors knownas cognitive biases.To navigate the world our braintries to create a coherentinterpretation of reality from theinputs it receives, but it hidesfrom us the inferences itʼs making.Because our unconsciousresponses are automatic, hiddenfrom us, emotional and potentiallybiased they may not always leadus where we would like to go.WE ALSO HAVE COGNITIVE BIASA tendency to draw incorrect conclusionsin certain circumstances based oncognitive factors rather than evidence
  8. 8. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA8UnconsciousThinkingDeliberatePracticedevelopsYou can rewire your thinking and habits by deliberately(consciously) practicing a different behavior pattern.Once the pattern youʼre practicing enters yourunconscious it gets smoother and faster and becomesthe normal, habitual way you operate.BUT WE CAN CHANGE OUR AUTOPILOTHumans have the power to develop new habits.Thatʼs what the Improvement Kata & Coaching Kata are about.You can change the culture of an organization,and even an entire society, this way.
  9. 9. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA9What would happen if you practicedfolding your arms the other way every day?It would become normal; somethingyou can do without thinking about it.
  10. 10. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA10DEVELOPING NEW SKILLS & MINDSETWe may have grown up thinking all skill and behavior isinnate -- that youʼre either born with it or not -- but thatʼsnot 100% correct.Constantlyunderconstruction
  11. 11. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA11DEVELOPING MORE EFFECTIVE HABITSFOR IMPROVEMENT, ADAPTIVENESSAND INNOVATIONHow can we be creative and effective in dynamic conditions if we tendto automatically apply old thinking & solutions to new situations?The subject of the book Toyota Kata and the ImprovementKata Handbook are the unconscious routines, known asheuristics or rules-of-thumb, that we use for dealing withproblems and challenges.Your teams can work iteratively, adapt, achieve goals andmeet challenges with confidence -- along uncertain paths --when theyʼve practiced and learned a way of doing that.The trick is to develop well-worn mental circuits not forsolutions, but for a systematic, scientific way of developingsolutions. Thatʼs what practicing the pattern of theImprovement Kata is about.That skill can then be applied to an endless number ofsituations. Thatʼs important, because we donʼt know whatchallenges are coming in the future.
  12. 12. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA12WHAT IS A KATA?A kata is a routine you practice deliberately,so itʼs pattern becomes a habitThrough practicing, the pattern of a katabecomes second nature - done with littleconscious attention - and readily available.Examples include riding a bicycle, driving acar, typing. Once youʼve learned to drive you donʼt thinkmuch about using the carʼs controls and can focus yourattention on the situational aspects of navigating the road.
  13. 13. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA13YOUR ORGANIZATIONʼS CULTUREPERPETUATES ITSELF EVERY DAYManagersautomaticallyteach theprevailing cultureMindsetandbehaviorTeachesTeam orOrganizationalCultureRoutinesHabitsRitualsNorms
  14. 14. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA14KATA CREATES NEW CULTUREWhat organizationalculture, mindset andbehavior do you want?What do you wantmanagers to beteaching / coaching?Here the manageris a coach deliberatelyteaching a way ofthinking & actingMindsetandbehaviorTeachesAffectsPracticingspecificnewbehaviorsTeam orOrganizationalCultureRoutinesHabitsRitualsNormsKATAIs Used Here
  15. 15. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA15Reality is complicated. The way forward involves iterationand experimentation, aimed at a desired condition we donʼtknow in advance exactly how we will achieve. But thatʼs OK.The goal of practicing the Improvement Kata is to makescientific thinking and working a habit. This makes teamsmore effective and allows them direct attention and ingenuityto the situational details that require conscious thought.THE SKILL PATTERN (KATA) WEʼRE TRYINGTO TEACH AND LEARNPredictable Zone Uncertainty / Learning ZoneWewant tobe herenextOur CurrentKnowledgeThresholdu Create more alignment and focus in your organizationu Increase the ability of teams to achieve goals andmeet challengesObstaclesUnclearTerritory???
  16. 16. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA16321 4Establish theNext TargetConditionTargetConditionPDCA Toward theTarget ConditionThe 5QuestionsGoandSeePLANCHECK DOACTC CT CGrasp theCurrentConditionUnderstandtheDirectionWhat challengeare we strivingto meet?A step-by-stepdiscovery processbetween where weare and where wewant to be next.What patterndo you want tohave next?What is theprocessʼscurrent pattern?THE IMPROVEMENT KATAThe Improvement Kata models the human, scientific creativeprocess and makes it something thats teachable andtransferrable in any organization. It has four steps.
  17. 17. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA17THE IMPROVEMENT KATAIS A META ROUTINEItʼs working on how you thinkEvery organization has work routines. The patternof the Improvement Kata is a different and particularlypowerful routine because itʼs a meta routine. Itʼs a "meta-habit" that aims to change our mental operating systemso our human capabilities come to greater fruition.To understand this separate WHAT youʼre working on fromHOW youʼre working on it. The Improvement Kata focuseson the HOW. That is, the Improvement Kata is a content-free pattern for how to go about improving, adapting andinnovating.Skills are usually domain-specific.  You dont learn to playbaseball by practicing soccer. But the pattern of theImprovement Kata is a way of working toward any objective.
  18. 18. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA18AND THE COACHING KATA IS A ROUTINEFOR TEACHING THE IMPROVEMENT KATAThe Coaching Kata is a set of coaching routines topractice in order to develop effective coaching habits. Its a coaching pattern to help you teach theImprovement Kata thinking pattern.The Coaching Kata gives managers and supervisors astandardized approach to facilitate Improvement Kataskill development in daily work.The coach needs to know both the Improvement Kataand the Coaching Kata!
  19. 19. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA19DELIBERATE PRACTICEItʼs commonplace in sports and music,why not also in business!Rather than trying to hold onto a sense of certaintybased on oneʼs perspective, we can derive confidencefrom practicing a kata for how to work through uncertainty.I wonder howtodayʼs gamewill go?Hank Aaron Practicing
  20. 20. © Mike Rother TOYOTA KATA20Coach LearnerCoachingKataImprovementKata