The Iceberg of Ignorance – Yoshida 1989


The Iceberg of Ignorance

by Yoshida – 1989

  • 4% of Problems known to top managers
  • 9% of Problems known to middle managers
  • 74% of Problems known to supervisors
  • 100% of Problems known to front line workers

This study showed how management’s failure to understand its processes and practices from the perspective of its customers, suppressed the company’s profits by as much as 40%.

This is the main reason why the people involvement is one of the keys to a successful Lean Production implementation.

  • The numbers make sense but is there study or paper which substantiates the numbers being mentioned.
    Another thought is that the mention of management don’t understand their process and practices should be substituted with management don’t understand the problems from the prespective of/ faced by their front line employees who are internal customers. Just 2 cents worth opinion!!!

  • Nice post, however top mgmt should be aware of the key 4% that represent 80% of the waste and act accordingly. In terms of how to solve the jey challenges I agree that workers should participate, but the challenge here is to motivate people to propose effective solutions. Now In some occassions the organisation will need to find solutions outside since people after a few years working loose the ability to innovate if not properly estimulated with the outside world!

  • An answer can not be better than this for why the people involvement is essential for lean implementation.

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