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Practicing Toyota Kata is Really about developing a community of scientists
Join Tessa, Skip, Dean and Oscar in this Q&A session!

In 1999 in ‘Decoding the DNA of the Toyota Production System’, Spear and Bowen made reference to TPS creating a ‘community of scientists’. Mike Rother’s ‘Toyota Kata’ (2009), in answering his 2nd research question, gave us non Toyota people a way to practice scientific thinking. Tessa, Skip and Dean have all learned through such practice. What would you like to know from them?

Apr 7, 2021 02:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Skip Steward
Vice President and Chief Improvement Officer @Baptist Memorial Health Care
Skip has been deploying TK since the summer of 2015 throughout the Baptist nonprofit health care system which is made up of approximately 21K people. He has been the main instructor for all TK training events as well as being in a Learner, Coach, and 2nd Coach role. He continues to find creative ways to promote the TK thinking pattern throughout the Baptist Management System YouTube channel, BMS Connecting the Dots podcast, and other unique approaches. He has also used TK to deploy other activities; JR, JI, etc. He continues learning through experimenting forward. Skip Steward earned an MBA and is experienced in diverse industries including automotive, machining, food, process, service and healthcare. He is a Shingo examiner, a Certified Quality Engineer (CQE), a Quality Management System Auditor, a certified Six Sigma Black Belt, and a certified Lean Champion. Skip is a certified trainer in TWI Job Instructions (JI), Job Relations (JR), and Job Methods (JM).
Dean Spargo
Team Manager Trustee Services, Complex & Trusts @Public Trust
3 years ago Dean started a more formal journey of building and developing Toyota Kata/Scientific Thinking into the way he works in New Zealand government, having been introduced to this through the New Zealand Kata School and TWI Institute. At that time he had just started what turned out to be a 2 ½ year improvement project with a back office processing business unit. By applying Toyota Kata patterns and habits in the project, it fundamentally changed not only processes but the way the team worked and approached improvement; it supported the development and embedding of Leader Standard Work across the leadership team. One area of Toyota Kata thinking that continues to challenge Dean is seeing how much of day-to-day business is based on the strongest opinion and whoever can influence most strongly at any given point in time wins. There is a better way!
Tessa Waugh
Operations Training Engineer @PCI Pharma Services
Tessa is new to Toyota Kata having got going with practice only in September last year. The alignment to the scientific method however feels quite natural, since she was previously a science teacher. After being introduced to Toyota Kata she was able to realize that those practices fit perfectly within the manufacturing industry. TK training has helped her attack new challenges by looking for incremental improvements, & always remembering to maintain a control variable to ensure she is able to accurately measure the success of process improvement. Tessa is ideal for this ‘round table’ as she brings a ‘new persons’ perspective. Tessa transitioned from the world of public education in 2017 to a position working for the Operations Director at PCI Pharma Services. After 1 year she returned to teaching but when PCI created a position that would combine her love for education with the challenges and learning opportunities of production, she jumped at the chance to return to PCI.