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Beyond the TPM

February 27, 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

Toyota production management (TPM) has been the representative of Japanese management for years. Even the ideas of TPM have pervasively applied in non-automobiles industries, my personal experience and interesting informed me that there are more than TPM in Japanese management.

For example, the idea of knowledge creating theory comes up with some Japanese philosophical perspective and cases of product development cases in Japan, in spite of some arguments based on philosophies and organization studies in the Western context.

How those societal boundaries to enhance or limit the innovative capacity is also another interesting issue. For example, why there are no much fabless firms and venture capitals in Japan, compare with those in US or other countries. I also curious how and could the apprenticeship in Japan survive or sustain in today’s environment. If such an apprenticeship was the major backbone for fundemental manufacutring practices, if one can use the practice-based arguments to examine the current apprenticeship in Japan industries?

On the other hand, how Japanese firms to sustain their service delivery systems both in local and overseas markets are also interesting issue. Even some may attribute this kind of inquriy as the concerns of technology / knowledge transfer, I consider the design of context for enhancing better service is also critical that worth to further develop.

Some Japanese scholars call for the importance of manufacutring capcaity in Japan, how these manufacturing capacities be developed, maintained, enhanced should also interested and beyond the concerns of TPM.

While strict organizational norms may hinder or promote the individual creativity or breakthrough, those norms may also be the basis for Japanese management practices and worth to have a close examination either.

I believe there are more than TPM, that people can learn from Japan management practices.

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