Taiichi Ohno: Founding father of Kanban

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I'm seeing signs where Kanban is becoming what the Gantt chart was to project managers in the 20th century.  It's becoming all the rage in Agile and rightly so, since it provides the kind of simple dashboard to visualize where the status of your backlog of requirements are at the moment.  Futhermore, the simple and effective way to visualize the WIPs lends itself well to both high tech and low tech implementations.

Though it may seem like the newest thing, it is in fact a creation by one of the greatest process improvement thinkers and guru that also symbolized the resurgence of Japanese manufacturing after the second world war.  He pretty much is the founding father of Lean that launched the infamous Toyota Production System.

Here's a great introduction to Kanban and the history of its creation by Taiichi Ohno:

 

 

My future articles and posts here will involve many discussions of Kanban, so I thought I'd pay tribute to it's great founder.  For those who may want to read about his system directly, I would recommend reading his famous book Toyota Production System: Beyond Large-Scale Production.

Posted on: January 20, 2013 02:03 PM | Permalink

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