Extreme Toyota : Radical Contradictions That Drive Success at the World's Best Manufacturer

Overview

Extreme Toyota offers the first real, comprehensive inside look at what makes one of the world's best companies run. With unprecedented access to the inner working of Toyota, the authors spent six years researching the company, interviewing hundreds of executives and employees, and discovering the company's secret of success. What they uncovered will surprise you and change the way you think about business. Simultaneously rigidly traditional and seriously innovative, it is precisely those internal contradictions ...

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Overview

Extreme Toyota offers the first real, comprehensive inside look at what makes one of the world's best companies run. With unprecedented access to the inner working of Toyota, the authors spent six years researching the company, interviewing hundreds of executives and employees, and discovering the company's secret of success. What they uncovered will surprise you and change the way you think about business. Simultaneously rigidly traditional and seriously innovative, it is precisely those internal contradictions that make the company so successful and admired.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Heavily footed and studded with graphs and charts, this insider's view of one of the world's leading manufacturers is somewhat academic in tone yet has enough anecdotes to make it interesting." (Library Journal, May 15, 2008)
Library Journal

Authors Osono, Norihiko Shimizu, and Hirotaka Takeuchi-all business professors at Hitotsubashi University, Japan-here provide a detailed look at the principles underlying the long-term success of car giant Toyota. They begin by identifying Toyota's central "driving" forces-expansion, impossible goals, experimentation, local customization, integration, founders' philosophies, "nerve system," and "up-and-in human resource management"-and then use case studies of Lexus, Scion, Tundra, and other Toyota brands to show how the company's principles apply to day-to-day management and operations. The contradictory nature of the forces described-some focused on expansion, others on integration-form the framework for the authors' subsequent analysis of the company. A final chapter demonstrates the applicability of Toyota's approach to other types of businesses. Heavily footnoted and studded with graphs and charts, this insider's view of one of the world's leading manufacturers is somewhat academic in tone yet has enough anecdotes to make it interesting. Purchase for academic libraries with business or manufacturing/engineering programs.
—Susan Hurst

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470267622
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 5/23/2008
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Hirotaka Takeuchi, Emi Osono, and Norihiko Shimizu are business school graduates from the University of California, Berkeley, The George Washington University, and Stanford University, respectively. They are professors at one of Japan's top business schools, Hitotsubashi University, Graduate School of International Corporate Strategy (www.ics.hit-u.ac.jp). Takeuchi works closely with Professor Michael E. Porter of Harvard University, with whom he coauthored Can Japan Compete? (2000). All three authors are also frequent speakers at conferences and seminars around the world.

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Table of Contents

Preface.

Chapter 1 Extreme Toyota: An Organization Powered by Creative Contradictions.

An Amazing Track Record.

The Hard Side of Toyota.

The Powerful and Mysterious Soft Side.

How Toyota Is Like a Failed, Stagnant Company.

Management Orchestrated Contradictions, Opposites, and Paradoxes.

Embracing Contradictions as a Way of Life.

Conclusion.

Chapter 2 Six Opposing Forces That Drive the Company’s Expansion—and Keep It from Breaking Apart.

Forces of Expansion.

Forces of Integration.

Six Forces Working Together.

Resource Base.

Six Forces in Action: Case of the Lexus.

Conclusion.

Chapter 3 The Force of Impossible Goals.

Meet Every Customer Need.

The Finest Cars, the Finest Dealers.

Bypassing Japan to Make a Global Car.

Conclusion.

Chapter 4 Eagerness to Experiment.

Experimentation Hardware: The Eight-Step and A3 Processes.

Experimentation Software: Values.

Conclusion.

Chapter 5 Local Customization.

The Underdog Even at Home.

Customizing the IMV in Asia.

The Challenges and Benefits of Local Customization.

Customizing the Yaris for Europe.

Customizing the Scion for the United States Youth Segment.

Customizing the Tundra for the United States.

Disseminating Local Best Practices throughout the World.

Conclusion.

Chapter 6 The Founders’ Philosophies.

Tomorrow Will Be Better than Today.

Everybody Should Win.

Customer First, Dealers Second, and Manufacturer Last.

Genchi Genbutsu.

Conclusion.

Chapter 7 Toyota’s Nerve System—A Human Version of the World Wide Web.

Open and Lateral Dissemination of Know-How.

Freedom to Voice Contrary Opinions.

Frequent Face-to-Face Interaction.

Making Tacit Knowledge Explicit: The Toyota Way 2001.

Formal and Informal Support Mechanisms.

Conclusion.

Chapter 8 Up-and-In Human Resource Management.

Stable, Long-Term Employment.

Emphasis on Training, Training, and More Training.

Power in Teamwork.

Action Orientation.

Learning-Based Evaluation.

Conclusion.

Chapter 9 Toyota’s Resource Base.

Investing in Efficiency.

Cultivating Organizational Capability and People Required for Growth.

Making a Long-Term Commitment to People.

Conclusion.

Chapter 10 A Company Always in Danger.

Organizational Growth Pains.

Employee Complacency.

Cultural Rigidity.

Workforce Diversity.

Insular Approach to the Capital Markets.

Rise of New Competitors.

Conclusion.

Chapter 11 What Your Organization Can Learn from Toyota: Ten Powerful Contradictions.

Embrace Contradictions.

Conclusion.

Appendix A Selected Auto Industry Figures and Comparisons.

Chapter 1—Extreme Toyota.

Chapter 2—Six Forces.

Chapter 3—Impossible Goals.

Chapter 9—Resources.

Appendix B Literature Review.

Literature Review Methodology.

Notes.

References.

Index.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Insightful study of Toyota's cultural strength and internal contradictions

    Vast numbers of books discuss Toyota, but this one is far more than just another paean to how well the company uses its production system. Emi Osono, Norihiko Shimizu and Hirotaka Takeuchi, working with translator John Kyle Dorton, focus on several different elements of Toyota's culture. They explain how the company's leaders diagnose its internal contradictions and use them as a source of energy and a springboard for creativity. Where most corporate leaders see waste and a sad absence of harmonization, Toyota's executives forge a fresh road through experimentation and continuous improvement. The book offers new ideas to help you assess your organization's internal contradictions and turn them to your advantage. Despite being originally written in Japanese, this volume reads well and it features illustrations that actually help you understand the concepts behind the words. getAbstract recommends it to businesspeople who are interested in Toyota, its culture and the culture of their own organizations.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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