FBC – 438 – How Japanese engineers outsmarted top notch Americans professionals

How Japanese engineers outsmarted top notch Americans professionals.

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Today I want you to hear the story about how Japanese engineers outsmarted their American counterparts.

More importantly, I want you to draw lessons from this story and apply it to your own life.

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So I've read in a in a book I don't remember which brand it was. It may have been General Motors or something like Toyota. It may have been Toyota. I don't know.

So there was a Japanese division of the car manufacturer and it was an American equivalent with different ways of functioning and different organizations and stuff, they were both producing cars.

And so the Japanese seemed to be a lot more efficient than the guys in the US. And so they sent some guys from the US to Japan to kind of like understand how they weren't that productive and stuff. And then they brought some dude from Japan to actually look at, you know, what the Americans were doing.

They realized that one of the machines that was working on the doors, had a problem, and once in a while, every 50 days or something, there was a problem. So there was a bump on the door. And the U.S. realized this problem. How do we fix it?

So what they decided to do was they hired the guy whose job was to bang on the door. The guy had a sledgehammer or something. And every time there was this problem there, I think they had to stop the whole line.

He would bang on that door and then afterwards it will restart the whole thing, something like this, you know. But anyway, there was a guy whose job was to bang on those doors and then put them back into production.

It happened like once every, I don't know, maybe it was 50, maybe 100 something. But still, they hired someone to go and fix that. And the Japanese came and they were like, but what is this dude doing?

And the guy said, yeah, well, it's a once in a while we have this problem and we bang on the door and then we fix it and then we put it back in the in production. So that way we don't have to stop the whole thing and we don't lose.

The Japanese were puzzled, they were like, these Americans are crazy. So when they went to Japan, the engineers that went to Japan, the Americans, they went there and they realized that at some point in Japan, they had they had a problem with one of the machines or something.

And it would have required stopping the whole production to actually fix it. So this is the reason why the Americans elected not to actually stop the whole thing and remove the machines and reconfigure them and all that kind of stuff, because it would have halted everything.

Whereas the Japanese, they said, look, you know, there is a problem with the machine. Well, we will just stop production for as long as necessary and we're going to fix that, which they did.

They fixed the actual machine so they didn't have to have this guy banging on doors, you know, and the Japanese were very, very surprised at how the Americans’ thought process was, which was crazy.

How Japanese engineers outsmarted top notch Americans professionals

So that's the first thing I wanted to tell you, is that the Japanese team, they elected to fix the problem once and for all.

And this is something that I see a lot in people and clients. Let's say there's this task that you have to do every single day, every day. It’s the same repetitive stuff that you have to do. And you're doing it over and over and over again. It’s just five minutes. I'll just do it.

So why don't you go to the root cause of the problem? Looking at it differently, just like the Japanese did, why don't you spend time and find a way to automate that so that you won't have to do it again? It will save so much time in the long run. For me it’s about looking at the bigger picture. It will always serve you well for the long term goal of your business.

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