Building a Global Learning Organization : Using TWI to Succeed with Strategic Workforce Expansion in the LEGO Group book cover
1st Edition

Building a Global Learning Organization
Using TWI to Succeed with Strategic Workforce Expansion in the LEGO Group

ISBN 9781482213638
Published June 6, 2014 by Productivity Press
237 Pages 31 B/W Illustrations

FREE Standard Shipping
USD $52.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Building a Global Learning Organization: Using TWI to Succeed with Strategic Workforce Expansion in the LEGO® Group describes how a multinational company developed a global structure for learning based on the TWI (Training Within Industry) program to create and sustain standardized work across multiple language and cultural platforms. In this book, Shingo Prize-winning author Patrick Graupp collaborates with two practitioners who performed the planning and implementation of the LEGO Group’s worldwide Learning Organization.

The book outlines the organizational and planning models used by the LEGO Group to create the internal ability to give and receive tacit skills and knowledge. Describing how and why TWI is used as the foundation for success in knowledge transfer across diverse languages and cultures, it provides step-by-step guidance on how to establish a solid organizational foundation for your own Learning Organization.

Providing expert insight into the work of culture change, the book explains how to work with people to create motivation for moving to a new system of learning. It details the critical elements that made the implementation at the LEGO Group a success, identifies the stumbling blocks they encountered along the way, and explains how they were overcome. Case studies describe in detail what these efforts looked and felt like in actual application.

The TWI program has long been recognized for its ability to generate results. After reading this book, you will gain valuable insight into how your organization—whether large or small, national or international—can integrate this timeless tool into your operating structure and your daily culture.

Table of Contents


Setting the Course
The Need for Change
Strategic Capability Building
     Building the Molders of Tomorrow
     "And Notice Nothing Else but the Language and the Local Temperature"
Growth Creates Need for Training
     Laying the Foundation for a Global Learning Center

Preparing for the Global Pilot Project
Pilot Project Team
     Steering Team
     Project Manager
     Key Stakeholders
     The Pilot Project Team
          Learning Center Track
          Operations Track
Pilot Project Description
Needs Analysis
     Visit to LEGO Operations Mexico
     The Hungarian Phone Calls
     Discussions in Denmark
     Summary of Local Visits
Selecting the Pilot Case

Setting the Foundations for Moving Forward
First Draft of the Training Organization
Choosing the Training Within Industry Program: Why Job Instruction?
The Link between Job Instruction and Lean
     A Strong Lean Foundation
The Standardized Work Development Model
     Establishment of Global Trainer Team
     Development of Global Training Standards
     Training Locals in the New Standard
     Establishment of a Follow-Up and Process Confirmation Process
     Establishment of Continuous Improvement Structure


Testing the Global LEGO Training Organization and TWI JI
Reactions to the Change
Learning How to Make Job Breakdowns
     Facilitating the Development of Important Steps
     Facilitating the Development of Key Points
     Finding Key Points: A Great Learning Experience
First Workshop: Hungary
The Workshops
Cultural Introduction
     Social Event
"Homework" Periods

The Workshops
Workshop 1: Mexico
     Operations Track (Functional Area Master Trainers and Global Job Trainers)
     Standardized Work Chart
     TWI Job Instruction 10-Hour Class
     Videoconference Wrap-Up
Workshop 2: Denmark
     The Whole Team: Cultural Training
     TWI Introduction to Stakeholders
     Learning Center Track
     Operations Track
Workshop 3: Hungary
     Coaching the TWI Job Instruction Four-Step Method
     The Whole Team
     Learning Center Track
     Operations Track
Workshop 4: Denmark
     The Whole Team
     Sudden Realization
     Learning Center Track
     Operations Track (Global Job Trainers)
     Testing the Job Breakdown with Relevant Stakeholders
Workshop 5: Mexico
     The Whole Team
     Learning Center Track
     Operations Track (Global Job Trainers)
     Operations Track (Functional Area Master Trainers)
Workshop 6: Hungary
Approval of the Pilot Project
From Global Pilot Project to Local Anchoring
     Different Needs
     Molding Hungary
     Molding Mexico
     Molding Denmark
     General Notes on the Local Implementations


Building the Organization
Roles in the Training Organization
     Being a Trainer Is a Role—Not a Position
     Trainer Roles and Responsibilities
     Who Wants to Be a Trainer?
Building Up the Training Organization: Selection Process
     How to Spot Trainer Talents in the Organization
          Cognitive Skills
          Communication Skills
          Social Attitude
          Confidence and Leadership
          Work Attitude
          Questioning Nature
     The Interview
     Practical Exercise 1
     Practical Exercise 2
Onboarding Process
Development Process
     Job Instruction
     Training and Learning Skills Course
          Module 1: Adult Learning
          Module 2: DiSC Introduction
          Module 3: Communication and Feedback (4 Hours)
          Module 4: Training Challenges
     Building Cultural Competencies
     English Skills
Evaluation Process
Learning Points: Building the Training Organization

Learning Tools and Methodologies
Competency Overview and Learning Objectives
     Learning Objectives
Skills Matrix
     Helping Questions
Individual Training Plan
Learning Methodologies
     On-the-Job Training: Job Instruction
     Challenges to Shop Floor Training
     Classroom Training
          Classroom Training in Material Knowledge


Sustaining the Effort and Growing the Future
From Pilot Project to Program Management
Job Relations Implementation
Rollout in Asia
     Insight from the Mexico Experience
     Training Approach

In Their Own Words: Case Studies from the Implementation
Ericka Hernandez: New to the Learning Center in Mexico
Fruzsina Veress: Leadership and Implementation in Hungary
Pavel Kroupa: Key Roles and Collaboration in TWI Implementation in the Czech Republic
     Collaboration with Top Management
     Collaboration with Production Management
Ole Therkelsen: Mold Manufacturing in Mexico


View More



Patrick Graupp began his training career at the SANYO Electric Corporate Training Center in Japan after graduating with highest honors from Drexel University in 1980. There he learned to deliver Training Within Industry (TWI) and other training programs for SANYO employees inside and outside of Japan. He was transferred to a compact disc manufacturing facility in Indiana where he gained manufacturing experience before returning to Japan to lead SANYO’s global training effort. During this time, Graupp earned an MBA from Boston University and was later promoted to head up human resources for SANYO North America Corp. in San Diego, California where he settled. Graupp partnered with Bob Wrona in 2001 to conduct TWI pilot projects in Syracuse, New York that became the foundation for the TWI Institute which has since trained a vast network of certified trainers who are now delivering TWI training in the manufacturing, health care, construction, energy, and service industries around the globe. These efforts are outlined in their book The TWI Workbook: Essential Skills for Supervisors (Productivity Press, 2006) a Shingo Research and Professional Publication Prize Recipient for 2007. Graupp also authored Implementing TWI: Creating and Managing a Skills-Based Culture published by Productivity Press in 2010, and Getting to Standard Work in Health Care: Using TWI to Create a Foundation for Quality Care published by Productivity Press in 2012.

Gitte Jakobsen has been involved in organizational development and knowledge management in the LEGO Group since 1997 with roles as both staff manager and project manager in the LEGO marketing arena and later within LEGO Operations. She has extensive experience in the development of complex marketing and production processes based on her experience setting up a LEGO marketing development and production function in the Czech Republic and her activities creating Learning Centers in LEGO production sites in Denmark, Mexico, Hungary and the Czech Republic.

In 2009, Jakobsen completed a master’s degree in educational psychology at the University of Aarhus and has since been working as a learning specialist in her position as HR senior manager in the LEGO Learning Center, providing both deep practical and theoretical perspectives. Her core responsibilities lie in leading global activities while building up training organizations and knowledge management activities across LEGO production and engineering functions including a new LEGO factory in China. Additionally, she is developing global LEGO programs like World Class Craftsmanship, with the objective of building up LEGO toolmakers, and Technology Leaders of Tomorrow, both initiatives focused on developing standardized capabilities across cultures and LEGO sites.

John Vellema started his career as a toolmaker in injection molding. This deeply rooted experience working with and understanding life on the shop floor provided him with invaluable experiences that cannot be learned in a classroom. He also served in the Danish Army where his last position was first class sergeant for a recon unit stationed in Kosovo. After leaving the Army, Vellema earned an engineering degree in manufacturing and management from the University of Southern Denmark. He then joined the LEGO Group in 2007 participating in the Supply Chain Graduate Program. In combination with years of coaching teams under the Danish Association of Rowing, this positioned him to become project leader and concept developer over the next three years, beginning in 2009, in the development and implementation of the Global Job Training Organization at LEGO. Through these experiences he has gained a strong understanding of the link between production, leadership, and engineering.

In 2012, John left the LEGO Group to start an advisory and training firm, business through people. The firm’s primary objective is to help companies create and maintain a highly skilled and motivated workforce. Business through people has since become a recognized company supporting businesses and corporations across Europe.


LEGO has been a household name all of my life and I was aware that they had a strong people-focused culture and adopted Lean methods. This book, written with LEGO insiders, is a stunning example of the discipline and commitment needed to develop people as masters of their crafts through the only way people learn—repetitive, deliberate practice.
—Jeffrey K. Liker, Professor, University of Michigan; and Shingo Prize-winning author of The Toyota Way

Few books, if any in the Lean area since the NUMMI era, have gone into such depth on what it takes to integrate and unify across cultures. The book will become a standard guide not only to TWI implementation, but to the wider challenge of cross-functional and cross-cultural integration.
John Bicheno, Founder of MSc in Lean Enterprise at The University of Buckingham

While TWI has made a significant comeback in recent years as the underpinning of the Toyota Production System’s foundation for continuous improvement and standard work, the ability to make it an integrated and sustainable system of developing people with a highly productive capability to solve problems while continually learning has remained elusive to most organizations. The book describes in detail how LEGO achieve this culture through a strategic and deliberate plan to develop and deploy a global system of organizational training using TWI as its foundation.
Jim Huntzinger, President/Founder, Lean Frontiers