1st Edition

The Toyota Way of Dantotsu Radical Quality Improvement

By Sadao Nomura Copyright 2021
    286 Pages
    by Productivity Press

    286 Pages
    by Productivity Press

    In this book, author Sadao Nomura taps into his decades of experience leading and advising Toyota operations in a wide variety of operations to tell the story of radical improvement at Toyota Logistics & Forklift (TL&F).

    This book tells in great detail what the author did with TL&F, how they did it, and the dramatic results that ensued. TL&F has long been a global leader in its industry. TL&F is part of Toyota Industries Corporation, which was founded by Toyota Group founder Sakichi Toyoda almost 100 years ago. Sakichi Toyoda is legendary in the Lean community as the originator of the all-important "JIDOKA" pillar of TPS, which ensures 1) built-in quality and 2) respect for people through ensuring that technology works for people rather than the other way around. Although TL&F seemed to be performing well, insiders knew that, as the founding company of the Toyota group, it needed to do better, especially in the quality performance of its global subsidiary operations. But improvement would not be easy in a company that already prided itself in its history as an exemplar in providing highest quality products and services.

    In 2006, TL&F requested assistance from Sadao Nomura. The initial request was for Mr. Nomura to support quality improvement in three global operations that had become part of TL&F through acquisition: US, Sweden, and France. Improvement was expected at these affiliates, but the dramatic nature of the improvement was not. Further, the improvement activities were so powerful that they were also instituted at the parent operations in Japan. Over a period of almost ten years, the company with the name most associated with product quality experienced quality improvement unparalleled in its history. "Dantotsu" means "extreme," "radical," or "unparalleled."

    Chapter 1: Setting Concrete Targets to Achieve Zero Defects

    Chapter 2. Visualization of Defects

    Chapter 3. 8-Step Procedure for Quality Defect Recurrence Prevention

    Chapter 4. Standardization of Work

    Chapter 5. Standardization of Material Handling.

    Chapter 6. Standardization of Quality Check Related Items

    Chapter 7. Human Development -- Education and Training

    Chapter 8.Weak-Point Management (WPM)

    Chapter 9. Reduction of In-Process efects

    Chapter 10. Change-Point Control

    Chapter 11.2S (Seiri and Seiton)

    Chapter 12. Stabilization of Production Line

    Chapter 13. Claim Asaichi

    Chapter 14. Quality Improvement of New Model Design and Production Preparation

    Chapter 15. QC Circle-Based Teamwork

    Chapter 16. Looking Back at Dantotsu Quality Activities


    Sadao Nomura joined Toyota Motor Corporation in Japan in 1965. In his career, Nomura experienced a wider-then-usual variety of responsibilities from manufacturing to quality assurance to support for suppliers and global operations. He held a variety of roles in the Body Department of Motomachi Plant and became general manager of that department in 1993. While at Motomachi, Nomura-sensei promoted development of key quality and productivity performance improvement processes that led to best-ever new vehicle launch performance with full-scale production volume stability attained in the first month of production for Toyota’s best-selling 6th generation Mark II (AKA the Cressida) mid-size passenger car. In addition, he served as a quality improvement trainer for 13.5 years at Toyota factories in Indonesia, Australia and South Africa. Then he was president of TECHNOL EIGHT Co., Ltd. from 2002 to 2006. From 2006 to 2014, Nomura led the “Dantotsu Quality Activities” as a senior advisor for the Industrial Vehicle Division of Toyota Industries (AKA Toyota Logistics & Forklift).

    "I strongly recommend you consider the "Nomura Method" to help you implement TPS. It has allowed our organization to rise to new levels of lean management expertise, from the plant floor to the back office, including optimizing our distribution companies and even helping our suppliers and customers to do the same. We are living proof that an organization can reinvent itself using this method, even as we approach our 100 year anniversary!

    Some results we achieved in our journey (so far) are:

    • The Raymond Team achieved a defect reduction from a baseline average in 2006 of 1.23 defects per unit down to 0.0036 defects per unit in November of 2019
    • In one Raymond facility we increased production from 4,000 units shipped in 2008 to 22,000 units shipped in 2019 within the same MFG square footage (450% increase), optimizing before we automate
    • Our Raymond associates have generated over 100,000 kaizen suggestions from the inception of the Kaizen program in 2007
    • The Raymond Greene Plant received the 2015 Toyota Industries President’s Award in recognition of our exceptional achievements and contribution toward the Global TOSO Paint Improvement Project activity"

    Michael Field, President and CEO, The Raymond Corporation