Everyone has the ability to improve a little bit each day; we call it continuous improvement. The Japanese’s anticipation led to the introduction of a concept called kaizen, and they paved a lane of successful milestones.
The concept of kaizen was introduced to bring small and consistent improvements every day. These eventually culminate into a bigger and substantial goal. In Kaizen, there’s no ultimate goal because every day is about improving and moving towards a better business scenario. This is why people say no process is improved and there is always room for improvement.
Kaizen in Business
In business, we set short and long-term goals in terms of sales, clients and other such processes. Apparently, in such cases, an entrepreneur’s expectation to acquire immediate results is unreasonable. We know what they say ‘success has no shortcut.’ But this situation is entirely different for a lean thinker. A lean thinker would take up the kaizen approach and start taking smaller steps with each passing day.
They are always a step ahead and know how exactly kaizen would fit in a certain process. Although it fits in every kind of process, it’s up to an individual how he manipulates this approach to get ample benefits out of it.
For instance, for a freelancer, the first approach would be to gather as many projects as possible, but a kaizen leader would measure his potential first and see if he can even handle those many projects at a time. A gradual increase in the number of projects and hitting one milestone at a time are both safer bets.
Kaizen in Our Daily Lives
For personal development, we usually set a timeline and aim to achieve personal goals. These goals can be healthy food habits, losing weight or gaining weight. It is undoubtedly a good practice to set goals, but setting an unrealistic timeline is where a lean leader would tell you to stop. At this point, they would take a step back and rethink the goals. For example, if your goal is to lose weight, starting from eating healthy would be a good start rather than instantly hitting the gym the very first day.
Whoever said that a continuous improvement methodology is not suitable for anything other than business hasn’t yet tasted the real bite of kaizen.