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Lean Thinking
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About the Author

James P. Womack is Principal Research Scientist in the Japan Programme at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a member of the Transitions Group, a consulting firm based in the USA. Daniel T. Jones is a Professor at the Cardiff Business School and has acted as consultant to a wide and international range of companies operating in Europe. He lives in Hereford. James P. Womack is Principal Research Scientist in the Japan Programme at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a member of the Transitions Group, a consulting firm based in the USA. Daniel T. Jones is a Professor at the Cardiff Business School and has acted as consultant to a wide and international range of companies operating in Europe. He lives in Hereford.

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There's a missionary zeal to this book for corporate managers: it wants to convert companies the world over to the streamlined production process pioneered by Toyota after WWII. Womack and Jones chronicled Toyota's concept of lean production in The Machine That Changed the World, and embarked in 1990 on a tour of North America, Europe and Japan to persuade organizations, managers, employers and investors that mass production was out of date and should be chucked for something better. They formed a network of companies and individuals dedicated to lean production. Network members, whose stories form the basis of the book, gather annually to update procedures and refine theory. Showa Manufacturing, a Japanese maker of radiators and boilers, for instance, pulled itself out of an earnings slump by changing from mass-producing batches of standardized equipment to producing customized small lots. Heavily laden with details, this is for specialists who want to streamline. It makes few references to the larger, global economy. Author tour. (Sept.)

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