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Understanding A3 Thinking
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Table of Contents

Introduction

A Basis for Managerial Effectiveness
PDCA: Heart of the Toyota Way
What Don't We Get?
A System to Support PDCA Management

3A Thinking
Seven Elements of 3A Thinking
Element 1 : Logical Thinking Process
Element 2: Objectivity
Element 3: Results and Process
Element 4: Synthesis, Distillation, and Visualization
Element 5: Alignment
Element 6: Coherency within and Consistency Across
Element 7: Systems Viewpoint
Practical Problem Solving
Grasping the Current Situation
Identifying the Root Cause
Devising Countermeasures and Visualizing the Future State
Creating an Implementation Plan
Creating a Follow-up Plan
Discussing with Affected Parties
Obtaining Approval
Executing the Implementation and Follow-up Plans

The Problem-Solving 3A Report
Storyline of the Problem-Solving 3A
Theme
Background
Current Condition and Problem Statement
Goal Statement
Root-Cause Analysis
Countermeasures
Check/Confirmation of Effect
Follow-up Actions
Total Effect
Reviewing Problem-solving 3As
Your Turn
Part : Write an 3A
Part : Critique Your 3A

The Proposal 3A Report
Storyline of the Proposal 3A
Theme
Background
Current Condition
Analysis and Proposal
Plan Details
Unresolved Issues (Optional)
Implementation Schedule
Total Effect
Proposal 3A Example
Proposal 3A Example
Reviewing Proposal 3As
Discuss with Peer Group or Advisor
Discuss with Affected Parties
Obtain Approval
Your Turn
Part : Write a Proposal 3A
Part : Review Your 3A

The Status 3A Report
Storyline of the Status 3A
Theme
Background
Current Condition
Results
Unresolved Issues/Follow-up Actions
Total Effect
Status 3A Example
Discuss with a Peer Group or Advisor
Your Turn

Notes on Form and Style
Form
Style
Graphics
Understand Your Data
Use the Best Graph for the Data
Label Properly
Use as Little Ink as Possible
Let the Graphic Talk
Tables

Supporting Structures
Standard Templates
Where to Start
Handwritten versus Computer-Generated 3As
Coaching
Approval
Storage and Retrieval

Conclusion
PDCA and Managerial Effectiveness
3A Thinking
Three Main Types
Form and Style
Final Advice

About the Authors

Appendix A: "Reducing Bill Drop Time" Problem-Solving 3A Report
Appendix B: "Practical Problem Solving" Proposal 3A Report

Each chapter concludes with a Summary & Endnotes

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