21 · Obeya
1. GEMBA WALK STAGE
After the Gemba Walk
2. BRIEF DESCRIPTION
Obeya is a Japanese term for ‘War Room’ or ‘Large Room’ and refers to a dedicated physical space where the core cross-functional team meets regularly to discuss the project advancements and drawbacks and plan the upcoming tasks. Obeya is often used for quick problem-solving and brainstorming sessions. Virtual versions of Obeya also exist for globally distributed teams.
3. HOW TO USE OBEYA IN THE GEMBA WALK
The Obeya room is a common lean practice that can greatly support leadership Gemba Walks, by providing a ‘one-stop-shop’ space, where leaders meet before and after Gemba Walks to update, track and monitor the current status, improvement initiatives, employee engagement and other key factors and KPIs. This room is also used to solve problems and collaborate, since the entire cross-functional leadership team with all key stakeholders are in one space.
4. ROLES AND ACTIVITIES
Leader: Supports Obeya creation and dedicates resources, monitors and tracks KPIs, improvement initiatives, team availability, etc.
Facilitator: Helps to set up the Obeya, facilitates any changes to the Obeya room, provides coaching, training and support to leaders and members
Team member: Leads daily standup sessions in the Obeya, proposes improvement activities
5. EXPECTED BENEFITS FOR THE GEMBA WALK
Creates a real-time collaborative problem-solving environment
Ensures team alignment, project and process transparency
Reduces the number of meetings
Helps achieve better team alignment
6. ORGANIZATIONS WITH AN OBEYA ROOM
Airbus Defence and Space, Barry Callebaut and IMC