What is Gemba Walk?
Gemba (現場) is the Japanese term for “actual place” often used in business to identify the place where the value is created. This term is used to stress that improvements require direct observation of current conditions where work is done.
A Gemba Walk refers to the action of ‘going to the Gemba’ to establish self-development and continuous improvement by leveraging the three organizational perspectives of culture, people and process. Gemba Walks foster interactions and communication among value stream stakeholders, allowing leaders to support, coach, reward, and engage employees in a collaborative and constructive problem-solving process which aligns the decision-making and value creation processes. It is established method to train and develop the capabilities of leaders and foster a growth mindset among all employees.
Dare to Gemba Walk Methodology
The DARE2GEMBA methodology is the result of a two-year collaborative research project, gathering direct insights from Gemba-based learning experiences across nine companies located in Europe and the American continent; together with a survey responded by 60 organizations from 18 different industries around the world.
Our four-step methodology aims to enable any team, leader and organization to kick-off and sustain Gemba walk practice. It is based on a human-centered approach, empathizing as a starting point with customers, employees and leaders to understand their problems, feelings and ideas to discover improvement opportunities. It also proposes to assess the lean practices and behaviors aligned to the Shingo Model principles to ensure it becomes a routine towards operational excellence.
The DARE2GEMBA Methodology also supports the definition of a Gemba Walk process and the development of a roadmap for its successful launch. Last but not least, the methodology also provides a detailed guideline to execute the Gemba Walks, including roles, responsibilities and the different activities to be carried out before, during and after the Gemba Walks to nourish a continuous improvement culture.
Empathize with the customers, employees and leaders to identify their key pain points and feelings uncovering the most frequent problems and improvement opportunities.
Inspire the organization towards a continuous improvement culture, collaboratively defining the value proposition to implement Gemba walks.
Set up and launch the process to carry out the Gemba walks on an ongoing basis for collaborative problem solving.
Identify the gaps by assessing the behaviours required for continuous improvement aligned to the Shingo principles and the lean practices that enable the Gemba walk implementation.
Collaboratively and visually build a high-impact implementation roadmap and business case to get the organization and teams buy-in and get ready to kick-off the Gemba walks.