LeanBlog Podcast #15 — Jim Huntzinger, “Training Within Industry”

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LeanBlog Podcast #15 is a new discussion with a previous Podcast guest, Jim Huntzinger. Last time, we talked about the Lean Accounting Summit.

This time, we're talking about the renaissance of the “Training Within Industry” program. We'll talk about the origins of this program, the impact it had on Toyota and the Toyota Production System, and why the program is being bought back in the United States and in lean circles.

Jim is also organizing a Training Within Industry Summit, June 5-6 of 2007. Check the Show Notes, down below, for more links to TWI resources and information.

Show Notes and Approximate Time, Episode #15

  • Background: Copies of the original TWI manuals
  • Background: Wikipedia page on TWI
  • 2:30 Background of the TWI program prior to the U.S. entry into WWII
  • 3:15 How did TWI get promoted in Japan during the U.S. occupation?
  • 4:15 How did TWI get incorporated into the Toyota Production System? “It is an excellent industrial training program on its own” but Toyota also built upon the system
  • 6:00 What were some of the motivations behind TWI? What did they hope to achieve?
  • 7:15 What are the different components of the TWI approach… Job Methods and Job Instruction, the focus on training people HOW to train, etc.
  • 9:15 At Toyota, Ohno thought “Job Methods” was a little too “point focused” and he wanted to look more at the “value stream”
  • 9:45 “Job Relations” focuses on how to be a supervisor, how to drive kaizen, etc.
  • 11:00 How did TWI get “rediscovered” recently? Mentioned in the book Becoming Lean: Inside Stories of U.S. Manufacturers
  • 13:45 What are the unique things Toyota was able to do with the TWI program?
  • 14:15 TWI was focused on training NEW employees, how does TWI apply when you have long time employees who never had standard work or standard methods?
  • 15:45 Toyota still uses Job Instruction today for training their experienced people
  • 16:15 TWI says you have to “get the employee motivated to learn” – how do you do this?
  • 17:45 Why did American companies move away from TWI after the war?
  • 19:00 Early challenges with getting management focused on sustaining TWI methods
  • 19:30 To learn more about TWI:
  • Training Within Industry: The Foundation Of Lean (Don Dinero, history of TWI)
  • The Twi Workbook: Essential Skills for Supervisors (Bob Wrona, hos to use TWI today)
  • Jim's article “The Roots of Lean”
  • Plenty of articles and references through Google

If you have feedback on the podcast, or any questions for me or my guests, you can email me at leanpodcast@gmail.com or you can call and leave a voicemail by calling the “Lean Line” at (817) 993-0630 or contact me via Skype id “mgraban”. Please give your location and your first name. Any comments (email or voicemail) might be used in follow ups to the podcast.

Visit the main LeanBlog Podcast page with all previous episodes.


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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. His latest book is Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. He also published the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.

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