Let’s Try a "5 Whys" Survey


Following up on the LEI survey that was released and discussed here, I've been talking with a few folks offline about what the “root causes” really are for Lean struggles. Instead of pointing at “who?” what would we find if we asked “Why?” And then asked “Why?” again. Let's utilize one of the Toyota Production System problem solving methodologies, the “5 Whys?”

So, an online survey is cheap and easy to set up. Let's give this a try. It's an experiment, in the spirit of PDCA. I'm not sure if this problem really lends itself to 5 Whys, because as blog reader Ralf pointed out, this is a complex business and organizational problem. It might not lend itself to an online survey, since I'm used to doing this in person and interactive.

Click Here to Take Survey (survey is closed)

Those who take the survey and leave an email address (which will not be sold or distributed), we are going to do a few Lean giveways, including a donated copy of “Workplace Management”, given by our friends at Gemba Research. I'll publish the results here and will email them out to those who leave an email address.

What do you think? Please scroll down (or click) to post a comment. Or please share the post with your thoughts on LinkedIn – and follow me or connect with me there.

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Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


  1. […] by Mark Graban on January 1, 2007 · 4 comments Thanks again for trying our “5 Whys” Survey. I hope you’ll come back to the Lean Blog and our community here. If you left your email address, you will be entered in the drawing for the prizes listed below. You’ll also receive the survey results via email. If you want to go back and enter your email, you should be able to follow the “back” link or go back to the survey here. […]


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