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Lean Enterprise

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Lean Enterprise

How High Performance Organizations Innovate at Scale


15 min. de leitura
8 Ideias Fundamentais
Áudio & Texto

Sobre o que é?

Getting lean is a long, challenging road.

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  • Concrete Examples
  • For Experts
  • Insider's Take


Businesses everywhere have attempted to mimic the innovative cultures of Apple, Amazon and Toyota, but most fail. This study by innovation experts Jez Humble, Joanne Molesky and Barry O’Reilly aims to demystify how the best organizations got to the top and stayed there. The authors explain a variety of Running Lean strategies that commercial giants deploy successfully. To their credit, they don’t promise that innovation is easy, nor do they pretend that a one-size-fits-all solution will fix a company’s problems. Instead, they break down experienced companies’ victories and defeats and detail actionable steps you can apply to your organization.


Efficient, innovative operations nurture employee autonomy.

In the 1980s, General Motors and Toyota formed a partnership to open a joint manufacturing plant in California. GM’s California plants had suffered from poor product quality and strained labor relations. When GM closed its Fremont, California plant in 1982, for example, workers were openly drinking alcoholic beverages in the factory. When the plant reopened in 1984 under the Toyota Production System (TPS), it quickly transformed into an outperforming plant that produced top quality cars.

One of GM’s major shifts was embracing how Toyota viewed workers’ roles. Under GM’s approach at that time, workers were cogs in the machine. They performed one task over and over until they gained sufficient seniority to attain a better position.

Toyota’s approach was markedly different. Its strategy prized individual autonomy, and workers learned a variety of roles. Under TPS, if a worker spotted a problem, production halted until workers and managers resolved the issue. GM, on the other hand, prioritized production over quality, so managers had incentives not to address problems. Production lines kept...

About the Authors

Jez Humble, the co-author of Continuous Delivery: Reliable Software Releases Through Build, Test, and Deployment Automation, is a site reliability engineer at Google. Joanne Molesky retired in 2019. Barry O’Reilly, who hosts the podcast Unlearn, also wrote Unlearn: Let Go of Past Success to Achieve Extraordinary Results.

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