The Toyota Way to Service Excellence

< Back to shop


Lean Transformation in Service Organisations


ISBN: 978-1259641107

Published: August 2016

Author: Jeffery K. Liker, Karyn Ross

Pages: 448

Publisher: McGraw Hill



The world’s bestselling Lean expert shows service-based organizations how to go Lean, gain value, and get results—The Toyota Way.

A must-read for service professionals of every level, this groundbreaking guide by Jeffrey Liker takes the proven Lean principles of his bestselling Toyota Way series and applies them directly to the industries where quality of service is crucial for success. Liker’s famous 4P model makes it easy for you to implement Lean practices throughout your organization—whether you’re an executive, manager, or frontline worker who deals with customers every day.

These ground-tested techniques are designed to help you make continuous improvements in your services, streamline your operations, and add ever-increasing value to your customers. The book features fascinating case studies of Lean-driven success in a range of service industries, including healthcare, insurance, financial services, telecommunications, and more.

Jeffrey K. Liker is Professor of Industrial and Operations Engineering, University of Michigan, and President of Liker Lean Advisors, LLC. He is the author of The Toyota Way and other related books.

Karyn Ross is a lean consultant and executive coach with a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt from Rochester Institute of Technology.


Prologue: The Toyota Way as a General Management Philosophy

  • The Problem: Misunderstanding of Lean and “How It Applies Here”
  • The Toyoda Family: Generations of Consistent Leadership
  • What is Lean?
  • The Toyota Way: A Philosophy and Way of Thinking
  • Learning the Thinking of the Toyota Way Has No Recipe
  • Key Points

Chapter 1: What is Service Excellence?

  • Do we Need Lean in Services?
  • Two Customer Service Stories
  • What is a Service Organization and How Do We Define Excellence?
  • How do Service and Manufacturing Organizations Differ?
  • Does Service Excellence Matter?
  • The Toyota Way to Service Excellence
  • Key Points

Chapter 2: The Toyota Way Continues to Evolve

  • Introduction
  • Developing Toyota Leaders as Coaches: Three Waves
  • Toyota Way in Sales and Marketing
  • Liker’s Toyota Way 4P Model Adapted for Service Organizations
  • Toyota as a Model for Long-Term Success
  • Key Points

Chapter 3: Principle 1: Philosophy of Long-Term Systems Thinking

  • Philosophy is the Moral Compass of the Organization
  • The Limitations of Machine Thinking
  • The New Age of Organizations as Living Systems
  • Systems Thinking for High Performance Organizations
  • Purpose-Driven Organizations
  • South West Airlines Compelling Mission: What They Will and Will Not Do
  • A Summary of Machine versus Systems Philosophy
  • The Challenge of Changing Philosophy
  • Philosophy is the Foundation
  • Key Points

Chapter 4: Developing Lean Processes: A Short Story

  • How Do We Create Lean Processes?
  • The Need for Change at NL Services, Inc.
  • Understanding and Encouraging Leadership Vision
  • Grasping the Situation
  • Understanding the Current State
  • Identify Gaps and Prioritize
  • Strive for Future State Through Small Cycles of Learning
  • What Happens after the Early Experiments?
  • Reflection on Developing Lean Processes
  • Key Points

Chapter 5: Macro-Process Principles: Create a Cadence of High Value Flowing to Customers

  • What is the Value of Lean Process Principles?
  • Principle 2: Deep Understanding of Customer Needs
  • Principle 3: Strive for One-Piece Flow Without Stagnation
  • Principle 4: Level Work Patterns to be Like a Tortoise
  • Principle 5: Respond to Customer Pull
  • Use PDCA to Improve Processes to Achieve Desired Outcomes

Key Points

  • Chapter 6: Micro-Process Principles: Make Work Patterns Visible for Continuous Improvement
  • Micro-Process Principles
  • Principle 6: Stable Work Patterns Continually Adapting
  • Principle 7: Manage Visually to See Actual vs Standard
  • Principle 8: Build in Quality at each Step

Additional information

Weight 0.75 kg

McGraw Hill