Having been part of different Japan study trips in the past, I can tell you that learning about lean at the source is a unique experience. The closer you get to the origin, the clearer you can see and understand the original purpose for each technique.
The Japan EDM is hosted by Honsha, a network of former Toyota team members. Honsha’s missions to Japan include executives and practitioners from a variety of industries, ranging from healthcare to airport operations to manufacturing and many others.
Darril Wilburn and Sammy Obara will be leading the study trip. (At least at the host companies. I'll be leading the trip at the bars and izakayas.) I’ve had the privilege to work with both of them many times — not only are they incredible lean practitioners, they're seriously nice guys (which is good, since we’ll be together for a week). My friend and colleague Mark Graban, lean healthcare expert and Japanese whisky aficionado, will also be on the trip as a speaker and facilitator.
You can find additional information, along with a sample itinerary, on the mission website.
Let me know if you’d be interested in joining us. October is a beautiful season in Japan, and it would be great to spend some time with you in Japan learning more about lean.