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Jamie Common 2987 Assessment Task 1: Case Study: Leyland Trucks: Continuous Improvement Within an Organisation 1. What is Kaizen? Why Leyland has implemented a practice Continuous Improvement? Kaizen is a Japanese principle. The term ‘kaizen’ means continuous improvement. It comes from the words ‘Kai’ – continuous and ‘Zen’ – good or for the better. Leyland Trucks use the term ‘Kaizen event’ for any action that is an improvement to an existing process. Kaizen events usually involve bringing together operators, managers and the owners of a particular event to discuss possible improvements. There are a number of major reasons why Leyland Trucks practices continuous improvement: To meet the productions and sales growth plans. To meet customer demands for more reliable trucks. To stay ahead of the competition. For example, there is always a risk that rival manufacturers, e.g. in China and other European countries, might merge (this happens when two companies join together). This could lead to a threat from these bigger competitors. To offset rising labour costs. Wage costs rise every year. Leyland is not able to raise prices because of competition, so any increase in wages has to be compensated for by more efficient production.

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