For decades, Toyota has been setting standards that are the envy—and goal—of organizations worldwide. Its legendary management principles and business philosophy, first documented by Jeffrey K. Liker in his influential book The Toyota Way, changed the business world’s approach to operational excellence.
Granted unprecedented access toToyota’s facilities worldwide, Liker, along with Timothy N. Ogden, investigated the inside story of how Toyota faced the challenges of the recession and the recall crisis of 2009–2010. In both cases, the company was caught off guard—and found that a root cause of the challenges it faced was its failure to live up to its own principles. But the fundamentals were still there, and the company has ultimately come out of the most challenging years of its postwar existence even stronger than before.
Toyota Under Fire chronicles all the events of the recession and the recall crisis in detail, providing valuable lessons any business leader can use to survive and thrive in a crisis, no matter how large:
- Crisis response must start by building a strong culture long before the crisis hits.
- Culture matters far more than decisions made by top executives.
- Investing in people, even in the depths of a recession, is the surest path to long-term profitability.
Because it had founded its culture on such principles, Toyota didn’t need to amass an army of public relations, marketing, and legal experts to “put out the fire”; instead, it redoubled efforts to live up to its founding tenet, going “back to basics. “Toyota began solving this crisis more than 70 years ago, when its organizational culture was first established.
Apply the lessons of Toyota Under Fire to your company, and you’ll meet any future management challenge calmly, responsibly, and effectively—the Toyota Way.
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You can find this title at IESE’s Library catalog.