Japan Lean Study Tour

Your Lean thinking expedition

19-25 April

You register to the expedition by writing an email to:

Lean by nature

– Immerse yourself in a corporate culture of innovation and continuous improvement

In an ever changing, increasingly globalised and digital world, developing a corporate culture that constantly challenges the status quo is emerging as an optimal path towards creating sustainable advantage.

We believe that Lean is an essential key component in this journey. We believe this despite its unfair reputation as just another set of tools to becoming more effective at the expense of job satisfaction and creativity. Lean is a philosophy. It’s the creation of a culture where innovation, improvement and the welfare of fellow colleagues is part of everybody’s daily work.

The question is: How do we create this culture?

A change of mindset

Where else should we look to answer this question other than Japan – the birthplace of Lean? Japan is home to some remarkable workplaces where we can get a real feel of the cultural changes needed on an organisational level and the behaviour we need to think differently about as individuals.

The Japan Lean Study Tour is a unique opportunity for you to immerse yourself in the very soul of a number of Japanese organisations, all of which excel in Lean. You will benefit from first-hand experience from key employees and executives, and you will experience Lean leadership and Lean culture in action in the midst of their operation.

A privilege to learn and focus for seven days on Lean with other participants across the private and public sectors

Jakob Cold, Vice President of The Danish Medicines Agency

Inspiration and practical takeaways

Each day consists of a visit to one or two of the host companies. A typical outing starts with formal introductions, followed by a tour of the premises and facilities. During the visit, you will have the opportunity to engage with our host’s management team and raise any queries or discuss any learning points you find relevant.

After each company visit, we will explore more aspects of the Lean journey through informal and informative Q&A sessions with our appointed functional experts, who will facilitate our discussion, answer questions and help you translate your learnings into concrete initiatives you can adapt in your own organisation.

After an intensive day, you will have the opportunity to digest your learnings and relax during a number of social events, each specifically designed to offer a distinctive flavour of the unique Japanese culture and to offer you a chance to unwind and broaden your network with the other participants.

An idea of what you will get:
  • Facilitated key takeaways after each visit and group discussions around your learnings
  • Lean senseis who will participate in the entire trip and help translate your learnings into your own Lean initiatives and journey
  • Networking with European peers from across sectors who can give you new perspectives and insights into their Lean transformation
  • A genuine feel of Japan – a unique opportunity to truly dive into a very different, vibrant and inspiring culture with a taste of the local cuisine, history and traditions


Success criteria for our study tour

The overall success criteria of the Japan Lean Study Tour are a better understanding of the key leadership and culture enablers to continuously improve your own organisation.

Takeaway #1
  • Discover what it takes to install a Lean culture where employees recognise their accountability for the processes
  • Explore what it means to be in a Lean culture where leaders support, coach, challenge and drive business performance 
  • Learn how job instructions and job relations are used on a daily basis and how these are the backbone of high-performing teams
  • Discover why a Lean leader spends so much time confirming that people adhere to defined standards 
Takeaway #3
  • Learn how Lean leaders spend time on the shop floor to understand deviations in business performance
  • Explore how Lean leaders support teams in identifying the root cause and invest their own time in eliminating problems on a daily basis 
Takeaway #4
  • Learn how Lean leaders start and end their daily diary on the shop floor in order to ensure optimal support for their people
  • Examine how Lean leaders use different tools to coach and guide their people towards becoming high-performing teams 
Takeaway #5
  • Delve into why a Lean leader considers continuous learning a key component for creating sustainable success
  • Learn why a Lean leader spends most of their time on being proactive and forward-thinking on a daily basis in order to avoid mistakes
There were numerous take-aways, from the classic Kaizen to growth companies with an “above and beyond” people focus as the epicentre for success.

Louise Gaub, Vice President of TDC Group

We call for participants that have a general interest in creating high-performing and competitive organisations as well as a specific interest in service excellence or production excellence.

Practical information


The Study tour begins in Tokyo on 19 April 2020 and ends on 25 April 2020 in Tokyo.

Participants book their own flights and make their own arrangements for travel visa if needed.

All costs for hotels, transportation, meals and company visits during the entire week is covered in the tour price, except for own flight tickets to/from Tokyo.


The investment per participant is:

  • EUR 7,500
  • DKK 56,000
  • NOK 74,000
  • SEK 80,000.

All prices exclude VAT and flights.

Sign up

You sign up by writing an email to Anna Tulinius: acr@implement.dk

Please note that your travel confirmation must be registered by 1 February 2020 as there are only a limited number of spots available for this trip.

Any cancellations made after this date will be non-refundable.


The typical participants are:

  • Chief Executive Officer
  • Chief Operating Officer
  • Chief Product Officer
  • Vice Presidents
  • Head of Continuous Improvement
  • Lean Manager