PailPac logoThe Best Practice Workshop with Japanese sensei, Mr Furuhashi, was hosted by PailPac, a leading open-top plastic packaging manufacturing specialist in South Africa.

Best Practice Workshop summary: The primary objective of the workshop was to train participants in a practical way to improve processes in a short period of time, over five days (2-6 November 2015). The workshop does this by transferring shop floor best practices from Japan to South Africa and exposing participants to Kaizen or Kaikaku projects (continuous improvement projects). Mr Furuhashi has over 35 years’ experience of training companies in the Toyota Production System. These workshop takes place at a host company and working site. The approach is strictly one of ‘learning by doing’ in a hands-on manner.

If you are interested in hosting a Best Practice Workshop similar to this, please email

This is a collaborative project involving Lean Institute Africa and Mr Furuhashi from ChuSanRen (Central Japan Industries Association), Japan.

Since January 1996 Prof Norman Faull has organised Best Practice workshops in South Africa, with thirteen taking place in factories, two in hospitals, and one at a mine. These have been conducted by Mr Takeyuki Furuhashi of ChuSanRen, Nagoya, Japan.

Workshop facilitatorFuruhashi
Mr Furuhashi led the Best Practice Workshop at PailPac in Durban. It was his 18th visit to South Africa, and as usual he brought with him a wealth of knowledge and experience. For more information on Mr Furuhashi, please click here.

Workshop preparation
LIA, in conjunction with the host organisation’s management, assists in the selection of the projects and the setting of improvement objectives. Four to six projects are identified in advance of Mr Furuhashi’s visit.

There should ideally be 4 teams of 6 participants working on four on-site projects. The documented core methodology is distributed at the workshop. LIA facilitators will assist Mr Furuhashi in conducting the workshop.

Workshop structure
Mr Furuhashi usually arrives a few days prior to the start of the workshop to familiarise himself with the site, the projects and the team structures.

The workshop runs over 5 days as follows:
Monday – Lectures by Mr Furuhashi, introduction of projects and their objectives.
Tuesday to Thursday – Project work with on-site oversight by Mr Furuhashi and LIA facilitators.
Friday – Presentation of project results to senior management by project teams.

Workshop dates
2 – 6 November 2015

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These are photographs of Mr Furuhashi (left and centre) and the participants at a previous Best Practice Workshop.