Shingijutsu has been, for many years, the top brand in TPS consulting. Their early history is described in Lean Thinking by Womack and Jones.

The name roughly translates to:
shin: new
gijutsu: skills, technique, technology

It is pronounced “shin ge jutsu” with a hard “g” as in “go”
It is commonly MISpronounced “shinjejitsu” with a soft G as in “giraffe.”

The company was originally started by members of Taiichi Ohno’s “Autonomous Study Group.” The heavy hitters at the beginning were Iwata-san, Nakao-san and Niwa-san.

By the time I was dealing with them in the mid- and late- 1990’s, it was obvious the company had factions aligned with Iwata and Nakao. When Iwata died in early 2000, Nakao became the Chairman. They underwent some reorganizations. Ultimately, though, the differences split the company into two.

Today there are two Japanese companies doing business under the name “Shingijutsu.”
Niwa and the “Iwata consultants” are operating under the name “Shingijutsu Global Consulting.” Their web site is here. Based on 2nd hand accounts (but from people I know and trust), their Japan seminar product is good.

Nakao and his team have the original web site as well as one called Shingijutsu-USA.
Based on my recent experience, and reports from others, while their on-site consulting is quite good, I experienced a deterioration in the quality of their seminar over years past. A series of daily posts written during my experience in November 2007 is here.

If you are considering sending people to Japan for a kaizen seminar or a study mission, I have three items of advice.

  1. Prepare beforehand. See my post on the subject.
  2. Consult with others who have attended recently on the quality of the experience.
  3. Don’t overlook alternatives.

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