Helping others develop the problem-solving capability required for implementing lean tools and principles and building a company culture of continuous performance improvement.

In lean management, the coach avoids telling coachees what to do because it robs them of the opportunity to think the problem through for themselves; it deprives them of ownership of the problem; and the coach realizes he or she seldom knows as much about the situation as the problem owner. 

The coach’s role is to use open questioning to help the coachee become more aware of what he or she knows and needs to know. The coach prompts the person being coached to consider if his or her ideas and impressions are based on fact.

Techniques that support a lean management approach to coaching include:

  • Applying the scientific method of plan-do-check-act (PDCA) to a coaching cycle.
  • Using questions to help the person being coached grasp the situation around the problem.
  • Assessing the coachee’s problem-solving capability without taking over the responsibility for solving the problem.
  • Observing and providing feedback without interpretation.