Isao Yoshino & Katie Anderson on Mistakes, Leadership, Learning, and Culture

Isao Yoshino & Katie Anderson on Mistakes, Leadership, Learning, and Culture

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Joining me for Episode #30 of “the My Favorite Mistake” podcast is Katie Anderson, the author of the book Learning to Lead, Leading to Learn: Lessons from Toyota Leader Isao Yoshino on a Lifetime of Continuous Learning. We are also joined by Mr. Yoshino, the subject of the book, who joined us from Japan. You can download a sample chapter via Katie's website.

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I get the very unique opportunity to ask each of them about their “favorite mistake.” Mr. Yoshino tells a story from his early days at Toyota, where he learned the importance of not blaming individuals for systemic problems. He later retired from Toyota after nearly 40 years of work in Japan and the United States.

Katie then tells a story, from early in her career, about being a “bull in a china shop” during meetings and getting feedback that caused her to reflect and change.

We then talk about lessons from Toyota and their book, including the importance of creating a culture where it's safe for people to speak up about mistakes — either in a factory or in a hospital. Why is it important for leaders to create the conditions for people to be successful? Why should leaders take responsibility when mistakes happen? Why is intentional reflection the key to learning?

I think you'll enjoy the conversation, as I did.

You can listen to or watch the episode below. A transcript also follows lower on this page.

Podcast Audio:

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Video Podcast:

Book Giveaway!


"[They could] easily blame me for the big mistake, but they didn't. So what is the thinking behind this? It is because they want to solve the problem because we are not perfect."

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Automated Transcript (May Contain Mistakes)

Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. His latest book is Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. He also published the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus. He is also a Senior Advisor and Director of Strategic Marketing with the healthcare advisory firm, Value Capture.