Honda of America has a comprehensive approach to teaching the principles of lean production to its suppliers, where Honda and the supplier work intensively on narrowly targeted projects to improve in the provider system. Developed Called BP (for “Best Process”, “Best Performance”, “Best Practice”), this approach has been quite successful in improving the performance of suppliers; revised participating suppliers in the program in 1994 averaged productivity gains of 50% on the lines BP. However … Read more »

Honda of America has a comprehensive approach to teaching the principles of lean production to its suppliers, where Honda and the supplier work intensively on narrowly targeted projects to improve in the provider system. Developed Called BP (for “Best Process”, “Best Performance”, “Best Practice”), this approach has been quite successful in improving the performance of suppliers; revised participating suppliers in the program in 1994 averaged productivity gains of 50% on the lines BP. However, Honda has before there is a high variation in the extent to which suppliers were able to transfer the lessons learned over the line or plant where the BP intervention occurred. Based on case studies of three Honda’s U.S. suppliers this article analyzes how the BP process with the general relations between customers and suppliers in terms of organizational learning, technology transfer and transplantation of Japanese management practices in the United States interacts. These cases illustrate the dynamics of the learning process and the complex relationship between the “teacher” (Seller) valuable knowledge and the “student” (receiver) outlet.
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from
John Paul MacDuffie,
Susan Helper
Source: California Management Review
35 pages.
Release Date: 1 July 1997. Prod #: CMR090-PDF-ENG
Creating lean suppliers: Diffusing lean production through the supply chain HBR case solution