The Toyota trip was truly an experience that brought everything we learn in classes to life. This journey started from the time all the students got onto the bus, when Krannert students shared their previous experiences in other companies and how we all developed new friendships that we otherwise wouldn’t get. As soon as we drove into Toyota and saw the sign, everyone got excited and we were all eager to walk in. First, we got the chance to learn about the history of “Toyoda,” how it came about, why it developed, the vision the founder had, and how the Toyota’s philosophy and practices are embedded in the culture. The plant tour is what brought a feeling of rush when we traveled from the start to the end of the assembly line and observed the variety of processes. What really was an eye opener is the vast effort the company stresses on quality and KAIZEN “continuous improvements.” Finally, we had the opportunity to speak with talented employees from the Production Planning Manager to the Supply Chain Manager and many other to get an idea of how the Toyota philosophy of just-in-time affects/improves the everyday decisions of production. For me, because it was my first time entering into a production plant, and Toyota being the first, it really gave me the motivation and helped me redefine my image of operations and how it can become part of my long term future. I want to thank the operation’s club board for giving us an unforgettable experience and Indea Snorden for guiding us throughout the trip.
MS Global Supply Chain Management 2013