A KATA school is a central source of information, resources, networking, and support for people who are practicing the Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata or are interested in them. You can bring resources into a KATA school, and you can take resources out of a KATA school. The goal is to help humans everywhere practice more scientific ways of thinking and acting, thereby developing ourselves and our community toward the best we can imagine and beyond.
To support the practice of Toyota Kata to improve; ourselves, our businesses, schools, hospitals, non-profit’s, local authorities, communities and even countries by unleashing innovation, developing professionally and personally through scientific thinking, encouraging motivation in our workplaces and doing it all in a way that is sustainable.
Throughout Australasia the Improvement and Coaching Kata’s are being used daily to realise the full potential of our people, our organisations, our communities and our country.
What is Kata?
The KATA is a process of conscious practice to develop a scientific way of thinking and acting . It helps to better address the challenges of the 21st century, such as rapid change and increasing uncertainty and complexity. The Kata were codified by Mike Rother of the university of Michigan from observing the culture of continuous improvement at Toyota and have since been adapted to become common around the world in service companies, hospitals, local authorities and schools as well as the traditional manufacturing.
KATA is the Japanese term for a training routine. A KATA makes it possible to gradually learn a new, desired approach and to make it an intuitive habit through regular repetition. We know this concept from many areas. In sports, a complex sequence of movements is broken down into a sequence of individual steps in order to make it learnable. In music, we approach a new piece of music often bar by bar, sometimes even note by note. We learn to dance step by step and a cooking recipe is in this sense a KATA. Furthermore, we differentiate between the improvement KATA and the coaching KATA.
The Improvement KATA is a practical, four-level science pattern that learners follow to experiment their way through obstacles and achieve challenging goals.
The coaching KATA is a pattern for teaching the improvement KATA. It helps the coach to understand how the learner currently thinks and how to give him effective feedback in the daily interactions (coaching cycles).
For each KATA Upgrade step, there are small, specific exercise routines that we call Starter KATA. This will allow beginners to gain access to developing new skills and changing their attitudes (see Figure given below).
What is Kata school?
A KATA School gives all those who are interested in the practice of Improvement Kata / Coaching Kata a home, so we can achieve greater things by working together. The Improvement Kata is a process of deliberate practice to develop scientific thinking.
The KATA School Manifesto
We can’t see into the Future, and that’s OK
Although we can’t predict exactly what the path to our goals will be, we can practice an effective way of working toward them.
Scientific Thinking as a Life Skill
Scientific thinking may be the most effective means currently known for navigating through unpredictable and complex territory toward our goals, because it makes us more adaptive and creative in the face of uncertainty. Scientific thinking helps us to avoid being fooled by our perceptions.
Scientific thinking involves continuous curiosity about a complex world we can’t control or predict, and drives us to want to take the next step to understand a little better. In short, scientific thinking is a comparison between what we predict will happen next, seeing what actually happens, and adjusting based on what we learn from the difference.
Anyone can learn Scientific Thinking, through Practice
We believe that anyone who wants to learn, and is willing to practice, has the capability to develop scientific thinking skills. We can all acquire scientific thinking skills by combining a pattern of scientific thinking with routines of deliberate practice. We change habits by practicing a new way, which, in time, replaces the old way.
The Improvement Kata is a practical, four-step pattern of scientific thinking. Each step has structured practice routines, called Starter Kata, to help individuals, teams, and organizations internalize and operationalize the pattern. The Coaching Kata is a set of Starter Kata for teaching the Improvement Kata pattern.
Practicing Starter Kata helps us begin developing new habits of thinking and acting. They are a starting point, and practicing them should not mean becoming rigid, but rather set you on a new path.
A KATA School as a Centre for Resources
A KATA school is a centre and source of information, resources, networking, and support for people who are practicing the Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata or are interested in them. You can bring resources into a KATA school, and you can take resources out of a KATA school. The goal is to help humans everywhere practice more scientific ways of thinking and acting, thereby developing ourselves and our community toward the best we can imagine and beyond.
Anyone can be part of a KATA school.
Anyone can organize a KATA school, as long as they are willing to take on the responsibility. The only formal requirement is to adopt and publish this manifesto.
The KATA school Commitment
A KATA school brings together a diverse community of associates from various entities.
Share with others the lessons and experiences you are gaining. Try to give back when you take, to help build up your KATA school. And support other KATA schools too.
Content presented and shared through a KATA school should follow the spirit of The Kata Code:
1. Conditions are unpredictable.
2. Enjoy the learning zone.
3. Understand the direction, grasp the current condition, establish a target condition, experiment toward the target condition.
4. Beginners practice Starter Kata exactly.
5. Be a coach, have a coach.
A KATA school is free to make its own profits. Profits don’t need to be transferred to other organizations and can go toward covering the operational cost of your KATA school and growing your KATA school.