Recently, James Surowiecki wrote here about Toyota and their consistent march to the top in the car industry.

There’s one paragraph that really stands out as important to absorb:

According to Matthew May, the author of a book about the company called “The Elegant Solution,” Toyota implements a million new ideas a year, and most of them come from ordinary workers. (Japanese companies get a hundred times as many suggestions from their workers as U.S. companies do.) Most of these ideas are small—making parts on a shelf easier to reach, say—and not all of them work. But cumulatively, every day, Toyota knows a little more, and does things a little better, than it did the day before.

Companies can be so busy trying to grow, trying to do more of what they’re already doing – that they forget to improve what they’re doing.  Productivity is just as important as growth!

Make the effort to get even a little better every day.  Listen to your employees suggestions, even the smallest ones.  Over time the changes can really add up – perhaps even to the extent your company becomes the largest car company in the world.

By the way – I’m a HUGE fan of the book “The Toyota Way