Genchi Genbutsu is a Japanese term translated to “go and see” and like many other Lean terms, has its roots in the Toyota Production System. This concept is the idea that people need to physically go and see the happenings of a business at the factory floor level to have a full understanding. The process is also referred to as “Gemba attitude” and is the foundation of a Gemba walk. There is more to the concept of Genchi Genbutsu than just walking through the facility floor, for it requires observation and comprehension from the leader, manager, or whoever is taking the Gemba.
The practice of Genchi Genbutsu is usually done by leaders or managers as they are the ones who most likely spend the least amount of time on the floor. By seeing issues up close and personal, managers will have a better understanding of issues while also having the opportunity to talk to the “experts”, those working on the floor and dealing with the issue personally. Genchi Genbutsu is also an effective tool for new employees. If they’re allowed to take a comprehensive tour of the facility, they will be able to see how their job affects the big picture, and really understand the production process.